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How Do I Tell My Friend I Have Feelings For Her?

A man sharing coffee with a woman as he ponders his feelings for her.
PEXELS/Mike Jones Photography

You really just have to tell her. Having romantic feelings for a woman is natural when she’s your friend. And its okay to be vulnerable, because you kind of have to be. You may get rejected, but read on to see why its really not a bad thing.

Don’t Get Your Hopes Up

You’re not the first guy to catch feelings for a woman who regards you as just a friend. Perhaps you’ve always had feelings for her, or maybe those feelings developed over spending enough time with her.

Either way, as far as you know, she sees you as just a friend. You might not want to hear that, but you need to be ready for the possibility probability that your romantic interest in her is a one-way street. So, before you go pouring your heart to her, be sure to address your feelings with realistic expectations.

Be A Gentleman About It

Romantic feelings aside, you need to come to terms with how valuable this friendship is to you. If she were to reject your romantic interests, would you truly be okay with that? And be fine continuing on as just friends?

If you really do love her, whether romantically or platonically, you’ll value her happiness. This means understanding that if she doesn’t feel the same way about you, you won’t

  • get upset with her for it.
  • ultimatum her (ultimatums aren’t sexy).
  • accuse her of “leading you on”.
  • suggest that she owes you any special favors because you’ve been such a “nice guy”.

Now that you understand your role as a gentleman and as her friend, how do you go about actually telling her?

Don’t Play Games

I think the best way is to do it over text. This gives her a fair chance to process the new idea that you, a platonic guy friend, have a romantic interest in her. It also gives her a safe space and allows her to respond when she feels comfortable.

It’s also kind of hot. Waiting on the response. Seeing your love letter marked as read. Watching the three dots bounce across your screen as you anticipate her response. The heart-pounding wonder of how she’ll respond. Taking the risk.

Just message her one evening, when she’s home and done for the day. Tell her, “Hey I need to tell you something.” She’s your friend so she’ll be concerned with what you have to tell her. Then just follow up in the most honest way possible, and tell her exactly how you feel.

You could make your move when you’re with her. Just be ready for the awkward moment that follows if she rejects you. I promise you its really not that bad and I’ll share a story later in this article.

But whether you tell her over text or make your bold move in person, you need to be both respectful and open with her. You need to make yourself vulnerable.

I know that’s different from what the guys might tell you, or what some dating coach might say. But in my experience at least, being vulnerable with her really is the best way. There’s no need to “play the game” with her. Not only does it show that you value her friendship, but it also gives you the best chance of winning her heart.

Handling Rejection

You just might get lucky enough to date her. But like I said, rejection is a likely outcome, and that’s okay! It may feel awkward when you see her again. But it really is not as bad as you think. It’s only as awkward as you make it.

Now here’s that story I promised.

Romantic Feelings Misread

I had a lady friend. While I always found her attractive, we were just friends and had never discussed any romantic feelings between us. I never told her that I had an interest in dating her.

We hadn’t seen each other in a while, so we decided to catch up over coffee one evening. I picked her up from her house, and we ended up in a pretty romantic small coffee shop. It started off casual, but as the evening went on, our energy seemed to be getting more intimate. We were having deep conversation about emotion, relationships, and love.

I paid for our coffee tab, and this certainly felt like a date. When we got back into my car, it was silent for a moment. And I felt that there was something there between us. Maybe she had those same feelings for me. So, I slowly leaned in to kiss her. And guess what? She pulled away.

“Oh, um, are you okay?” she asked.

“Oh yeah, uh, sorry I… did you wanna kiss?” I responded.

“Um, nooo….” she said.

Yes, it felt awkward. And we still had a 20-minute drive back to her house. But you know what? I apologized and laughed it off. And we laughed it off together. The next time I saw her, we had another deep conversation about life & love.

She jokingly asked me, “Remember that time you tried to kiss me and I totally shot you down?”

In laughter, I replied “Yes and you broke my heart that night!”

We joked as we tossed around the idea of dating each other. She thanked me for sharing my interest in her, and said she really just likes being friends. And I was okay with that. I’m glad I had that fun little experience in expressing my feelings. Even if it was a bit awkward for a moment.

She moved and we grew apart over the years. But if I see her again, I know we’ll have that same playful energy in our friendship.

So, if you do get rejected, don’t take it so seriously. Certainly don’t take it personally. Enjoy the fun life experience of taking a risk with her, and laugh it off. You can still be friends and joke about it together! And it might even lead to something down the road!

Feria’s Last Call

Take a chance with her. Even if she does respond with rejection, at least you’ll know. And because she knows you’re interested now; she might slowly begin to see you in that romantic light. She may come around later. And because you were a gentleman and respected her decision; you’ll have a real chance with her if she ever does come to develop those same feelings for you.

If you really do feel strongly about her, you’ll have the patience to respect her heart, continue being her friend, and sticking around to find out if she’ll come to like you later. All while being free to see other women.■

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