“I’m in love with my best friend”

I became friends with a boy and we weren’t super close, but I struggled with depression and he got me out of it and we became super close. We’ve never been more than friends and while we do love each other and say it pretty frequently, we’ve friend zoned each other.

I’m falling in love with him more everyday and I don’t want to tell him in case it ruins our friendship. What do I do?

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One thought on ““I’m in love with my best friend”

  1. anon says:

    Eventually your feelings will start to affect your behavior around him, if they haven’t already. The best way to minimize the damage to your existing relationship is to first be brutally honest with yourself: are you the type of person he’s attracted to (physically and behaviorally)? If not, do you deal well with constant emotional stress? From there, you have three options.

    The most ethically responsible is to be gently honest with him and explain what you’re going through. Phrase this as a description of your personal situation, not as a request for something specific from him (other than understanding). Give him time to respond — it might be as long as a few weeks. If he’s willing to maintain the friendship but doesn’t want to reciprocate, and if you think that you can maintain a ‘flirtatious friendship,’ where you stay in the friend zone despite feeling attracted to him, then say that; if you don’t think you can, then say that. It’ll mean breaking off ties with this person for a while, but it’s surprisingly easy to reconnect down the road if you decide you want to. This has the highest chance of failure, but it’s the easiest to recover from over time.

    The least ethically responsible course is to be emotionally coercive — basically, force him into something. Rather than explaining your feelings, surprise him with a romantic gesture; anything from a home-made dinner with candles to a sudden kiss. If it’s well-received, great! If it isn’t, cry and make him leave. When he attempts to contact you (give him about… a day or so to make the first move), talk about how betrayed you feel since you assumed the feelings were mutual, and how heartbroken you are that he’s doing this to you. If he hasn’t done anything in a day, launch into that anyway, but with feelings of anger as well that he also left you in tears without doing anything. This has the highest chance of short-term success, but unless he starts out “into it” then it’ll be a pretty unstable relationship.

    Please note that although this is effective advice on how to be a terrible human being, there’s still a line. Don’t get violent and don’t go to his home unexpectedly. Don’t threaten to do those things to him either. You can allude to feeling like you want to die, but don’t express it as a specific suicide wish. If you do feel like you want to die, please at least call the NSPH at one eight hundred 2738255.

    So with all that uplifting stuff out of the way… the middle road! Here’s probably what I’d recommend if you really want him but don’t think it’s likely he reciprocates.

    Seduce him over the course of about two to five months. Not in the arm-twisting way, but in the “personal makeover” way. Figure out what he likes and do that. Go to the gym, up your makeup game, try wearing the kind of clothes he likes, etc. Be more confident or more coy — if you’ve been close up till now, you’ll probably have a good idea of what it’ll take. Don’t do it all at once! If you’ve been a conservatively-dressed homebody up until now, showing up in the club with half a top will set off a ton of red flags, or vice versa.

    Some people will tell you not to change yourself for someone else, which is bullshit. All relationships are about changing yourself. What this situation gives you the chance to do is to “try on” a new persona. If it doesn’t fit you, you’ll drop it eventually — but it’ll break you out of your comfort zone. This method is by far the most work, but it’s also the only one that puts you in control of your situation. Unlike either method above, it also gives you the best personal sense of whether or not you really want this relationship (ie, are willing to work for it).

    I’ve successfully used all three of these options, and my recommendations are from my own experience. Whichever you go with, best of luck.

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