Try to be very observant of the relationship between Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson. Whether you read about them in Arthur Conan Doyle’s books or you saw them on BBC’s television adaptation, you would have undoubtedly considered their relationship to be a bromance. And it’s not just them.
There have been multiple notable bromances throughout the course of pop culture history. There’s Starsky and Hutch, George Clooney and Brad Pitt, Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, Wayne and Garth, Harry and Lloyd, and more. You probably get the picture by now. Love is something that takes its shape in various forms.
And sometimes, it can take the shape of a bromance – a deep friendly relationship between two men that is just as enduring as it is meaningful. These days, society refers to this relationship as a bromance because it actually helps strengthen the basic aspects of friendship including love, trust, solidarity, and camaraderie.
A man’s romance with a girl can often get sidetracked as a result of bromances that are forming or brimming. Studies have also shown that a lot of men might be a lot happier in their bromances than in their real romances.
A lot of people would assume that a man’s usual romance with a woman is considered to be the pinnacle of all human relationships. And that might be true. It’s how the human species has persisted for such a long time now.
Procreation is possible because of these intergender relationships. However, that still doesn’t take away from the possibility that men might actually be more content in their bromances than in their romantic entanglements with women.
Why is it that men really get a kick out of their bromances? Intimate friendships between men and other men are deemed acceptable by society.
This is especially true due to the fact that more and more men are being more open about their sensitivity and emotionality. And this might actually prove to be threatening to a lot of romantic relationships.
Strengthened relationships in bromances might actually lead to men having less time and emotional energy for their real romantic relationships. When a man spends more time and energy on a bromance, it can lead to a weaker bond in a marriage or romantic relationship.
The concept of a bromance is actually something that has existed for a very long time now. Take the letters of Alexander Hamilton for his dear friend John Laurens (yes, Hamilton is a real person and not just a Broadway musical).
George Washington was also known to send a lot of sweet and intimate letters to male acquaintances. Even former president Abraham Lincoln shared a bed with a male for quite some time.
The study shows that during the 20th century, the bromances of male friendships were actually labeled as taboo. It was very hard for men to be open about their intimate friendships with other men. And it was all due to a culture of classic homophobia and misogyny that plagued society at that time.
There were very strict ideas surrounding masculinity and the ethics concerning gender norms and expectations. However, these days, bromances are more acceptable and they aren’t really taboo topics or sensitive issues to discuss anymore. Just refer to the many contemporary bromances listed above (both fictional and real) for proof.
A recent test was conducted on 30 men who identified themselves as heterosexual. They were all open to having at least that one “bro” in their life who they felt they had very deep and intimate bonds with on a purely friendly level. The study also showed that having bromance relationships had very little boundaries.
It was normal for two “bros” to just sleep in the same bed, share secrets, and express admiration for one another. Men typically have to hide their more “sensitive” side from women because they feel like they are afraid of being judged and belittled. However, when they’re just hanging out with their bros, they feel more open and free to be who they really are. And that makes them happier somehow.
This study has also shown that the intimacy levels in bromances indicate that these are the kinds of relationships that are actually built to last a lifetime.