What To Do When You’re Falling In Love With Your Best Friend: Tips | BetterHelp

Updated October 6, 2022 by BetterHelp Editorial Team

If you have romantic feelings for or even feel like you're falling in love with a friend and are struggling with how to handle the situation, you're not alone.

It's a story that has made Hollywood millions over the years and one that almost all human beings have experienced at some point in their lives. A simple, platonic friendship slowly turns into something more for one of the platonic friends, leaving them caught in a struggle between acting on their romantic feelings and pretending those emotions don't exist to maintain the current relationship. And that raises the question: what should you do when you realize you're falling in love with a friend?

When You Get Close to A Friend, Your Feelings Can Change to Romantic Ones

Evaluate Your Feelings

If you believe your strong feelings for a best girl or best guy friend have turned romantic, the best first action you can take is to intentionally, and objectively, analyze those feelings and personalized content about the platonic friendship to clarify within yourself what you are experiencing. Is what you're feeling truly romantic love? It is common for platonic friends to fall in love and become romantic partners, but if you think you are romantically attracted to your friend, it is important to sift through your feelings of friendship and potential true love. Be honest with yourself.

Or a strong physical attraction or infatuation can lead you to imagine romantic, intimate moments with them. It can be helpful to spend time considering the source of these feelings and not immediately act upon them before you complicate things. You may feel like, “I am in love with my best friend.” Friends fall in love frequently because it can be human nature to fall in love with someone that you already feel close with, but before you fast forward and figure out in real life if your friend loves you in the same way about the same things, it is important to look through your feelings and talk with others. Often, someone can mistake true love with deep friendship. If you feel like your friendship with this person is different and stronger than with other girls or guys, it is normal to be afraid of getting hurt, or maybe you realize that things happen, and you are not afraid of being hurt. Still, if you feel like your friendship can be something more, you already fell in love, and this is just the way it is, it still makes sense to take a breath and think it through before you tell them that you fell in love.

One wise strategy is to commit to writing about your thoughts, feelings, and personalized content daily, for at least a couple weeks, if not longer. Then, all of these emotions can be realized, put into words, and reflected upon. Use this time to literally release every past thought, attitude, intention, expectation, and feeling you recognize as you ponder your girl or boy friend, your interactions, your feelings, and what has happened. Set a consistent time each day to write, even for only 10 to 15 minutes. You do not need to have a specific agenda. Just write whatever comes to mind: how your feel, what hurts, what you wonder. Think of this as a kind of emotional, and cognitive, dumping of what is in you, onto paper. Allow at least several days to elapse before you go back to read what you have recorded. But then, once you have allowed those couple of weeks to pass, review what you have expressed from the beginning. This could illuminate additional perspectives that will help you feel more confident in your decision about whether or not to be open with your best girl or best guy friend about your changing feelings.

Make a Decision

Once you've given yourself time to analyze your feelings and personalized content and are confident that the feelings you have are romantic, the next decision is whether to tell your best friend how you feel. Of course, this won’t happen in one night. This can be its own hell as you consider all the possible outcomes of this scenario. It can be helpful to remember that they are your best friend who cares about you, and that friendships can withstand more than you’re scared of. What body language do you notice compared to yours? Which one of you usually the one to initiate interactions? Do they appear to treat you differently than other friends? 

It's important to understand that there's no guarantee how your best girl or best guy friend feels regardless of whether their behavior may indicate a potential romantic connection. At the end of the day, it comes down to your own best judgment of the potential outcomes of deciding to divulge or withhold your feelings and personalized content. And there’s always the possibility that you’re reading the situation wrong. Consider all the outcomes that are possible if you tell them:

  • Your friend feels the same way as you, and you end up in a loving, romantic relationship;
  • Your friend feels the same way as you, but romantic relationshipswith friendsdoesn't work out for you two.
  • Your friend does not reciprocate your feelings and your best friendship remains strong;
  • Your friend does not reciprocate your feelings and great friendship changes.

