How to stay friends with someone you have feelings for? (10 best tips)

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By: Naveen B

It’s very difficult to remain friends with someone you have feelings for if the relationship never progresses into a romantic one. The obvious question is why would anyone want to stay friends with someone you have romantic feelings for?

While it’s true that most people don’t actually enjoy being in love with their best friend, it doesn’t mean that they want to lose this person from their life altogether.

Staying friends when you wanted more isn’t always easy. You see, you want to tell them about how you feel because you know that they deserve to be happy, but you’re afraid of ruining your relationship.

Being friends with someone you have feelings for can be frustrating because you’re constantly doubting yourself and doubting their interest in you. Whether they reciprocate your feelings or not.

Recommended Reading: How to be friends with someone you love? (complete guide)

When you love someone, the last thing you want to do is lose them, especially when they are your friend or the person you admire. But what happens when you are attracted to someone who’s also your friend?

If you don’t approach the situation correctly, then you may end up losing that person completely. This article explains how to stay friends with someone you have feelings for while keeping the friendship strong enough to last forever.

How to stay friends with someone you have feelings for?


How to stay friends with someone you have feelings for? First things first, be honest with yourself. Your objective is to move forward so look at your situation objectively and realistically. 

And also talk about it so that both of you can express what is going on in your head. You need to be clear about how many contacts you want to have now and what is expected of both of you in terms of friendship.

Also, whether there will ever be any more than just a friendship between both of you.

Talk honestly about where your relationship is heading and if it’s heading nowhere, then break up before any emotions are involved, which will later hurt the people involved or hamper any chance of staying as friends.

Also read: How to tell someone you have feelings for them? (10 Tips)

So many relationships fail because they drift from being friends to being something else without stopping off along the way.

If you want to stay good friends with someone you have feelings for, try not to let these 3 things happen:

Spite – In your heartbreak, don’t retaliate out of spite. You may feel like hurting them or breaking their trust because they broke yours first but that only hurts you even more! Take revenge instead by moving on without them and making a great life for yourself.

Self-pity – Be determined not to fall into self-pity again. Let go and move on to greater things, especially true if that person is already seeing someone new. Remember you deserve better than feeling sorry for yourself so get busy living and loving.

Letting old flames die hard – Sometimes we think we’ll never be happy again until we get back together with someone we have feelings for.

Don’t burn bridges by sending pleading emails and texts. Don’t endlessly stalk him or her on social media sites like Facebook either (and don’t join every fan page he/she has created!)

Also read: Can you be friends with someone you love?

Ask yourself these questions before making friends with someone you love:

Do I handle my emotions well?

Can I set the necessary boundaries to save myself from, not to get attached?

Do I move on quickly enough after a broken heart?

Will I be able to maintain a rational mindset when I am with this person?

Write down your answers. This is an important exercise to reflect on your thoughts and emotions to prepare yourself for a healthy friendship, especially with someone you have feelings for.

10 Tips on how to stay friends with someone you have feelings for


Here are some ways that help you how to be friends with someone you have feelings for.

1. Don’t judge yourself:

Yes, we want to keep everyone in our lives happy and there is nothing wrong with doing that, but sometimes we can go a little overboard and judge ourselves as not good enough, as feeling too much (both of which are very unattractive).

Try making sure your intentions are pure; if they aren’t or feel like they aren’t, maybe you should back off. If it’s just an innocent friendship, then go ahead and enjoy it.

And if it’s more than that and you’re worried about how he/she will react, just talk about your needs — needs that wouldn’t be met by just being friends — and see what happens from there.

Also read: How to tell someone you love them over text? (11 Tips)

2. If you can’ control your feelings, then don’t:

If you decide that ending your friendship is what’s best, don’t go running back after you’ve had some time apart. But if it’s not worth fighting for, do yourself a favor and move on.

It’s difficult to think about doing so, but keeping someone in your life who doesn’t want or love you back is damaging in many ways — both mentally and physically.

Staying close to that person can keep them in your life longer than they should be there because of unresolved feelings or unresolved pain.

3. Don’t play games with your own emotions:

Don’t run hot and cold or act wishy-washy if your feelings are serious. You won’t win in that game, even if it seems like it can work in your favor (i.e., getting him/her back).

It’s not fair to hurt yourself or that person over unresolved emotions. That will only lead to more hurt in both your friendship and relationship.

If you want to make sure they don’t forget about you, focus on being better each day as a friend.

Make things easier by focusing on quality over quantity when talking about your relationship with them, too.

If it gets awkward or uncomfortable later on down the road — and inevitably, it will — then bring up what happened and see how he/she responds and works through things together.

And remember — communication is key. Take some time to talk about these situations so you know where each of you stands before they become an issue later on down the road.

Also read: How to make someone fall in love with you?(According to psychology and science)

4. Establish Clear Boundaries:

Start by establishing boundaries while at the same time realizing that there is a special connection you once shared.

