Is it ok for male and female friends to say "I love you" to each other?

I have male friend who went through some bad things in his life and decided that he needed to tell the people he cares about how he feels. I also love all my friends as I have few and cherish the ones I do have. We exchange I love you's when parting but have an absolutely platonic relationship in all other aspects. We have never even joked about having a relationship or anything beyond friendship. I don't understand why it is any different than telling my female friends I love you. My boyfriend has broken up with me over this.

Updates:
Update: Is it ok for me to thank you guys and gals. :)

What's Your Opinion?

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Most Helpful Opinion

  • I call bullsh*t on this. Unless you are so insecure that you can't see the difference between platonic and romantic relationships, then there is no reason to get upset. People love their friends. People tell their friends. People display physical, non-erotic (or in some cases, merely humorous-erotic) gestures of their affection towards their friends. Ceasing to do so once you are in a "relationship" with someone is to deny yourself the character traits that make you who you are. It's a selfish notion to presume people will withhold affection from other people they care about for one person.They are your friends. They will probably be around longer than most lovers. Enjoy them.

What Guys Said 2

  • In my experience, it's absolutely unhealthy for men and women to establish frienships, without any anticipation of something more developing. Further, in my opinion, it's flat-out relationship-suicide for a man or woman to maintain a friendship with the opposite sex when s/he is either married or in a commited relationship. You may wish to disagree with me on this, yet this will be hard, since you boyfriend left for this very reason. Going to the point of exchanging, "i love you's" with your male friend, is more than I can begin to fathom. Each man gets one woman, each woman gets one man. Those are simply the rules, Always have been, always will be. Men and women are hard-wired for physical attraction, which precludes any possibility of the aforementioned. All the best.

    • So seclusion is the only way to a bright and sunny future with only one person? From what form of medieval philosophy does that come about? Relationships vary like any other social structure. You don't point all your feelings at one person, alone. Maybe her boyfriend was too insecure to accept that she can "love" a lot of people on various tiers.

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    • 'Men and women are hard-wired for physical attraction' I think this line is true & says it all.

    • Sure medieval thinkers uniformly believed the world was flat, but they also knew that should a man stick his hand in a fire he'd get burned. Some things don't change as they're part of the grand design, and sexual tension between men and women is one of them. Try as you may to have it your way you'd might as well pee in the wind always hoping for a different result.

  • I think its a non-issue outside of a relationship. But it definately breaks the laws of intimacy between a couple within. How would you feel if your man told a platonic female friend 'I love you'?

What Girls Said 12

  • i only say 'i love you' to my boyfriend and I expect him to say it only to me- of course sometimes he and I can sarcastically say it to a member of the opposite sex but I only say those words to my boyfriend who I do love so.

  • I agree with nova2k. I have a best friend named david. though he is very good looking we are completely platonic. He has had my back and been a great friend to me since day one, and vice versa. We care about each other very much. We are like family. And yes we say "love you" or "i love you and I'll talk to you later" all the time. Doesn't mean we secretly do love love each other. I tell my girl friends I love then and some of my guy friends I love them. People need to know the difference between I love you's between friends and when its meant in a romantic way. I mean seriously. Does he get mad when you tell your dad, grandpa, or male cousin that you love them? Its just dumb and chilish.

  • When my male friend said he loved me, it brought up a lot of confused feelings from me towards him. Even though from his end it was purely platonic, I overthought about it and it cause me a lot of stress. But I'm the type that takes 'i love you' seriously in the romantic sense whenever it comes from a male. Coming from my female friends though, there's no problem. Sure I don't say it back since I feel psychologically restricted to only use it in a serious relationship, but I show I appreciate them with other words.

    • I too take the 3 magic words very seriously. Though in recent months I've realised that there is more than one form of love. I would never say it unless I meant it, even to my mother, which is sad I guess. However now I've realised after recent events that it is important that the people you care about know it, whether they be romantic or platonic. I love certain friends of mine who are guys and girls and I let them know about it. We are clear that it's platonic and that is all that matters.

