Publication Date

Spring 4-21-2017

Document Type



friend zone, gender, sexuality, same-sex friendships


"“Friend zone” is a popular culture term used to describe a friendship where one member in a friend dyad desires a romantic or sexual relationship and the other member does not. Sexual Script Theory (Simon & Gagnon, 2003) and Sexual Strategies Theory (Buss & Schmidt, 1993) suggest that individuals will typically view the friend zone as a Qield dominated by female-to-male interactions, given sexual scripts on women as gatekeepers and men as being more active in initiating relationships. It may be expected then that men and women and individuals who are not exclusively heterosexual may then follow different scripts for making and negotiating friend zone choices. There is very little data available concerning instances of the use of the term friend zone in same-sex friendship interactions. Individuals are typically expected to have relationships that conform to the heteronormative script, so most people are resistant to the thought of being attracted to others of the same sex (Lamb, 2004). Because of this, many “best friendships” between those of the same sex have been used as protection against claims of same-sex attraction/relationships (Lamb, 2004). Given the lack of research on same-sex friend zoning, as well as the restrictive nature of heteronormative scripts, the current study explores the practice of friend zoning within same-sex friendships."





Download Full Text (838 KB)

The Friend zone: An In/inite Place Where Nothing Good Happens: A Comprehensive Study of Friend zoning Across Varying Genders and Sexual Orientations

Included in

Psychology Commons