Ross and Rachel may have ended up together, but they probably shouldn't have. Here's why.
'F.R.I.E.N.D.S may be celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, but the legacy of the show will probably live on forever, as will everyone's opinions about the most on-and-off relationship on the show — Ross and Rachel. Now, many feel that Ross and Rachel ending up together just wasn't the right move for either of them at all. There was no reason for her to get off that plane to Paris; she could have just gone ahead to further her career and live her best life without caving to the tantrums of a whiny, insecure man-baby. But not enough is said about her short-lived relationship with Joey and how that could have really worked out for them. So here are some reasons why Rachel and Joey should have ended up together after all.
The couple were already friends for seven years before Joey realized he had feelings for Rachel. What's more, by the time he had this epiphany, he already knew her very well and had supported her through the highs and lows for almost a decade. While not all romantic relationships evolve out of friendships, those that do come from a place of constantly having each other's backs and knowing each other's flaws certainly helps.
Never forget — Joey was the one who encouraged Rachel to quit working as a waitress so she could try and find a job in the fashion industry. That's not all, he even got her the interview for her first job at Fortunata Fashions, which, while it was not exactly what she wanted, it was Rachel's stepping stone into her eventual career in the industry. He believed in her dreams and her ability to achieve them, and he's the person she leaned on the most in tough times.
Joey's first concern when he realized he had feelings for Rachel was ruining the friendship they already had, as well as the relationship he had with Ross. Even when he came to the conclusion that he may never be able to have a relationship with her, he never treated her differently as a friend.
When Rachel had to live with Joey for a while after Phoebe's apartment caught fire, she was initially appalled. But she soon learned the simple joy of being able to let go a little and being messy. In contrast, living with Ross was rather miserable and uncomfortable.
Joey insisted Rachel live with him when she was pregnant, and even after Emma was born, giving up a large part of his bachelor lifestyle in the process (as well as Hugsy the penguin). He gave up a large part of his living space, any hope at a regular sex life in his home, and even baby-proofed the apartment, all for her. Even though he still had some feelings for Rachel, their relationship was not in the least affected.
When it was clear that the short-lived relationship wasn't meant to be, the two parted on the best of terms, without any drama. Joey accepted the reality of the situation and did his best not to let it affect the friendship that they already had.