You should also remember that if things go wrong, it won’t change how much he/she means to you as a friend and shouldn’t make them feel less important either. 

Even though boundaries can help keep us from getting too close physically or romantically, don’t let them get in your way of being able to support one another through all stages of life’s journeys.  

Usually, when two people are attracted to each other, they naturally want to become more than just friends. This means that your friendship is at risk of ending if your mutual attraction causes you to be more than just friends.

Although falling in love can be exciting and fun, it can also cause confusion and conflict in your life. If falling in love causes problems in your relationship, you might decide that it’s best not to get involved with your friend.

Also read: How to maintain a friendship with someone you love? (10 Tips)

However, if you choose not to get involved with your friend because of possible problems or risks then consider staying friends while trying to distance yourself from him or her at least emotionally.

You may still think about him or her physically but hopefully time will heal any emotional wounds left behind by trying to remain strictly friends.

5. Learn how to be comfortable with silence:

If your friendship was based on constant communication then learning how to be comfortable when things go quiet may not come naturally.

However, it’s important that both of you respect each other’s right to change and if they really do care about their happiness, they should respect your right to pursue yours even if it doesn’t include them romantically anymore.

Don’t make an effort to find out everything there is about what she’s doing by constantly asking questions or showing up where she might be hanging out.

You can still make an effort not to involve her in activities that are obviously meant for couples because doing so will only confuse her more about your true intentions.

6. Remember why you want to say friends with someone you love:

If you’re still having a hard time cutting off your attraction, remind yourself of why he/she’s such a good friend and start focusing on how lucky that makes you feel that they chose to be your friend in spite of any romantic attraction between you two at one point.

Remember what it is about her personality and character that made her so important in your life before even acknowledging how attractive she was and try not to become jealous if things don’t go back to how they used to be or if others take her attention away from you.

7. Remember that it’s okay if your friendship ends:

If a romantic relationship doesn’t work out then don’t allow that one failed opportunity prevent you from making future attempts to find love elsewhere.

It may be heartbreaking and it might take a little while to get over her.

But eventually, you will find someone who loves and appreciates all of your best qualities and treats you like royalty.

So don’t give up hope, especially when there are millions of others who deserve you for who you are. 

Relationships that start out as friendships often do take more work than traditional dating.

Because we relied on our friends for support and guidance already so we can’t expect them to come in and replace what’s already there immediately.

Especially if they’re still attracted romantically, which is something we’re working through together.

Also read: 21 Psychology tricks to get someone to like you

8. Don’t rush into things, be mature and understanding:

And if all else fails, then one day they will meet that perfect person they dream of, when that happens, don’t be upset if they get together.

Relationships are often built on shared experiences so by being there for each other during hard times, you might have actually built a strong foundation of love which brought them together even if their romance was lacking before.

Love is strange in its own way so just because things didn’t work out between two people doesn’t mean it won’t between two others who are more compatible.

Remember how lucky we are to have great people in our lives who love us even though they know what type of person we really are on both good days and bad.

9. Know when it’s time to move on:

Even if your friendship hasn’t been tainted by a romance gone wrong, there might come a point where you just need a break from each other.

Because life gets in the way or because being around them makes you feel inferior or uncomfortable after being rejected once.

There’s no shame in wanting some space and it won’t change how much she means to you so don’t be afraid of hurting her feelings by giving yourself time to deal with any lingering emotions which may be hindering your ability to function normally around her anymore.

10. Do what’s best for yourself:

Finally, just remember that our life is too short to spend any amount of time being miserable and if she truly cares about you then she’ll support your decisions no matter how much they change things between you two.

Friendships are important, but so are romantic relationships and at some point, we might need to ask ourselves which one we value more.

If it’s a friendship, then it may be wise to leave things as they are but if not, then there really isn’t anything wrong with letting go of someone who can’t or won’t accept us for who we really are.

Because although romance might come along later in life, friendship can be even more important since we rely on them every day.

Final thoughts:

The best way to avoid confusion when it comes to your best friend is to make sure you let them know how attracted or interested in them that you are before spending any more time together. 

We all have needs and desires which sometimes make things complicated but there’s no point in crying over spilled milk so focus on moving forward instead of taking things too personally, especially if they end up having different goals than you do.

There are many other great people out there who are willing to stick around no matter what obstacles get in your way.

Life is good, even when it hurts. So, reflect on those above tips on how to stay friends with someone you have feelings for and maintain a healthy relationship with them. Good luck to you.

Recommended reading: How to get someone to like you over text? (10 Tips)

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Experienced Psychology and philosophy Writer, self-help and relationship Coach and thought influencer. He has 7 years of experience in Personal development industry. His expertise as a self-help and relationship Coach has been highlighted through his articles in medium and substack to name a few. To be updated with his latest work, connect with him by following his social media accounts.

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