The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

The friend zone does exist.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/11/2017 Category: People
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 679 times Debate No: 103174
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
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The friend zone (fzone) most certainly exists, and is undeniably a negative phenomenon. A phenomenon that no one is at fault for letting happen, but both parties CAN be at fault for perpetuating. Those are my main points that I will focus on defending.

I would first like to define and distinguish between two different kinds of fzone, then I will allow any potential cons to make their opening arguments. So, quite simply, the fzone is any situation where person A is attracted to person B and would like a relationship more significant than friendship with them, but person B is only interested in a platonic friendship with person A. Now there are two sub-context that fall under the above context. Pre-disclosure fzone is the above situation but person A has not disclosed their feelings or desires to person B. Post-disclosure fzone is the above situation where person A's desires have been disclosed but not reciprocated (whether they were simply rejected or given an elusive response) yet the two parties continue to interact outside of necessity.

Finally, while the fzone is certainly gender neutral, the negative aspects are experienced exponentially more by men than women. Also, fzone deniers are pretty much always referring to unrequited male attraction when denying the fzone, i.e. slamming the nice guy trope and accusing men of claiming entitlement to sex. Therefore, I will refer to the fzone with the 'man is attracted to woman who just wants to be friends' context in mind.


First I'd like to clarify what exactly I can conclude the F-zone actually is; a term for unrequited attraction, simply that. Also known as rejection. in such a case, how can it "not exist"? Rejection is a regular occurrence and therefore, most obviously exists and in no way is giving it a new and trendy name (The Friend Zone) perpetuating ANYTHING or causing it to be nonexistent. but getting past this obvious fact, if we delve into the clear implications of a deeper meaning to it "not existing", I infer that you believe that friendship is a natural escalation of most relationships and should not be seen as strange, and romantic feelings either occur or do not occur and neither party is at fault for wanting or not wanting to be with the other person. Yes this is a fair statement, but who said that putting someone in the friendzone meant that it was an action of discrimination or choice to begin with? The act of preferring friendship or a relationship with a specific individual can be both natural OR a choice by the other party and nothing in the word friendzone specifies that discrimination of the potential love interest is involved. The stigma of this word is simply based on reading far too into it's meaning. Even going beyond those two truths, it cannot be denied that friendzoning is still real and DOES happen. it may not always been such an active choice but sometimes it is. In this case of friendzoning where there was an active choice to deny a person's affections, it's not uncommon. it's not 100% of the time a choice but it DOES happen. Therefore whether you define freindzoning as active rejection or passive lack of interest, it's clearly real.
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you Con for accepting and demonstrating a clear understanding of the nuances of this topic.

While I agree that rejection is commonplace, and rejecting a person can stem from either a conscious choice or passive feeling, I disagree with your notion that the fzone equates to rejection. The key requirement for someone to be considered fzoned is to actually be "friends" with the person who is not reciprocating feelings. Though friend zone is technically a slang term, most dictionaries have this caveat in the definition. Even colloquially, whether denying the fzone or lamenting it, the "friendship" between the two people in question is a constant. If some guys go for a night out in some clubs or bars and some of these guys approach women and get rejected, they are not considered to be fzoned, simply rejected. Given the requirement for an active "friendship," my definitions posted in round one are the only pragmatic possibilities for the term's manifestation. The only other way I've seen the fzone portrayed, is in the notion that once put in the fzone, a person cannot escape it relative to the person who rejected them. And in that sense, the person will be in the fzone forever, regardless of the status of the "friendship." However, I feel that definition strays from the focus of our discussion.

Your inference into my beliefs is correct, however, I must disagree with your statement that the stigma is caused by simply reading too much into the term. And I think this is more so the issue I intended to discuss. When people deny the existence of the fzone, they aren't really denying that my defined pre-disclosure or post-disclosure fzone exists. As you said, how could they? Rather, they are denying that it is a adverse phenomenon that should be labeled and stigmatized. This is what I have an issue with. Being in the fzone is assuredly negative, hence the stigma, and is something that people should be cognizant of and take measures to avoid.

