Perks of Having Friends of the Opposite Sex

Time and time again, Notre Dame is criticized for the supposed lack of opposite-sex friendships. When looking around the dining hall, one will see mostly tables of all guys or all girls. However if you look a little closer (maybe check out those smaller tables), it can be discovered that there are lots of guy-girl friendships. It really isn’t that hard to have them- like all things at school you just have to put some effort into it. There are lots of great guys at Notre Dame and there is no reason to focus only on dating them. If you do you'll be missing out on some great friendships that you could've had. From my experience, having friends of the opposite sex creates for great balance in your life and provides many benefits that you may or may not realize. Unfortunately, I can only comment on the benefits of having guy friends as a girl, as I don’t have much experience the other way around. 

1. Guy Advice

I can definitely say that I've found out some quality information from my guy friends on how they see girls and just think in general. Example: if you are texting a guy and need text interpretation, your guy friend will give you the straight-up, honest answer whether the guy is interested or not. They will remind you to play it cool, more often than not. They can also give you the hard truth that maybe that Halloween costume is not your best option. Disclaimer: Your guy friends do have the potential to accidentally misinterpret other guys texts.

2. Protection

As it is, we, unfortunately, live in a world where women shouldn't walk at night alone. In other words, collegiettes have to be very aware of their surroundings. Cue guy friend. The usual cab ride can be avoided when you have a group of guys to walk home from the party with at night. It is much safer to walk in groups than alone; since they're your friends, you know they'll be looking out for you. This factor has recently come in handy for me since my campus running routes have started to get old. I don't feel completely comfortable running the streets of South Bend by myself, however one of my guy friends who knows the area very well has offered to run with me to show me new routes. This way I can be surer of my safety and get to see new parts of town.

3. A Change of Pace

Since we live with all of our girls, we get a lot of girl time.  Sometimes, it's nice to go hang out with guys and just chill. When you have your established guy friends, it is great to go joke around and hear what’s going on in the boy world. Gym talk, sports talk, constant movie/TV show quoting - it’s all refreshing when compared with the usual girl drama that probably exists within your friend group.

4. A “Go-To” SYR Date

As Notre Dame tradition calls for two dorm dances a year, it comes in handy to have guy friends around to call on when you are in a crunch for a date or too afraid to ask the guy you’re crushin' on. Not only can you ask them to be your date and then because you are friends coordinate a very creative costume, but you can also help your friends out when their dates plans are not working out.  

5. Football

Okay, I'll admit that my football knowledge has increased dramatically thanks to my guy friends. Now, I can enjoy the game even more. When you are watching the game and have no idea what "roughing the snapper" means, that's when you turn to your trusty guy friend and get your questions answered. Also, let's be real, it is a lot easier to do push-ups when your guys are sitting near you. 

These are just a few abbreviated versions of the many perks of having guy friends- I did not get into the fact that their high metabolism allows you to feel less judged when you eat around them or they invite you to their parties. However, I will let you discover the other perks yourself as you create solid guy friendships around campus. There is a lot of focus of Notre Dating. Remember not every guy has to be your crush. Just because you think a guy is cool, it does not mean you have to start dating and he thinks the same way. Go for the friendship, it’s just as awesome!

Shout out to all my guy friends, love you all.

“Don’t forget to love yourself” -Soren Kierkegaard

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Images: 1, 2, 3 (provided by author), 4 (provided by friend)