Having feelings for your friend can be overwhelming if you are unsure whether he feels the same way about you. Although the fear of being stuck in the friend zone may hinder your desire to broach this subject with him, avoiding the subject is an almost guaranteed way to keep your relationship strictly platonic. Finding out if your friend would date you may require that you step outside of your comfort zone and approach him about the subject.
Analyze the Situation
Take a close look at the women your friend dates, talks to and shows romantic interest in. Look for patterns that may give you a clue as to what your friend is looking for in a romantic partner. If you share some characteristics with these women, such as body type, common interests and activity level, then there may be a chance that you too would be someone your friend would date.
Attraction in Friendships
Mutual attraction is something that may be more commonplace in platonic friendships than most people believe. A 2012 study conducted by April Bleske-Rechek and other researchers at the University of Wisconsin Eau-Claire suggests that men in cross-sex friendships tend to report feelings of physical attraction to their female friends, whether or not that attraction could jeopardize their friendship. While this may not be true of every female friendship that your friend shares, the results of this study indicate that there is a possibility your friend may have potential feelings for you.
Signs of Attraction
How your friend acts around you may say more than the words he says to you. Making eye contact, smiling, leaning in closely during conversations and finding excuses to touch your shoulder or rub your back are all signs that your friend may have more than platonic feelings for you. If you and your guy friend spend a lot of your time engaging in one-on-one activities, such as going to the movies, shopping or having lunch, then his intentions may be to spend time alone with you to see if you have romantic interest in him.
Although there is always the possibility that your friend may not share feelings for you, the only way to know for sure is to ask him. You also can broach the topic by telling him that while you value your friendship, you have feelings for him that you would like to pursue by dating him. Putting your feelings out in the open will give him the chance to honestly respond. Even if he turns down your offer, you will at least have the knowledge that your time and affections can be spent pursuing someone else.
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- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: Benefit or Burden? Attraction in Cross-Sex Friendship
- Journal of Social and Personal Relationships: Romantic Intent, Relationship Uncertainty, and Relationship Maintenance in Young Adults’ Cross-Sex Friendships
- Psychology Today: Escape The Friend Zone: From Friend to Girlfriend or Boyfriend
Anthony Oster is a licensed professional counselor who earned his Master of Science in counseling psychology at the University of Southern Mississippi. He has served as a writer and lead video editor for a small, South Louisiana-based video production company since 2007. Oster is the co-owner of a professional photography business and advises the owner on hardware and software acquisitions for the company.
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