The first reason for this is the potential emotional pain of maintaining a "friendship" with someone who does not share your feelings for them. Being in a "friendship" with someone you're attracted to, while knowing that it is all but impossible for that person to feel the same way about you, can be painful or even torturous. Every interaction would remind the rejectee not only that they still have desires for the person, but that those desires will probably never be reciprocated. While there are varying degrees of this by person, that is indeed a negative situation. And there are certainly those who can drop all feelings once rejected (in which case they are no longer fzoned by my definition), but these are rare occurrences which I believe lie outside the point of the discussion.

The second reason being in the fzone is a negative phenomenon is the high potential for imbalance in the "friendship." It is similar to one of the arguments people make against adults and minors being in a consensual romantic relationship. Where the adult has an unfair advantage in the relationship due to the greater level of maturity and general control over their life. With regards to the fzone, the imbalance is caused by the rejectee necessarily having significantly stronger feelings for the rejector than the rejector has for them. The result of this imbalance is what those who complain about the friendzone are truly lamenting: an unequal exchange of value in the "friendship." Deniers often dissolve the desires of those who lament the fzone down to: they just want sex in return for being a friend (though I believe such cases are unrealistic and in the vast minority). In that case it's easy to disregard the feelings of the rejectee. However, more realistically, what's being lamented is the lack of equal exchange of value. I constantly put quotes around the word friendship because in the context of the fzone, how can such a relationship be considered true friendship?

A friend is someone who you have an equal and mutual relationship with. A relationship where value is exchanged equally to the extent that both parties are satisfied. Just as one would consider the relationship between an adult and minor invalid due to the imbalance, the imbalance caused by someone friend zoning another, makes It impossible to correctly consider such a relationship equal and by extension: a friendship. The rejector is necessarily in a much more empowered position to get any value they may seek out of the platonic relationship, i.e. favors, entertainment, company, mental/emotional support, due to their rejectee's feelings for them. While the rejectee, by definition, cannot get what they want. And rejectors are much less inclined to even provide platonic value, particularly in post-disclosure situations, when they know the main motivation of the rejectee is attraction as opposed to the potential value of a platonic relationship. They are inclined however, to manipulate the rejectee's feelings to maximize value gained from them.

Society pushes us to maintain these relationships under the pretense of friendship. However, claiming that such relationships are anything but adverse and unhealthy, ignores the pain and inequality those in the friend zone experience.
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by FanboyMctroll 1 year ago
It's funny you mention this debate, I have already debated this issue in the past
Posted by Thugzbunyyy 1 year ago
Perhaps you are right. It's just that this is what I want to scream when people make the claim that it doesn't exist. I believe those people are targeting those who try and blame or assign fault for a rejection to the rejector even though the fault lies with no one.

However, saying things like the friendzone doesn't exist or that remaining platonic friends with someone who rejected you is a good thing, is wrong and misleading. In addition, guys who lament being in the friend zone are labeled as entitled to sex when they simply want an equal exchange of value. When women friend zone men, they are happy to accept favors, support, and general value from the men w/o offering any value in return under the pretense of friendship. Despite the fact that actual friendship requires equality and an even exchange of value. Often times they will coax this situation using their femininity, even subconsciously, to maximize value gained. But then turn around and label the man an entitled "nice guy" once he starts to realize he's being manipulated based on his attraction for them.

These are more so the points I was looking to debate. If I get no takers, maybe I will structure my opening differently.
Posted by philochristos 1 year ago
I agree with brian.bors7. I think the missing part of your definition is the idea that once A is friends with B, there's no way out. In other words, B will NEVER be interested in anymore more with A.

I could be wrong, though.
Posted by brian.bors7 1 year ago
"the fzone is any situation where person A is attracted to person B and would like a relationship more significant than friendship with them, but person B is only interested in a platonic friendship with person A."

I have never seen the existence of the fzone denied with that definition in use. I don't think the person you are trying to debate exists and if they do exist I think everybody would either recognize them as irrational or would not understand the implication of the different definition.

All the people saying "the friendzone doesn't exist" are using a different definition you are using.
Posted by Masterful 1 year ago
Why do people make debates that would be an easy win for themselves...
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