While this may be a painful choice in the short term, it can surely lead to a stronger friendship in the end.

Talking through your thoughts, feelings, and personalized content with one or two trusted, wise friends may be advisable at any point in this process. Sometimes it can be very valuable to solicit input from friends who are able to be more objective than you can be since your emotions are involved; they can explain uncomfortable truths that you might miss on your own. Just be sure to use your own wisdom in selecting such confidants. Take note: everyone is not equally safe and trustworthy. So whenever choosing a source of wise counsel, review your history with that person to confirm that they have proven themselves to be confidential, respectful, and understanding. At the same time, it is likely to be additionally valuable for this confident to know both you and the best friend for whom you have developed romantic feelings.

Finally, once you've considered these options and talked through them with a trusted friend, do any stand out to you? Does one feel like it's more "bearable" than others? Does one option seem less crazy? Is there a “best” and “worst” option? If so, that may be the best course of action based on the information at hand.

Act on Your Decision

When You Get Close to A Friend, Your Feelings Can Change to Romantic Ones

Now that you’ve thought through all of the options (whether it’s been a few weeks or more than three years), it’s time to act. If you have chosen to keep your feelings and personalized content to yourself, do so confidently, accepting that you are the one who owns this decision; and you have made it after reasonable consideration. Take intentional steps to help yourself minimize your feelings for your best friend. This is certainly easier than done, but there are actions you can choose which can be helpful for you.

For instance, you may want to reduce your interactions with this best friend for a while. You do not have to be overly obvious about your decision. Be creative, knowing that your intention is not to be deceptive, but to do what is possible for you to take appropriate responsibility for your thoughts and feelings, and handle them maturely. Even if you don’t get your friend in bed at the end of the day, make decisions and statements that you can be proud of. This can be mutually respectful, meaning that it illustrates respect for both yourself and the other person, without being at the expense of either of you.

Choose to not dwell on your feelings and personalized content. Once you have decided to not take other action, you only ask for pain by ruminating on thoughts and feelings that are not returned. Use healthy distractions to keep your mind occupied. These might include:

  • spending more time with other close friends (especially those who help you laugh, and embrace life);
  • investing more time and energy in a favorite hobby or pastime;
  • engage in physical activities which release endorphins to improve your mood, increase your energy, and help you sleep better;
  • continue with that daily writing we mentioned above. This is a really effective way to minimize intrusive, haunting thoughts.

Use the journaling you used to help clarify your internal reality, to create a written communication. 

Try to not have any specific expectations of the result. This is really impossible for you to know in advance. So hope for a positive response, while remaining aware that you could receive something less encouraging.  But that is all you can control.

Falling in love with a friend can be especially hard since the outcome is both unknown and has the possibility of permanently changing your existing friendship and relationship as described in the less previous article. However, if you're struggling with what to do there are resources that can help, including personalized content. Connecting with a counselor, even for a short time, can help you have an unbiased understanding of your situation and provide you with advice on the best course of action for your specific situation through personalized content. Check out an online site like BetterHelp.com to see if connecting with a counselor for personalized content is what you need to help you work through your romantic feelings for a friend.

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Realizing you may be developing romantic feelings for a friend can be an overwhelming experience. The excitement of the potential between you comes with the fear of losing someone meaningful. A professional can guide you through this process, helping you understand your emotions so you can make the best decisions. Take the first step today.

Below are some commonly and more frequently asked questions on this topic:

  1. What should I do if I’m in love with my best friend?
  2. Is it healthy to be in love with your best friend?
  3. . Is falling in love with your best friend common?
  4. How do I stop falling in love with my best friend?
  5. Can 2 best friends fall in love?
  6. How do I know if my best friend is in love with me?
  7. Can best friends kiss on lips?
  8. Can best friends kiss each other?
  9. Do best friends cuddle?
  10. Should I tell me best friend I’m in love with her?

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