If you are a brave young man, there are only a few dreary things that have the power to make you quiver in fear. Among them are death, torture, hell, giant spiders, lady gaga, and the friend zone. I know many valiant lads who endured the torture brought on by that phrase of doom, “I just want to be friends.” I have spoken with many such people, the citizens of the cursed friendzone, a few of them within the last week or two. All are frustrated, crushed, perplexed, and heartbroken. All unsure of what to do or why the girl (or guy) they are madly in love with is rapidly running away from them. While popular culture often portrays only men as victims of “friendzoning,” women are also plagued with this bittersweet form of rejection. It is one of the hardest things in life to be rejected as a lover and a spouse, but allowed as a friend or acquaintance. I too have been friendzoned, more than once, and even ended up marrying the loveliest woman who friendzoned me (though first I friendzoned her in return).
I survived and learned a lot. But what about you, is there something you can do? Can you become more than a friend? Should you just leave and never talk to them again? Before we can explore that, you must realize there are plenty of different scenarios or reasons why this is happening, there is no one answer. Everything depends on your particular predicament. That said, you are probably living in one of the three likely cases, outlined below.
1. They don’t like you (and may never start)
This is probably the most likely case. If you have never felt a vibe of romance coming from them (towards you), but have only had a platonic connection to them, you are likely here. If they have very clearly rejected your attempts for more than a friendship and left no opening in the future, you need to accept it. While you may feel so much love in your heart towards this person, in all likelihood you are just young and stupid, and have built up an over-exaggerated, hyper-inflated, emotional affinity towards them. If they don’t like you, even in the slightest bit, quit vying for their attention. If this person has no romantic feelings or inclinations towards you, you will only waste yourself trying to stir it up. And even if, and that’s a big if, that person is “won over” by some form of flattery, fame, or fortune on your part, you will only be loved for something, not as someone. This realization may hurt, and stories of “other fish in the sea” may only aggravate you, but relax and move along. If they are truly meant to be yours, they will be, but for now don’t waste your breath.
2. They are crazy and love the chase
When I was younger I liked a girl. At the time I though she “broke my heart” though now I think it was all a silly joke. I was a young fool and had no idea what romance was. I would often text her on my early 2000’s cell phone. She barely replied. I continued trying to talk to her in person. She barely paid attention to me. I even texted her a few very cheesy romantic “good night” messages. (Now I’m thinking “dude I was a moron.”) Yet, she kept me in the (distant) friend zone. During this whole time I thought she was “the one” and felt heartbroken. Then after a month or two I grew tired of It, became annoyed, and stopped talking to her. The feelings also left, making me first realize the immense danger of following your feelings. About two weeks later, out of the blue, I received a text from her saying “Yuriy, I really need you, please don’t leave me.” I literally laughed at it and didn’t ever reply ever again. Later I understood the psychology behind it; she was a girl that liked attention. She liked the feeling of being adored or sought after. Yet, when a guy was pursuing her, she felt little attraction towards him, because he is “easy to get.” Conversely a guy who rejected her (like I did) fascinated her to the point that she tried to pursue him. There are both women and men who are selfish in this way, they may not even know it. My advice is to leave them alone and let them grow up, they are immature and not ready for love. True love requires selfless giving, not selfish taking. Very likely, you will also thank God alongside with me that He didn’t let it work out. Today I know those emotions were childish and trifle, compared to the stronger, truer, joyful feelings I share with my wife. I cannot thank God enough for letting my “heart be broken.”
3. They have feelings but one of you is not ready
I recently spoke to a guy who had a close friendship with a girl that he liked. They even went on a few dates together. Everything seemed to be going well until the girl emailed the guy, stating she was worried that she gave him the wrong impression. She abruptly said she wanted to remain “just friends” and left to a college across the mountains. He swears that she acted like she had feelings towards him, took a long romantic walk with him, continued to talk and write him intimate letters for a long time. Yet in her last letter she closed the door on everything. I have spoken with at least four other guys who had almost the exact same story (makes me wonder if they’re all romancing the same girl). If your situation is similar then it’s likely your “crush” has or had feelings towards you, but one or both of you is not ready for a committed relationship. They may feel attraction towards you, but be unwilling to get serious and settle down forever. Perhaps they think they are too young, too poor, or too uneducated. Perhaps they only have cold feet, and are scared of their feelings or saying “I do forever.” I suffered with all of the above when things started getting serious with my wife. On the other hand, they may have feelings for you and be ready for a relationship, but think you are too young, immature, or need some progress. In any case, you need to give them their space. Don’t be pushy and forceful. Don’t try to rush anything. Don’t try to convince them anything. Instead work on yourself and let them mature and figure things out. If someone is meant to be yours, they will be. I promise this.
WHAT’S YOURS WILL FIND YOU
Whether you were rejected outright or friendzoned, if you were meant to be, you will be. How can I know? This is a bit beyond the scope of this blog post, but here goes. Every single child born has two parents, and with different parents, that particular child would not have been born. If my dad did not meet my mother, I would not exist. Yet God, before the beginning of time, already knows everyone by name. God knew me before I was born; he knew my parents would indeed meet and fall in love. Every single romance and marriage is already foreknown and predestined. Now of course this doesn’t mean that an unseen force will push you to marry some special person against your will. Nor should you be passive (especially as a man) and think your spouse will magically appear with a ring (though it can happen). What it does mean is that God has ordained things to pass, and knows the future from the beginning. That includes the fact that your parents met and gave birth to you. That was not an accident, you are not an accident in God’s eyes, you were known before the foundation of the world. So was your marriage and romance, also known before the beginning. So were your children, if you will have them. What God ordained, no man can steal. Think about it, if you fumble up and by clumsiness drive away your “wife to be” and never bear your children, you just changed God’s plan and made people, whom God planned to be born, become unborn and uncreated. That isn’t possible because God is not a liar. Do not fear that if you miss your chance, you will lose your love forever. If someone is meant to be yours they will be yours.