By Kimberly Garcia
Blog Content Contributor
Half of the population identifies as male and the other half as female. With this fact, it is difficult for society to understand that a boy and girl can be just friends. Any time there is a boy and a girl walking together, they are immediately believed to be a couple.
As someone whose best friend’s gender is opposite to that of my own, this is one of the most annoying things that can happen while walking around anywhere. When I talked to Miranda Gonzales and Abigail Flint, both Public Relations seniors who have best friends that identify as boys, they related to this scenario in every way. “Everyone thinks were together,” Gonzales said.
Abigail says that it isn’t too bad for her out in public, but her parents are a different story. “My parent always ask, ‘Oh when are you and Travis going to go and hang out?’ and I just tell them, ‘Oh no it’s not like that,” Flint said.
Although this is a one of the worst things about having a friend of the opposite gender, there are some great benefits too. Being able to see things from the perspective of the other can help in solving problems that someone of the same gender might not be able to figure out. “I can get a man’s perspective on things that I would otherwise not be able to,” Gonzales said.
My best friend, Chris Escobar, also related to the idea of being able to get the perspective of a girl. “I’m more logical than she is and she is more emotional than I am, so that kind of balances out my perspective on problems I have when taking on a situation,” Escobar said.
Having a best friend of the opposite gender can also set you up to experience some interesting encounters. Flint mentioned one incident that occurred while her and her best friend were out searching for a book. After driving all over San Antonio, they finally found it, however, she thought it would have been easier to look it up. “I told him we should have just gone to the other store, because we could have picked up both packages at the same time,” Flint explained. “A random guy stopped and said ‘Your girlfriend is riding you real hard!’ to Travis.”
Escobar noted a time when he and I used our friendship to joke with others about how we met. “When we were volunteering, we told the other person with us that I use to date your best friend,” Escobar said. This was a funny episode because in our “story” I abandoned my fake best friend for him. Although this story of how we met is not true, we bounced off each other to make it work.
Although we don’t have as many options for best friend items like t-shirts or necklaces, we have the ability to gain a better understanding of people around us because we have a first-hand perspective on how someone of the other gender may think, and that’s better that a necklace.
Featured illustration by Emily Castillo.