What’s Wrong With Platonic Relationships?

platonic relationships

Why is everyone shipping platonic relationships into sexual/romantic ones?

Is there no value on platonic relationships?

I remember watching Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and begging – begging – the director not to change it from the book as Harry and Hermione danced inside the tent. The sexual tension between them killed me because I wanted them to remain friends – fierce, die-for-each-other friends, yes-i-love-them-but-I’m-not-IN-LOVE-with-them friends. The kind of friendship that doesn’t seem to be valued, because even strong friendship between two same-sex people who have never showed an interest or attraction to the same sex let alone one another get shipped all the time.

Some of the best platonic relationships I’ve seen in YA have been Lissa and Rose from Vampire Academy, and newcomers Safiy and Isuelt from Truthwitch. These girls are soulmates, best friends, the yin to the yang, secret keepers, and would die for each other. Their friendships are unbreakable, even when boys get involved. I think it’s a beautiful representation of what female friendship can be.

These are not the friends I’ve seen other people ship romantically. Friends like Sherlock and Watson, Captain America and his Winter Soldier, you know, established heterosexuals being shipped into homoerotic relationships.

I have absolutely no problem with people fantasising about straight guys getting it on because there’s a distinct lack of M/M going around.

But to me it feels like these beautiful platonic relationships are being overlooked or devalued in preference of romantic relationships (whether they are gay or not is not part of my argument). Opposite sex friendships simply cannot exist in a YA book without someone screaming hysterically “insta-love!” “love triangle!” or whatever accusation is currently trendy to hurl at YA lit. One girl and two boys on a cover means the book’s GOTTA have a love triangle, right?!

indigo spell

Man, the hysterics when this cover was released. “NO LOVE TRIANGLES!” bloggers bleated. “SYDRIAN 4EVA!” Nevermind that the second dude is totally NOT a romantic interest AT ALL. Way to jump to conclusions.

My best friend is a guy. We’re totally platonic with each of us married to the guy/gal of our dreams. But being platonic doesn’t devalue our relationship because it’s not romantic.

So give the platonic friendships a chance.

What do you think? Are you sick of people shipping non-romantic relationships? Do you see romance lurking around every corner? Do you think we need more QUILTBAG romances?



About Nemo

A lover of kittens and all things sparkly, Nemo has a degree in English Literature and specialises in reviewing contemporary, paranormal, mystery/thriller, historical, sci-fi and fantasy Young Adult fiction. She is especially drawn to novels about princesses, strong female friendships, magical powers, and assassins.

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,836 other subscribers

3 thoughts on “What’s Wrong With Platonic Relationships?

  1. Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight

    This is such a great point. I never even thought about how people are constantly shipping platonic friendships as though just friendship isn’t good enough. It really is ridiculous when you think about it. I mean, I respect that people are just getting invested in the characters, using their imaginations, etc., but it does seem like it’s diminishing the greatness of friendship somewhat. I love finding really strong friendships in books, whatever gender the characters are, so I agree, we should give them more of a chance!

  2. Shannon @ It Starts at Midnight

    I think you’re right, platonic friendships absolutely SHOULD be part of books! One of my favorites is Roar and Aria in Under the Never Sky. OH and Juliette and Kenji in Shatter Me. None of those were going to be anything other than platonic, but they were still awesome friends who would do anything for each other. Such a great post, you are SO right!

Comments are closed.