  • I have no problem saying I love you to all my close friends, guys and girls. You can say I love you to brothers and sisters so I don't see why you can't say it to friends who are as close as siblings. I do only say it to friends that I don't have any emotional tension with though. There is a guy friend I have and we've been on and off very friendly friends, I don't think I could exchange I love yous with him because that would just feel a little weird because of how our relationship is. I do tell my other guy friends I love them occasionally because I know we're like brothers and sisters. I would be careful about saying this if I had a boyfriend because if I were in his place I'd be a little uneasy. I guess it depends on where everyone's understanding is.

  • that's ridiculous. I too tell my friends that all the time. me and my ex even tell that to each other sometimes, which is a different story, but it means the same as it does with my girlfriends. he sounds waaaaay to insecure.

  • Well then your ex was a total jerk. I say I Love You to my male friends all the time. So, if you're ex had a problem with that he was probably an insecure LOSER ! You were also probably too good for him. ;)

  • I once had a guy friend. Both of us said "I love you" to eachother. We were really good friends...that's it.You see, it all depends on how you mean it.

  • generally, its definitely okay to tell your guyfriends and female friends I love you...they can just be a pal, a bud, a bro/sis...ive said it to my guyfriends when they were there for me...however when you're in a relationship with someone else, or live in together, or engaged, or married...as much as it sucks, you can't have the same friendships with the opposite sex anymore...you can't hug them or hop on their back, or push them in a lake or say I love you like you used to even though there is no attraction or wants beyond friendship. Sometimes people who do go against this norm..they eventually end up cheating on their partner and develop feelings...it sort of comes from a guilty conscience, like now that you're tied down with your partner, you know for a fact you can't date anyone else, but you want what you can't have, therefore you cross the limit. Especially with guys...who are all about rage and excitement and hunting, men are known to cheat more than women because they like crossing their limit. Anyways, I hope this helps, personally, I think guyfriends and female friends are only temporary. You can only be 'just friends' for so long...and then once you start falling for them, things get complicated and you can never be the same again. Ever heard of the saying 'love is friendship set on fire?'

    • I think you can absolutely express your love whether in a relationship or not. As long as both parties are clear that it is platonic then it shouldn't be a problem, if the partner doesn't understand that then he doesn't trust the bond of his own relationship and that is a problem in itself.

  • The problem with mix gender platonic relationships is that they often blur the lines of what is friendship and what is romantic. For a lot, if not most, there are just some things you do and say that are only for your lover. Kissing on the lips, certain touches and hugs, sex, and some expressions of love. Saying "I love you" is one of those. Perhaps they may be the fault of the English language, but "love" does have all sorts of meanings. Like you said, you love your friends. It's not unusual. People love their families. Their pets. Their cars. But the meaning can be misinterpreted if said to another male. And I can see where your ex is coming from. As I'm sure you would feel insecure if he said it to a female friend. Don't lie, you would. It's human nature. We all would. All these actions that blur that line are fine when you're single. Half the time they're covering up for deeper feelings anyways, whether one-sided or not. But once you enter a serious relationship, yes, compromises and changes do have to be made. It's the commitment to the relationship. I think some people fail to see that when you're in a relationship you're not single, so you can't act like you are. You are now sharing your life with someone and both people need to readjust their lives. If you're not willing to make little changes here and there, then you're not ready to share your life with someone because honestly, this argument that you and your ex had is petty sh*t.

  • I have plenty of male friends that I say "i love you" to, and those relationships are completely platonic. Because just because they are male doesn't make them any less significant to me than my female friends. I love all my friends and I don't see why it is such a big deal "to love them" as friends. Maybe your boyfriend just felt insecure about it. Did you try explaining to him that you only "love" them as friends, just like you "love" your female friends? My ex boyfriend didn't really like it so much that I told my male friends that I loved them, but he learned to accept it because I had told them that I loved them long before me and him ever knew each other.

  • yes

  • I think it's fine so long as all parties are on the same page about what it means. On the other hand, it makes sense that a sigificant other would feel threatened by that. In that case, I would refrain from saying it, out of sensitivity to the partner.

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