Should I Date My Best Friend? Why and Why Not
- Should You Date Your Best Friend?
- Signs You Should Date Your Best Friend
- Asking a Friend on a Date: Do's and Don'ts
- How to Date Your Best Friend
Only one step separates friendship from love. By and large (and according to psychological research), friendship is the same as love, but excluding the sexual component. Moreover, studies show that love relationships, in which the partners don’t consider each other to be the best friends, have the most unreliable long-term prognosis. For a relationship to last for a long time, partners must not only want each other but also be friends. Here is an unexpected fact: a study by psychologist Laura Vanderdrift from Purdue University showed that for the quality of relationships, it is not only important whether the partners are friends but also whether they value friendship in general.
Then, it is logical to assume that it is the best course of actions to start a relationship and marry your best friend - why should you look for someone else if all the most important features of a good relationship (mutual attraction, closeness, openness, respect, support, pleasure received from time spent together) are already there, in your friendship? And yet there are differences between just friendship and friendship that can grow into love. Today we will discuss just that. Should I date my best friend? Will dating your best friend lead to a wonderful relationship, or will it just ruin this strong friendship you have? First off, let’s answer the following question, should best friends date?
Should You Date Your Best Friend?
Let's face it. Every girl has a male friend whom she would not mind dating. At first, you just have a good time together, but then you realize that you start falling in love with him. Many girls think that these feelings are one-sided, but they are not. And in fact, this is no secret at this point really that many guys are deeply offended by such a scenario, which is called “friend zone”. You cannot speak about your feelings out loud, because you may ruin your friendship, and you are waiting for her to make the first move, yet she does the same, and there is no end to it.
So, the first problem you may encounter is being shy and afraid of suggesting such a relationship. You don’t know how to date a friend, you are doubting yourself in everything. You simply don’t know how to ask a friend out on a date. It is quite likely that a lot of things are at stake in case of failure. You think that since you are so close and you like each other so much, it will probably be much easier for you to trust this person. Yet it isn’t as easy as you think.
And even if so, let’s say you have been successful in it. Do not forget that the transition from friendship to a deeper relationship may not always lead to the result you expect.
You may have to hide it from your mutual friends, sex will feel weird, and really, you know a lot of things about the person, and there are two ways of possible negative development in this case. First – there is nothing new to find in that person, there is no intrigue in what is to come. Second – maybe, just maybe, that you will find many new things, but they will reveal an unpleasant part of a person that you haven’t known before.
So, in short, before going on a date with a friend, evaluate all the pros and cons. Can that person really handle such an offer? Do I trust that person? Am I doing it because I have no other options?
Signs You Should Date Your Best Friend
Now let’s get to something more positive, away from fear and stress. Here are some signs that you should date your best friend:
Attraction to the best friend is overwhelmingly intriguing - you have been together for so many years, know so many secrets about each other, why spoil such a close friendship with sex? Often, couples whose relationships began with friendship, live in harmony for decades. Who knows, maybe you will be among them. Here are our 5 signs that you should go for it:
1. You know each other very well: you know that he is comfortable in silence, you know which color is his favorite and he remembers that you don’t like chocolate milk and cats. He knows that you are sick of sushi and that for a plate of lasagna you are ready to sell your soul to the devil. You know that he does not like to shave his beard, he knows that you love to listen to Alice in Chains. There are simply so many things that you know about each other, you are less likely to find yourself in a disagreement over small and unimportant things.
2. Your family loves him: Your mother always said that he is a nice boy. She always invited him for a dinner and she has been hoping that one day you will get together. Parents know that he is “a good boy,” and, most likely, nobody will be surprised at your union. It is quite likely that they have been waiting for this for several years.
3. Perhaps your attraction is mutual, but each of you is afraid to destroy what has been created over the years of trusted secrets, subtle humor and friendly hugs. You were in a relationship, then he had a girlfriend, and you continued to be friends, not daring to admit to yourself that this was not just friendship for a long time. When you finally step forward to each other, it will magical. So many years of waiting and stored passion have been waiting for a release.
