Ah, yes...the friend zone. Used by many. Loathed by all. If you're looking to find out whether or not you are a current resident in the dreaded friend zone, you'll find some great answers here. Determining if you are in the friend zone is probably one of everyone's least favorite things to do, but at times, it is a necessary evil that simply must be dealt with. There are several things to consider, and some are far more obvious than others. The most important thing you'll do for yourself as you try to find the answer to this, is to be honest with yourself, even if the answers you're coming across aren't what you want to hear. That's the hardest part, really. None of us want to come to grips with the idea that the object of our affection has put us in the friend zone, but if you really want to know the truth, you'll need to be open to the signs, and be willing to recognize them. Luckily, there are several great places to look for info. Once you've had time to take a good look at everything, and start putting some of the facts together, you'll find your answer. From there, you'll be able to decide how you will move forward.
As you navigate your way through the plethora of information that is all over the internet, try not to get too overwhelmed. You'll find sources that are reliable, and you should also take some time to ask those with whom you are the closest, for their thoughts. They know you well, and if you trust their opinion, you'll definitely want to get their feedback on this. It's not an easy thing to go through, but you need to know for sure, so that you can decide how you will proceed. One of the best ways that you can find the answers you need, is to talk to people who have been through the same thing - and preferably aren't still caught up in the situation. They will likely have the most sound advice to offer you, and will be able to speak from experience. Whether it's someone you know in your life, or it's relationship advice that you're seeking online, or seeking via other avenues, the best advice you will find, is going to come from those who have had the same experience. Do yourself a favor, and be open to the feedback, because chances are that if you think you're in the friend zone, you probably are, and you're going to have some important decisions to make. No one wants to remain a permanent resident in the friend zone, pining away from someone who doesn't see them as anything more than a friend. It's a legitimately terrible feeling that is sure to bring out the worst in anyone. So, should you discover that you are, in fact, in the friend zone, you may need to exit the relationship altogether.
If the person you are crushing on is openly talking to you about other men/women, then chances are, you are in the friend zone. I think we can all agree that when we are really, genuinely into someone, the last thing we are going to do, is to talk about any other love interest(s) that we may have, because we are aware that that is really a terrible idea. No one wants to hear about other men/women that the person they care about deeply is interested in. It doesn't sit well, and we all tend to be aware of this, so when we're into someone, it's generally not a common practice for us to discuss other potential love matches. That is a sure way to drive someone away, so unless the person you're into is insecure, and has a lot to prove by sharing this information with you, chances are that do not see you as a potential love interest, and you are, indeed, in the friend zone.
Ouch! Yeah, if this is happening, you are very likely in the friend zone. No one who is into you is going to try and set you up with someone else, unless they're incredibly strange, in which case you should probably reconsider your feelings toward them, altogether. In all seriousness though, someone who is looking to set you up with other people, isn't likely to be looking at you romantically. They may ask you directly, or they may bring someone along the next time you go out together, but rest assured, they're looking to set you up, and it isn't with them. This can be incredibly frustrating, because now, not only do you have to deal with getting through time with this person that you care so much about, wondering if they could possibly feel the same way about you, but you also have to take part in entertaining their friend. HOW FRUSTRATING IS THAT!? So, if this is something that has happened to you in the past, or does happen to you in the future, then the chances are incredibly good that you are in the friend zone. Generally speaking, we don't tend try and push those we wish to date away, by attempting to set them up with someone that we're going to have to see them with on a regular basis.
If this is the case, especially if you've made attempts at one-on-one hang out time, then your current address can be found somewhere in the city of, 'Friend Zone'. Population: YOU! That may seem a bit harsh, but honesty is what you need right now, because if you're trying to spend alone time with someone, and they always find a way for there to be other friends around, then they're not likely to be looking for anything other than friendship with you. It could be that they're just incredibly shy, but I wouldn't count on it. No matter how shy some of us may be, when someone we are really into wants to spend alone time with us, we'll be happy to oblige them. The only time you'll ever really be in a situation where it's more comfortable to have other people around, that doesn't involve you being in the friend zone, is when you're getting to know someone, likely for the first time, and it's more comfortable for you both to have others around as buffers. If you know each other, and this is still the case, you are surely in the friend zone.
