Oh, Hans, this is so bad...
The “Friend Zone.” We’ve all heard of it. It’s the horrible place women put their males who are just, you know, like totally nice guys trying to be romantic after the girl decides that they’re too good for them. It’s totally real, guys. Super real. Incredibly real, and super-duper traumatic for the unfortunate men who get put there.
Just kidding, it’s totally made up and the women of the Internet are here to tell you why. The “Friend Zone” has been a hot topic on-and-off for a few years now, but it’s persistent place in our zeitgeist has been taken to new heights of notoriety. Mainly because the right-wing, conservative, Christian-leaning “news” outlet, The Federalist, decided that it was time that they put in their two cents on the issue.
And wow, did they do it wrong. The women of the Internet (and this writer) are not happy about it.
Here’s what they had to say and what I have to say:
It’s finally happened. The seminal work you’ve been waiting for is here. Lutheran pastor and senior contributor to The Federalist Hans Fiene — author of such fine pieces like “The Left Hates Mike Pence For Loving His Wife Because They Don’t Really Think Men Can Be Evil,” “United Benefit Holders Aren’t The Only Ones Who Should Stop Wearing Leggings On Flights,” and “Pumpkin Beer Is Super Gross” (someone get this guy an AP manual with the section on title capitalization highlighted, please)—penned his newest masterpiece: “Why Men and Women Can Never Be ‘Just Friends.’”
All you men out there who have been toiling away in the “Friend Zone” for years…. Your personal savior is here to free you from those chains. Or, at least, he thinks he is.
Stop Ross Gellar 2k17
Fiene’s piece about the mythical “Friend Zone” has ignited the Internet, causing women to again talk about the unique toxicity of this particularly persistent social misbelief.
The term “Friend Zone” was popularized in the mid-1990s in an episode of Friends (though, I’ll give it a pass because Joey is actually saying that Ross is to blame and he should just tell Rachel how he feels…) and has been the go-to refrain of self-proclaimed “nice guys” who feel that they are owed sex by their female friends for being a decent person.
What the “Friend Zone” is not…
Now, I know 90% of the men reading this article have already hit the little “x” in the corner and moved on with their days, but the rest of you — stick with me.
The friend zone is not, as Fiene seems to see it, a prison in which too-big-for-their-britches women keep well-intentioned, vulnerable, and love-sick men for years on end. It’s not, as he would have you believe, a device by which women use their feminine wiles to lock men into years of misfortune and prevent them from having lives, wives, and children of their own.
It’s a creation of men’s own sense of entitlement and fragile egos, and not to mention, a convenient way to avoid self-reflection at all costs.