I recently asked an 18-year-old guy if he believed in platonic relationships between guys and girls. His answer was interesting: "Only if there's a barrier," he said, "like if she's dating your friend or if she's your cousin. But generally - I'd say no."
Platonic Philosophy -- It is my feeling that when you have a close friend of the opposite sex, with whom you share everything and where no mitigating factors exist, at least one of you will be harboring deeper feelings for the other.
After years of field research on the subject (hey, someone has to do it) I have found this to be true. "We're only friends" is a cop-out: it means you don't know each other that well, that one of you feels something the other doesn't, or that you are lying to yourselves. Strike this comment if one of you is gay or attached, or if you are related.
It is my feeling that when you have a close friend of the opposite sex, with whom you share everything and where no mitigating factors exist, at least one of you will be harboring deeper feelings for the other. This shouldn't be surprising: the best relationships grow out of friendship, the deepest attractions grow out of an intimate connection with someone's soul. Why should it be otherwise?
This is not to say that you should drop all of your guy friends for fear that they are secretly pining after you. Or that you should assume that the girl you have considered your best pal for years is really just waiting for the right moment. Just be aware that there is always a subtext to every situation, and the subtext of deep friendship, not surprisingly, is love. Don't be fooled into thinking it can't happen to you.
Do I sound like Pacey yet?
My friend Nikki was best friends with Gary for years. They talked for hours every day, did everything together. They each went out with other people throughout high school and the early part of college. We're only friends, Nikki would protest, when asked what the deal was. She sang this song and danced this dance for the better part of two years.
Sometime, somewhere, things changed. They started dating. Seriously. No one was shocked (except maybe Nikki); it was a natural outgrowth of what had been going on for years. Today they are married with two kids. But remember: They're only friends.