Generally speaking, if someone is physically attracted to you, there are generally some signs to go by. You can just feel it sometimes. When someone is into you they will look at you differently or you will catch them looking at you when you're not expecting it. You can tell by the way they touch you, or the way they speak to you, as well. If they are not showing any signs at all of being physically attracted to you, then chances are, it's because they are not. One of the important things about physical attraction to consider, is that it's not all in our actions, but it's also a feeling you get. Most people, if they're being honest with themselves, can sense whether or not someone is attracted to them, and not mistake their own feelings of attraction toward someone as requited attraction. You may feel it for them, but if you don't have any sense of it coming back to you in return, then chances are, they are not attracted to you on a physical level. Sure, some people are incredibly good at hiding their feelings, and there is a possibility that they're simply looking to avoid letting you know how they feel. Realistically speaking though, that's likely not the case. More often than not, if someone is attracted to you, they're likely to let it show in some ways, even if they're not obvious ways. We all tend to slip up now and then when we've got feelings for someone.
Now we've got some pretty concrete ideas to draw from, and that being the case, it's pretty safe to start connecting the dots, to figure out if the person you're into has indeed places you in the friend zone. However, at the risk of getting your hopes up (please don't), there are occasionally exceptions to the usual behavior. For example, sometimes someone who is really into you won't address it or let it show, because they simply don't know what to do. This is not unlikely, actually, and it's also very important to consider that if they truly value your friendship, they could be feeling incredibly worried that making their feelings known to you might lead to something, and if it ends, so does your friendship. This is actually a somewhat common reason for friend zone placement, but nonetheless, you're still in the friend zone. Some of the best relationships we have can start as friendships, for sure! If it doesn't end up working out though, the hurt runs that much deeper, and a lot of times, if someone really wants you to be in their life for the long term, they may not be willing to take the chance of ruining that. Taking things one step further can certainly result in an incredible relationship, but it's still a lot to consider, and if they're not sure, then it's best not to push them, because you don't want to lose them altogether.
They simply may not be ready for what the two of you getting together could mean. If you're deeply into this person, naturally you're thinking that it's a crazy idea to avoid something that could be so amazing, and that makes sense. On the other side of that though, you may be ready, but that doesn't mean that they will be, and if they're not, you can't expect them to take the leap that you want them to take with you. If they really aren't read, it's important to respect that. Chances are, that if they do have feelings for you, they're not going to take the chance of messing it up by getting together with you when they are fully aware that they're not ready to do so. You can actually take this as a compliment, and you should. Make no mistake though, you are definitely in the friend zone, and unless you're willing to wait out the amount of time it takes for them to feel ready, you're going to need to find a way to move on. It sucks, of course. It's a shame to know that something could be so amazing, but that you'll never have a chance to know, because someone isn't ready to give it a try. On the flip side though, it's also a good thing to know that there is the possibility of something happening in the future. If this is the case for you and your, 'friend', then the best thing to do is to accept this and do your best to move on. You never know what could happen down the road!
Basically, if you are stuck in the friend zone, for whatever reason, you're not going to do yourself, or anyone else, any favors by choosing to hang around there for any longer than you need to. Many of us have been there, and we're still standing, so rest assured, once you've come to terms with the reality of the situation, and you're ready to move on, you are going to survive. If you're being honest with yourself, you're not likely to think that hanging around for much longer is going to be a good idea, and that is understandable. Be kind to this person, though. They surely don't want to lose out on having you around, so if you need to distance yourself, which is completely understandable, that's cool. If you can bear it though, try to maintain your friendship. Good friends are hard to find!
Once you've had a chance to explore all of your options, and take a look at all of the information possible, you might still be completely confused, and that's completely okay. Human behavior is never an all-around textbook deal, and sometimes all of the advice in the world can't help us to figure out whether or not we're in the friend zone. Don't worry though! You still have a fool proof option left, and that option is to - ASK THEM! If you're feeling taxed and tortured, trying to deal with this and get it figured out, and you absolutely need a concrete answer, then you need to suck it up and ask them. The fact is, that no matter how many articles you read, or friends you talk to about this, the only way you are absolutely going to know for sure, is if you ask. You might not end up loving the answer, but at least you'll know.
You've pretty much done all of the outside sleuthing that you can possibly do at this point, right? So, the only thing left to do now, is decide what you're going to do. You need to be honest with yourself about what's best, and be open to doing what's necessary. You'll need to make a decision about what you're going to do. Are you going to ask them? Are you going to continue pining, hoping that something will happen one day? Are you going to cut your losses and walk away? One way or another, you'll need to make a decision.
We're always happy to offer you the best advice on to help you figure this out. There are great sources of information out there for you to take a look at, and you should definitely take the time to do so. You may not find all of the answers you are looking for, but you are sure to find some information that will be incredibly valuable to you, and may help you to make a decision regarding how best to move forward. Don't forget to go with your gut, too. If you're able to be really honest with yourself, you'll likely know the answer to whether or not you're in the friend zone, and you can also avoid ending up there again, in the future.
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