The first time I tried to sit down and write this article, I attempted to channel my inner wit to force out this really funny introduction about how Ed Sheeran and Taylor Swift, Phoebe Buffay and Joey Tribbiani and Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama set the standard for male-female friendships.
Immediately following, I tried to shift the discussion.
I realized we forget to take a step back, smell the roses and thank our male best friends for their unique greatness.
While I’m not trying to invalidate my first draft, there’s a very, very important reason why I now discuss it in the past tense.
That garbage of an introduction that I wrote about six hours ago proved to be one, big, pathetic scapegoat.
They say laughter is the best medicine, and as I sit down and write this article, I’m tempted to make it witty, generic and relatable to avoid my purest emotions on this matter.
While I’m not going to say my co-ed best friendship doesn’t embody a dash of the aforementioned, to chock it all up to different sides of the same humorous coin doesn’t even scratch the surface.
Like many other women, I’m afraid to publicize, on a “deep” level, how really thankful I am for my guy best friend.
But, that cycle of denial ends now.
When we’re young and begin to embark on the often-dreaded social frontier, we’re propelled to make friends with other women because they’re the first ones who “get” us.
Years pass, and females continue to identify with each other over what society deems the unmentionables.
We bitch about our bodies together, and we feel as if the world is up against us, like we’re these foreign, misunderstood creatures with a code the public can’t crack.
Without warning, our first heartbreak arrives.
We indulge in pop culture to ease our troubled minds, and in the short term, we feel comforted.
Thus begins a dangerous social construct’s evolution: “Boys have cooties.”
As women, we’re programmed to think that 99.99 percent of guys can’t process our emotions (and maybe research will make my argument collapse upon itself, and I should probably just stop myself now to avoid sounding stupid).
Regardless, I’m here to challenge you to think of that one male in your life who disproves everything society once told you, the one who puts all those silly little myths to rest.
When you’re done thinking, thank him, and thank him a lot.
Society has this devilish habit of teaching us “guys suck,” and for guys, I’m pretty sure it’s vice versa.
We’re taught not to even bother trying to understand each other because half of us are from Mars, and half of us are from Venus.
To make matters worse, when you’re too close with a member of the opposite sex, everyone thinks there’s some underlying sexual tension on one side or the other.
Women can be friends with each other all the time with the widest array of stereotypes imaginable, but we always tend to fall back on that one deepening curiosity of “are they dating?” when a woman and a man spend a little too much time together.
On the outside looking in, male-female friendships appear incredibly one-dimensional, don’t they?
That’s what makes my co-ed best friendship so special.
I love having a guy best friend not because of what we have together, but because of what we don’t.
The fact it’s unconditional, unconventional and unapologetic is something I would not trade for all the riches in the world.
Since life is too short, allow me to shatter the norm and publicize all of the emotions I have about why I love my guy best friend with all my heart.
To my guy best friend (you know who you are),
You have taught me to never take myself, or life, too seriously.
As a result, we love each other without any sort of boundaries.
You are not afraid to tell me when my outfit looks ridiculous, when I should probably stop acting like an idiot and when you last went to the bathroom.
You will consistently call me out on my bullsh*t, and when my poor actions do not reflect my good intentions, you will more than let me know I need to get my act together.
They say opposites attract, and I couldn’t agree more.
You’ve often called me your lover, your life, your shawty and your wife.
Despite us definitely being soulmates on some level, I want to remind you that you are wired differently than me.
In many ways, you are everything I’m not.
Maybe I can’t completely accredit that to gender, but it might have something to do with it.
To know you is to love you, and you touch the lives of every human being you encounter.
I know you have enough friends (of both genders) telling you this information day in and day out, and I am constantly self-improving in hopes of one day being half of the person you are.
Nevertheless, our similarities reinforce my belief in the universe.
I grew up fully cognizant of family’s inextricable importance, but my support system grew complete when I met you.
You are the brother I never knew I needed.
But when you entered my life, I didn't know how I could have possibly survived prior.
As a consequence, I cherish our friendship’s durability.
You might not have been given to me by blood, but that’s okay because now, I will never take you for granted.
When I look at you, I know I’m doing something right.
Amidst our daily antics, I cannot help but feel overwhelmed with luck and pride that our paths crossed when they did, whenever they did.
In fact, who knows when the friendship really began?
I’m terribly sorry if you remember the exact moment and I don’t, but whatever provoked this sh*tshow probably involved laughing so hard that we needed to take an impromptu trip to the bathroom.
I will therefore never stop feeling blessed for every decision I have ever made that led me to that very moment.
I was in the right place at the right time to welcome you into my madness.
You say you “don’t do emotions,” but I’m going to call you out on your bullsh*t.
Maybe it’s “girly” of me, but I tend to sweat the small stuff.
I get so caught up in my head, and sometimes, I overreact over the most minuscule flaw in my day.
You would do anything for me, but you won’t cave to my theatrics.
Even when I encounter a real-life problem, you never fail to put things into perspective for me.
How do you always know what to say?
Your advice causes me to see the sky a little bit brighter, laugh a little bit harder and think a little deeper.
I live more because of you, and I can only hope I’ve inspired you to do the same.
Thank you for making sure I never go alone to a date function.
Thank you for taking care of me when I sick and promising me I’m not dying.
Thank you for making wildly inappropriate jokes at the worst times.
Thank you for shutting down the dance floor with me.
Thank you for never being full and for always pushing me to take one more bite of my panini.
Thank you for coming with me to the library when you don’t have that much homework to do, but you know I need some company and a Wawa 44-ounce iced coffee to avoid temporary insanity.
Thank you for challenging my morals and everything I once thought I believed in.
Thank you for rapping in the front seat of my car to Nicki Minaj when I’m doing everything I can to avoid a three-way collision.
Thank you for the good, the bad and whatever lies ahead.
Words don’t do justice to how thankful I am, but I think you get the point.
I can’t say it enough: Life is too short.
Apparently, male-female friendships are already unconventional, so why not take it a step further and pour your emotions out to the one with the Y chromosome you love the most?
Ladies, take a step back, smell the roses and thank your male best friends for their unique greatness.
We are the lucky ones.