Tumblr is full of thought, discourse, and discussion. While some of it is providing answers to questions that nobody really needed to know the answers to, like why do dragons have eyes on the sides of their heads if they are predators? (you’re welcome, by the way), there are also deeply rooted and thought-provoking posts considering all manner of very human things.

One Tumblr user had a eureka! moment regarding a tweet that comically described the act of friendzoning and in turn gave a very detailed explanation on how it all actually makes sense. Went viral along the way too.

Relationships are never easy, but that doesn’t stop people from explaining them to make them easier

Image credits: Matthew Bland (not the actual photo)

So, Tumblr user Alara J. Rogers (alarajrogers) stumbled upon a Tumblr post that included a screenshot of two tweets. One read “A woman’s idea of ‘Let just be friends’ is ‘Hey listen to all my problems and keep me company… while I have sex with someone else,’” (sic!).

The other tweet was presented in response to the first one, saying: “So a woman’s idea of being friends is being friends?” For most, this is a comical definition of the act of friendzoning someone, but to Alara, it was a lightbulb moment.

Tumblr user Alara J. Rogers saw this tweet about the friendzone and a light bulb moment occurred

Image credits: alarajrogers

She explains in her post that it all makes sense because it boils down to social and cultural conditioning: men are encouraged to not share their feelings, especially with other men. If anything, on average, they rely—more or less solely—on their romantic partners for that.

Women, on the other hand, are not socialized in a way that forbids them to be expressive when it comes to emotions. Hence, they develop different kinds of relationships, ones that are heavily based on emotional support, i.e. “what friendship is is someone who listens to all your problems and keeps you company.”

She went on to explain how this comical definition of friendzoning and the response to it actually make sense

So, there is now a disconnect whereby men think that sharing emotions is part of a romantic partner package, whereas women think it’s part of a romantic partner, but more importantly, a part of the friends package as well. This thus fools men into thinking there must be something romantic when there isn’t.

In turn, both parties end up confused and perhaps even hurt, at the very least. “So men suffer terribly from being trained in this way. But women suffer in that they can’t reach out to male friends for basic friendship.”

Alara concludes that the only way to fix this is to teach boys it’s OK to show emotions, to love your friends, to express needs and share problems with friends. And once this social norm is eliminated, both genders will benefit from this.

Image credits: alarajrogers

It wasn’t long until the post went viral on Tumblr. It clocked in at over 425,000 notes—Tumblr’s way of registering likes and reblogs. You can find Alara’s post here, but before you go, why not let us know what you thought about this in the comment section below!