She's Just Not Into You
Almost everyone has heard the dreaded phrase at least once, "Let's be friends." It comes in other variations, such as "I don't like you THAT way," or "I don't see you in a romantic way." There must be thousands of variations on how that message is delivered. And of course, every time, no matter the wording, it sucks, and it is a very clear indicator that their is little to no romantic potential between you and the other person. Yet, many men regrettably hold onto hope. They maintain the belief that somehow, some way, the girl will come around, and fall in love with them. This is NOT a good idea. I have composed a list of advice on how to handle it when a girl just wants to be friends.
PART ONE: She just wants to be friends
1) IF SHE SAYS SHE ISN'T INTO YOU ROMANTICALLY, BELIEVE HER.
It is hard to hear, and it certainly hurts, but it is the truth. Don't waste your time trying to change her mind. If she says she still wants to be friends, don't attempt to use the friendship as an opportunity to win her back. The chances of this working are slim to none. It's painful, but cut your losses, and be thankful you didn't waste even more time pursuing someone who was not interested in you.
2) REACT GRACIOUSLY AND DO NOT TAKE IT PERSONALLY
Don't freak out. This person probably meant more to you than a random crush, considering you developed a relationship with them on the basis of friendship. This means that it probably hurts more. Just the same, do not do anything drastic such as: bombard them with phone calls (especially drunk phone calls) or love notes, don't follow them around, don't obsess. This will not help matters, and will not convince the girl to date you. The best thing to do is find a distraction, such as hanging out with friend (preferably non-mutual friends), or focusing on hobbies or sports. Most importantly, don't take it personally. Just because she didn't want to date you does not mean that there is anything wrong with you. She just doesn't have those feelings. Absolutely DO NOT obsess over "what you did wrong," because there is a very large chance that you didn't do anything wrong at all.
3) IF YOU FEEL THAT HANGING OUT WITH HER WOULD BE AWKWARD/PAINFUL DON'T DO IT.
You got stung. Rejection sucks. And if you still feel incredibly weird about the situation, you don't have to dive into it. If seeing her would make you feel awkward, you don't have to do it right away. If you still want to be friends, but feel somewhat embarassed, give the air a little time to clear. Allow yourself time to get past the awkward phase, and completely accept that things between the two of you aren't going to work romantically. If you feel that you are unable to get over this person, and that you will always have romantic feelings for them, I would recommend keeping a distance. Do not get back into a super close relationship them. You will give yourself false hope, and most likely be confonted by the same rejection again. If you cannot get over this person, but don't want to lose contact, or are not able to, then be friendly, but don't attempt to revive the friendship to its previous heights.
PART TWO: What to do when "just friends" is becoming a problem
What do I mean by "becoming a problem"? There are sticky situations that arise when a girl tells a guy she wants to remain only friends. When the "friendship continues" It is not uncommon for women to use men in the "just friends" scenario as unhealhty sources of emotional support. In these situations, the man is lead to believe that he may still have a chance with the woman. Often he will complement her, stand up for her, build her self esteem, buy her things, take her places, listen to all of her problems, and offer a shoulder to cry on. Essentially, he will do all of the things a boyfriend should do for the woman, except have sex with her.
This is great news for the girl, who has aquired something of a worshipper, or a device to build self esteem. The guy becomes one of her best "friends." All the while, the man gets little in return for his favors. He ultimately gets none of his deeper needs satisfied (a romantic/sexual relationship). In short, the man ends up doing all of the giving, and getting little to nothing back. All he is left with is the hope that she will be with him, and it is not likely to happen.
Not all "just friends" end in such painful and one sided situations. As long as both parties put a fairly equal amount of work into the friendship, and there is a clear understanding that no romance will develop, the friendship can work out. But as stated previously, it is not uncommon for a one way friendship to occur.
Here are some signs that you are in an unhealthy "just friends" relationship:
1) She only calls you when she needs a shoulder to cry on, or needs help.
This is bad news. If she only wants you around when she is having a bad day, watch out. It may feel like she truly trusts you with her inner thoughts and emotions, but what she is really doing is using you to boost her self confidence. If she never calls to just hang out or just say "hi", she is not interested in sharing a friendship with you.
Examples of this are when she only calls because:
- she wants a ride somewhere
-she needs to borrow money
-she wants to talk about her boyfriend
2) She isn't around when you're having a bad day.
If she regularly confides in you, and asks you to help her with her problems, then she should be willing to do the same for you. If she has no time to help you through a problem, she obviously isn't interested in a balanced friendship, or you for that matter.
3) You make plans, and she bails on you (often).
Friends make time for their friends. If you are constantly arranging to hang out with her, and she keeps cancelling, this is a sign that she is not interested in a balanced relationship. If she bails on you often, especially to hang out with a boyfriend, there is a good chance that your needs aren't being considered.
4) She talks excessively about how her boyfriend is a jerk, yet never breaks up with him.
This is a major sign. If her boyfriend is truly bad to her, and still, she won't leave him, it indicates that she has low self esteem. This means that it is not unlikely that she would use you to fill that void. It also means she is fishing for compliments. She probably knows that you are attracted to her (even if she pretends to be ignorant of the fact).
The scene plays out like this: she tells you have awful he is, and you are supposed to tell her how lovely she is, and what a fool the boyfriend is for treating her poorly. The whole things ends with you showering her with compliments, and getting little back in return. Don't fall for this. It may seem like an oppurtunity to win her over, to show her how good it would be if she was with you. Remember that she never breaks up with the guy. Tell her simply, that if she is unhappy, that she should leave him. Don't flatter her with compliments, or get your hopes up. If she stays with the guy despite the fact that he is bad for her, and continues to crawl to you for support, you should know that you are being used.
5) She talks excessively about how ugly/ fat she is
This, again, is compliment fishing. She tells you how fat she is, and you are supposed to say she's beautiful. You serve as a self esteem fix.
6) At times she hints that you may have a chance to be together, but conveniently finds an excuse for why this can't be so.
There may be a good reason, if this happens only once, but even so, it is a good idea to be somewhat suspicious. If this happens to you twice, RUN! She is consciously toying with your emotions. All other of the listed 6 signs are at times done unconciously by women. This one requires conscious effort. It indicates that she is manipulating you emotionally. She is aware of your feelings and is attempting to exploit them. This is more than a one sided relationship, it is full blown emotional abuse.
Last but not least, I'd like to say that the most obvious sign of all can sometimes be how you feel about her. Think of a list of things you would be willing to do for this person as a friend, and ask yourself if you truly believe they would be willing to do the same for you. If not, there is a strong chance that the relationship is not a priority for her. Once you have told a girl you like her, and you remain friends with her, most of the time she will be able to tell if you still are attracted to her. She can exploit this, so be careful. The best way to prevent this emotional burden is to believe the girl when she says she doesn't want to date you. It is time to move on, and find somebody who does want you in a romantic/sexual way. For very few men, a relationship can come out of "just friends," for most, it only leads to frustration.