How to Cope with Being “Just Friends”: A Guide

This guide is going to be gender specific, but not because I’m sexist. That’s Kent, the other TTM founder/writer/bachelor extraordinaire. This guide is going to be gender specific because I am a dude, have always been a dude, and will always be a dude (barring some sort of horrifying punishment from God). I’m going to ASSume that this guide will be applicable to chicks too, but I’m sure that girl that put Kent in his place on that other article (Jen, you’re my hero!) will be able to tell me if I’m wrong or not. Here goes.

We’ve all been there before. There’s a girl. Let’s call her Michelle. That’s a hot name, but not like crazy, inaccessible hot. Michelle’s not just any girl. She’s smart, sweet, funny – gosh is she funny! – and caring. She’s an angel. When she came into your life, it’s like the sun was shining for the first time. And she’s a babe too, oh yes she is. She’s more beautiful than any woman you’ve ever seen, even in the movies or those Victoria’s Secret catalogs you stole from your sister. The two of you are inseparable. You hang out all the time, laughing, falling into piles of leaves, staring up at the stars as you talk about dreams of the future, and misreading each others signals and intentions. It’s just magical. You’re best friends, but you know that’s not all there is to it. Destiny put you two together when she sat next to you in math class/bumped into you at youth group/spilled a searing hot coffee on you at Starbucks, causing a piercing girl-scream to erupt from your mouth followed by an impressive repertoire of vulgarities. It was like something out of the movies; how could it end up as anything other than life-long love and the production of numerous fat, happy babies? You’re just biding your time until she looks longingly into your eyes and whispers “I want to know what love is. I want you to show me.” Oh man, how sweet that will be when it inevitably happens! But until then, how do you bide your time?

Step One: Grin and Bear It
Girls are stupid. Everybody knows that. Especially about love. You see, she loves you but she doesn’t know that she loves you even though it’s like totally obvious to you. You’ve got to hang around and give her time to figure it out. Besides, being friends isn’t so bad is it? You still get to spend time with your dream girl. And since she’s so comfortable (a.k.a. “in love”) with you, you get to do really fun (a.k.a. “torturously sexual”) things like give each other massages and rub sun-tan lotion on each others backs at the beach.
“What? No way Michelle, that bikini doesn’t make your butt look fat. Sure I’ll look. You want to try on a few others? Yeah, no problem. I’ll definitely tell you which one makes your figure look best.”

So coy! She doesn’t know what she’s doing… She knows exactly what she’s doing. She can’t possibly think you’re asexual, right?! Come on! She’s not naive. No way. You may feel like punching yourself in the face until you’re officially concussed, but it’s 100% worth it. Just remember: delayed gratification. Patience.

Step Two: Drop Hints About Your True Feelings
Since she’s so oblivious to her own feelings, she might need you to leave a trail of breadcrumbs for her to follow home. Home being her love for you, of course. It has to be clear enough that she’ll see it, but not so clear that it will be creepy and push her away. Some ideas:
1.) If you’re talking about the kind of people that you could see yourself marrying, describe her. Exactly. Even use her name. And then say something like “It’s so weird, how like, that’s so much like you, right? I mean, that’s probably why we’re such good friends!!! Ha ha ha!” Subtle, yet effective.
2.) When a romantic song comes on the radio, tell her that it makes you think of her. Gauge her reaction. If she looks uncomfortable, cover your tracks: “But like, not in a romantic way or anything. Unless you’re into that. Then it’s in a romantic way. But if not that’s totally cool and we’re just friends and I don’t practice asking you to marry me every day.” So covert, it’s almost subliminal.
3.) Ask her to every school dance/formal event that comes up. She’ll probably wait to give you an answer. Some might say it’s because she wants to see if anyone else will ask. They might say that you’re just a last resort. They obviously don’t know what the hell they’re talking about, do they? Again, she’s clearly in denial about her feelings for you. When she says “Okay, but just as friends,” nonchalantly respond “Yeah, of course. What else could it be?” That’ll confuse her real good. First comes confusion, then hopeless infatuation. Just a matter of time.

Step Three: Sabotage, Sabotage, Sabotage
Little miss “I love to kid myself” will probably talk about other boys she’s interested in order to try to pretend that your relationship is only platonic. Nice try, Houdini, but we’re not falling for that illusion! Nevertheless, you need to do everything you can to shed a negative light on every single guy she talks about. Not because you’re worried that they actually have a chance, of course! It’s really just to continue to prove how you’re the best man for the job. Potential scenarios:
1.) Her: Oh, John is so dreamy.
You: John? He’s gay. Serious. Saw him reading Cosmo. And then he said he likes Friends.
Her: That doesn’t really mean he’s gay.
You: Well, after that I saw him kiss a dude. No wait, two dudes. Yeah. Two. At once. Super gay.
2.) Her: Donald is such a nice guy.
You: He punched my grandmother once.
Her: (laughing)
You: (tearing up) How could you laugh at that? She died.
Her: I… I didn’t know. (holds you)
You: (thinking to yourself) Cha-ching!
3.) Her: I’m really glad Mike is in my life.
You: Total douche.
Her: He’s my brother.
You: Still. Douche.

That will show her that no man could ever measure up to your greatness and security.

And finally, you have to have The Insurance Policy. Just in case the unthinkable happens and she doesn’t realize that she’s completely in love with you, make a pact with her. It should read something like this: “If both of us are still unmarried by age , then we’ll marry each other.” The earlier the age, the better. It should be written. Get her to sign it. And notarize it. Make it presentable in court. But honestly, it won’t be necessary. Just hold the line. She’ll come around any day now. They always (never) do!


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