The Friend You Like Romantically Doesn't Owe You Anything

The Friend You Like Romantically Doesn't Owe You Anything

The friend-zone can be escaped, but not in the way you might want
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We've all heard the story of the "friend-zone." Boy is in love with his best friend, she dates all the wrong guys and fails to notice how perfect he is, then eventually realizes how wrong she was and they live happily ever after.

I used to think that the friend-zone was a myth that lonely men created to feel better about themselves. But then I got friend-zoned myself.

Yes, it sucked, but the second I realized I had feelings for a friend (that I knew had no such feelings for me), I decided to suppress the feelings. When that wasn't enough, I cut them off for a bit, then, slowly, I felt OK. I could communicate with them without having unwanted romantic feelings pop up. I had escaped the friend-zone.

Having gone through that, I had more sympathy for someone I had to friend-zone a little while later. I had been friends with this guy for a few months. I didn't have many college friends yet and I was really lonely, so having his company really meant a lot at the time.

This caused me to not be able to see what should have been clear: he had a crush on me. When I finally made the realization, I immediately let him know that I didn't feel that way about him. He said it was OK, but I could tell it wasn't.

We didn't talk at all over the summer and when we came back for the fall semester, he would barely look at me. I had started dating his friend, which caused an even bigger rift between us.

Though I understand where he's coming from, I was also really mad at him for a long time.

It was as if he was only nice to me because he wanted romance in return. But people are not vending machines. You can't put in your "nice guy" coins and expect love, sex, or whatever the hell it is you want in return.

It hurt me to know that he only wanted romance and once that was off the table, he no longer wanted anything to do with me.

But then I thought back to the friend that had friend-zoned me. Unrequited affections really suck, especially when they're for someone that you spend a lot of time with. But the key is to work to escape it.

Yes, liking someone you're friends with and them not liking you back is a real thing, but people tend to treat the friend-zone like this mythic hell dimension that can never be escaped. But you can escape. Just maybe not in the way you'd like to.

Now there are three ways you can escape the friend-zone:

The first option is to confess your feelings and try to win them over. Now, this isn't completely unheard of. I've had friends that have dated people who had previously friend-zoned them, but it's extremely rare and risky. You have to risk your entire friendship in order to do this. If it doesn't work out, it could strain the friendship or sometimes break it beyond repair.

You can also do what my ex-friend did and completely cut the person off. If you're being a love-zombie and only doing nice things for the friend because you expect romance in return, leaving the situation might be the most healthy decision for you. I understand now that my friend might have stopped talking to me out of self-preservation. But it still hurts the people involved.

The third and final option is to just get over it. It's harsh, but it's real. Why try something you know is going to fail and cause pain to both sides? Yes, getting over crushes can be really difficult, but getting a normal friendship back rather than being stuck a love-zombie for them is worth the pain.

Whichever one you choose, just remember this: Your friends do not owe you any romantic affection. The work you put into making them happy should just come out of the goodness of your own heart. If you expect romance in return, you're not being a good friend to them. If you really care about them, don't put that kind of pressure on them. They don't want a mindless love-zombie that does their bidding for the hope that they'll get a tiny love kernel out of it. They just want a friend.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

Literally, so hot RN

Literally, so hot RN

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If You Go Into Summer 2019 Only Wanting A Summer Fling, You're Only Going To Be Disappointed

They may be fun but sometimes come with consequences.

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We've all been through the summer flings. Summer is THE season where you have no commitment and are as free as can be with no care in the world. I've been on both ends of summer flings, from having one and cutting things off when summer ended and having one and gaining feelings for the other person... I've actually been dating my summer fling from 2017 for almost a year and a half now which was totally unexpected.

Back in Summer 2017, I was newly single and wasn't intentionally looking for a relationship since I just got out of one. I had a couple of small flings in the beginning, nothing serious at all. Until I met a boy in July from social media. We started talking and hit it off. We had a lot in common and enjoyed a lot of the same things. After a few weeks of talking, some flirting and a couple of dates... we had a fling going on. We weren't committed or anything, but we were both interested in each other. Long story short, I ended up really liking this guy and I could feel our fling diminishing, so I guess you could say I played some hard to get and "won" him over for good. It took a lot and I could definitely say it wasn't a care-free summer since I was trying to get him to make it official with me but now, here we are as boyfriend and girlfriend still to this day.

From my experiences and from friends experiences, summer flings almost always end with someone falling for you or you falling for them. And if you're really not looking for a relationship after summer, it can be quite hassle ending things for good due to feelings. Summer flings can also take time away from your family and friends. Everyone knows spending summer with someone you're interested in is fun, although it most likely won't be permanent, so why waste your time on them when you could be making those summer memories with your friends who will be there always?

A lot of the times, summer flings just involve hooking up and casual dates... nothing too serious. They don't involve "relationship" type feelings. But when you start to gain attachment to that person, sometimes they won't care like you do since summer flings are meant to be temporary. Of course, the person you have a fling with is someone you're into or at least think is good looking and when you find out you're not their only summer fling, jealousy can hit. Like stated above, summer is the season of no worries, and you shouldn't let jealousy take over your care-free attitude.

Summer flings, almost all the time, end in some sort of heartbreak when that isn't the intention in the beginning at all. But other times, they do work out and you guys call it quits and both move on or both end up in a relationship with each other (which was my case and I couldn't be happier to this day!). So, if your plan is to have a fling this upcoming summer, make sure you plan ahead for any type of scenarios that could potentially happen as well as know what you both want in the end.

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