4. He feels your mood: yes, you really can't fool him. He will immediately feel that you are dissatisfied with something or that something oppresses you. And he will not shower you with questions but will help you with everything he has.
5. You are neither able to find a partner nor really want to: you have a man’s shoulder, on which you can lean upon, and the only thing between you that is absent is sex. So why run away from yourself and your own feelings if you can be happy here and now?
Asking a Friend on a Date: Do's and Don'ts
1. Don’t go too hard with flirting. It can be difficult asking out a friend right after you have been crying on each other’s shoulders for several years and having a good time. Flirting is a good way to explore if you are internally ready for failure. It is important to pay attention not only to whether he flirts back, but also to whether he does not say such things to others. But be subtle, don’t rush it.
2. Make sure he is the right friend. There is a big difference between the best friend and those with whom it is fun to go to parties together. The first case is better suited for building a romantic relationship since you most likely already know each other quite well. In the second case, the unpleasant features of his character can suddenly open up to you.
3. Be honest. A friend you trust seems like a good option. But besides trust and a sense of security, there are still many important points. For example, sexual attractiveness and the desire to be together, as well as the reliability of the partner and the absence, for example, of unpleasant statements from his ex-girlfriends. It is important that your goals coincide. If he understands your feelings, then you are fine.
4. Know what is at stake. There is no worse way to spoil a good friendship. It’s just that. Both of you can be very rational about things, but the aftertaste will always be there. Yet if your friendship is really strong, it will outlast everything.
5. Do not tell your friends. At least at first. As long as your relationship develops, you don’t need to tell your friends about this whole thing. Then, when you have settled your personal problems, you may let them into this new relationship.
6. Be supportive. Such a “plot twist” of life can be quite stressful to many. Yet even if you are feeling some pressure about it, be sure to help your best friend with it. Say that he should not care about other people and that the only two people that matter in this world there are you two.
How to Date Your Best Friend
Now as the question of “can best friends date?” is behind us and you are dating, well then, first off, my congratulations. You’ve had enough courage to do what many people are afraid to do. So many people suffer each day because they cannot find mutual love in a relationship. But then again, how to date your best friend?
What about the first date with a friend? Choose new places for your dates and try to be alone, that is, without any possible friends seeing you, so that no one influences your relationship, which is already in its infancy. Remember that you have mutual friends who may perceive your idea differently and be prepared for the fact that some will not approve of it. They will not be right, yet they aren’t being evil or anything like that, they are just shocked and worried. So, be sure to think of some best friend date ideas and figure out something new that your beloved friend will enjoy.
What about love? Love partners have much more common plans and goals for the future than friends. When relationships have already lasted for some time and can turn into something serious, people usually discuss with each other their ideas and dreams about the future, as well as their values and beliefs that may affect this future. These are ideas about gender roles, desire/unwillingness to get married and have children, religious beliefs, financial habits, and plans, plans for work and study, plans to live in one place or move. Even if you radically disagree on some things, it’s fine: people change, and there will always be time for him to change his mind, or maybe, just maybe, the same can happen to you. And even if a close friend is going to go to study or work for two years in another country, you will certainly be bored, but it’s fine, it’s two years - you will correspond with each other, chat on Skype, sometimes visit each other.
Also, don’t forget about various commitments. Psychologists say that this is actually the most important factor that distinguishes love from friendship. People do not just spend time together - they decide to be together and agree on something, including the long-term commitment. Friends do not have such obligations to each other. Partners are ready (at least to try) to maintain their relationship, even if difficulties arise, and to work on relationships, if necessary (although our columnist recently explained to us that working on relationships is a myth). It is a commitment in everything: sex, freedom, finance, and future in general. Such a drastic change may be unnoticed and unrealized by your partner at first, which can lead to some awful consequences down the line. So, before you enter a proper relationship, sit down and talk about all the things to come. The more you talk about it – the better, so as not to surprise each other down the line.
Honestly, this is a hard place to be at. Being conflicted and afraid. You always have to think which is more important to you, to maintain a good friendship or to try to express your sincere feelings. Yeah, it’s quite rough, but there are ways around it, it’s not the end of the world. In any case, be sincere to others, be sincere to yourself and Godspeed.