No matter what people tell you, yes—guys and girls can just be friends. But sometimes, when you get close enough to someone, your own feelings may change. It may not have been love at first sight, but it’s something much stronger. Through your friendship, you started finding them incredibly attractive. The question then arises: how to tell a girl you like her?
The best part about crushing on a friend is that it could go both ways. At this point, you like them just enough to be happy they’re in your life. And since you’ve already had the “friend” title for some time, it’s a role you’re used to. Still, you know it’d probably be the best relationship you’ve ever had if they happen to reciprocate those feelings, especially since you’re already comfortable with each other.
So, how do you try and make the move without sabotaging your close bond? Try out a few of these tips if you don’t want to wreck what you already have.
How to tell a girl you like her
Ask her to grab a coffee
Make a point to ask her to go somewhere with you one-on-one, without other friends. Try to schedule it in the afternoon, to take away some of the “date” aura around it. Her reaction will tell you a lot—if she makes excuses, she’s probably not too interested. But if she seems surprised and says yes, there’s a chance the feelings may be reciprocated. The best part about this tactic is that it’s just coffee. People get coffee all the time.
Make eye contact and smile
It seems like a no-brainer, but women catch these subtle cues. When you make eye contact, you prove you’re locked into them. With a smile, you’re saying you enjoy their company. If they reciprocate your feelings, they might do the same in return. Always focus on body language, since it often says more than words.
Tell her how you have no clue how she’s single
A line like this is a huge compliment, and also a way to tell her that you think she’s girlfriend material. As a response, she might get a little self-deprecating, especially if she’s been unattached for a while. Continue being positive. If the time is right, an “I’ve always had a little crush on you” might fit in well.
Downplay it a little bit
Know how I mentioned “little crush”? Even if you have a massive crush on her, the intensity may scare her away. Small crushes can easily evaporate into nothing. Don’t make her worry too much by telling her you’ve been thinking about her every day and night. This is why it’s often best to let crushes know how you feel in the beginning since you’re less likely to get hurt if you didn’t invest all that much time, and you’d be honest when you say it’s just developing.
Say there’s “no pressure,” but you think she’s really cool
In all honesty, some women may back away from men if they have no romantic interest in them after knowing there’s a crush involved. It’s just a kind way to spare feelings, and give you time to get over her. If your crush is severe, this break may be just what you need. But if your crush is fairly new, things don’t necessarily have to change all that much. Don’t pressure her or back her into a corner with your feelings. Just letting her know you think she’s cool will put the ball in her court.
Don’t make any big, public scenes
Yeah, girls like romantic movies where guys make a big scene over how in love they are. But, this is just a crush—and if you don’t know how she feels, you can really end up embarrassing her. If she’s only viewing you as a friend, this would be the perfect way to kill any sort of relationship, as it’ll be ingrained in her mind forever and hard for her to get over. Keep it between the two of you. If the feelings are mutual and you end up dating, you’ll have plenty of moments for the grand gestures.
Try to ask through a mutual friend
It seems a little childish, but when you’re trying to figure out how to tell a girl you like her, it’s actually pretty convenient if you have a mutual friend. Since the friend has no emotional involvement, they can help feel out the situation for you in order to see if announcing your crush will work in your favor. Since the girl won’t have to face you directly, things may not be as awkward moving forward if she’s not feeling the same way.
Ask her directly, not through text
Texting is easier, yes. But when you tell someone face-to-face, you’ll get the best clue as to how they actually feel. Plus, it’s possible they won’t see your text in time, or worse, miss it altogether. When you’re physically next to someone you like, you know that the message will get across as intended.
Tell her how you feel, but then give her space to think it over
It’s possible she’s simply never thought of you that way before—and if that’s the case, this may be hard for her to process at first. She may need some time to think it over. Let her know that she can take all the time she needs, but if she doesn’t feel the same, you understand. In short, keep it casual. Within that space, don’t text her 15 times a day for an answer.
Note that if she keeps things open-ended for longer than intended, it’s fine to move on and form other crushes. She may like the idea of you liking her, but doesn’t like you back—and in that case, it’s important that she doesn’t hold your feelings hostage.
Understand that things may very well change for a little
There are no guarantees in life. When you tell a girl you’re crushing on her, she may automatically view you differently, thus modifying the friendship a little bit. If you see a future, just know that your honesty was worth it. And if she’s a real keeper of a friend, she’ll understand that you took a big risk. If she feels the same way, it’s possible things may eventually part ways in the future if you break up, so no matter what, your action will have a reaction.
It’s a big step to admit you like someone, especially if the two of you are close. But the best relationships really do stem from sincere friendships, so it’s not the worst idea to be honest with your feelings. When it comes to knowing how to tell a girl you like her, even if you’re feeling a little scared, it’s much better to put yourself out there than hide your real emotions. If you never admit your crush, you may always wonder what could have been.