Throughout middle and high school, Jeremy had a crush on his female best friend. He never told her about it, but it was probably obvious — she was basically his only female friend in a group of nerdy boys. Uninterested in his affections, she would tell him about the boys she liked, and he’d readily share his advice on how to talk to them. Now 26 and living in Massachussetts, he’s noticed a similar dynamic emerging between the women he’s dated — there was the friend with benefits who enjoyed getting him riled up and then saying they should just be friends, and the ex who made a habit of telling him details about her new sex life.
As an adult, these experiences have helped him better understand what was so alluring about his best friend. “It took me a while to realize I enjoyed having a crush on her more than I would have enjoyed dating her,” he tells me. He suspects now that she knew this all along, and maybe even liked that power she had over him. In his mind, she turned him into a “friendzone cuck.” And Jeremy, like the 11,000 others on the subreddit r/FriendzoneCucks, has come to fetishize this.
Being “stuck in the friendzone” is typically seen as a pejorative emotional and social state most men strive to avoid. In situations where the one being friendzoned is a straight man and the one enforcing the friendzone is a straight woman, it’s often seen as humiliating or emasculating, as though a “better man” would be capable of escalating the friendship into something more. But among self-identified “beta” men, this is exactly the appeal. Having a woman yield this humiliation against them and wave the superiority of other men in their face is the ultimate encapsulation of their beta fantasy.
“My fantasy would be to help you prepare for a date with another man,” a recent post from a male member of r/FriendzoneCucks reads. “I could bathe you, shave you, paint your nails, rub lotion on your legs and buy you a sexy outfit to wear for him.” Elsewhere, betas offer anecdotes and ask questions about navigating the friendzone cuck space. “At what age did you realize you were destined to be a cuck loser?” a recent post asks. “Did you know it always, or at a certain age it clicked in your mind that you’re a loser when it comes to girls?” In the thread, many shared stories like Jeremy’s from their teen years. They had crushes on girls, but they treated them strictly as friends.
For many friendzone cucks, this is the ultimate embodiment of cuckoldry, though it’s
different from cuckoldry in the classic sense. Rather than having an actual girlfriend or wife who has sex with other men — with the cuck’s involvement, and for his pleasure — the friendzoned cuck is detached from his crush’s sex life entirely. He may have an emotional attachment to her — and he may even get to enjoy some “romantic” experiences like rubbing lotion on her — but otherwise, he experiences none of the perks of a sexual relationship.
“Friendzone cucking is a form of cuckolding that heavily emphasizes the mental angle,” explains Chris, a Midwestern friendzone enthusiast in his 30s. “It can be a desexualized form: With a [typical] cuckold relationship, the cuck is involved in setting up and watching the action. The kink supposedly revolves around the woman and bull, but in reality, it’s also centered around what the cuck wants.” In some cases, the standard cuck may even be permitted to have sex with his female partner outside of their cuckolding dynamic, or as a way to enhance it. But with friendzone cucking, the man is “more cut off from the sexual side.” “He could be viewed purely as a non-sexual actor by the woman,” Chris says.
Chris’ ideal relationship would be one where he had a loving connection with a woman, but no involvement in her sex life whatsoever. “I want a mutual understanding that she is on a level above me,” he says. He’s gotten to experience this to an extent, dating women who were interested in telling him about their other partners or having unrequited crushes on people who just wanted to remain friends. But he’s never found someone willing to fully dive into friendzone cuckoldry.
There do appear to be some women interested in the dynamic, though. “I recently cucked my friend,” a 21-year-old woman wrote on r/FriendzoneCucks this week. “My close friend has had a crush on me for years. He’s admitted it in the past, and we had a long talk about it. I didn’t feel the same way of course, but he still continued to buy me lunches.” As the post continues, she recounts sleeping with his friend’s roommate while the three of them were supposed to be watching a movie together. In the comments, beta men encourage her to continue doing this. “Either he’s heartbroken, or he’s fapping to it like crazy,” one wrote. “Probably both,” another replied.
While the friendzone cuck fetish may be wrapped up in complicated dynamics of dating and masculinity, what most people want from it is intimacy. Denial obviously plays a significant role, too — they yearn to experience the affections of a woman, but still be kept from experiencing what men are culturally conditioned to think they want the most. Rather than actually desiring sex, many of the friendzoned cucks are even happier to have it kept at a distance. Society may shape the friendzone as a bad spot to be, but for cucks like Jeremy and Chris, there couldn’t be anywhere better.