By now, the pattern is well known, two people meet, they are not looking for anything serious, they have a good time, get close, and then fall in love. It sounds like any basic romantic movie, a classic trope that always tugs our hearts. But what about one-sided love? What happens when two people who’ve established their relationship are platonic, yet one party falls in love with the other? Does that mean a friendship between a male and a female doesn’t exist due to this possibility?
Before you conclude and assume that this article is perpetuating a stereotype, let me say that a male and female can be the best of friends without becoming a couple later. In this article, based on my personal experience and a couple of my friends, I’ll dissect what went wrong, how we keep falling into the same mistake repeatedly, and how this repeated habit surprisingly has a cure. However (again, don’t assume judgment), what makes one friend fall in love with the other even if it doesn’t work out, and that party wants any relationship then? Is it love or a challenge, desperation, or comfort?
Also, I’d like to clarify this article isn’t an attack on someone who fell in love with their BFF and eventually ended up together. That's great, but tormented souls are angry at their hearts for smiling back at a text. I hear you, I feel you, and just know that you’re not alone nor a traitor for having those mixed feelings, so let’s take a deep breath and see what led us here.
1. Analyze your Feelings
To understand how a friendship ends in love and hiding feelings from the person you care about, you must take a step back, be honest, and be your guide. A reliable friend or sibling must see that you're being too biased. What made you reach that point? Was it a specific incident? Have you mistaken a friendly gesture for a romantic one?
Facing feelings and inner fears takes loads of spunk, so we turn into avoiding them, suppressing as much as we can, and gaslighting our minds and hearts to trick us from exploring what truly lies inside, but it’s a necessary move. Nonetheless, it won’t be easy, it will take time, but it will be worth it because you will be able to decide if…
2. Your Feelings Were Real, or You Like Reaching the Unreachable.
Let’s get real and messy; sometimes, not always, but we like to chase things out of reach. We like the challenge of not letting anything stop you from having true love, but let’s look at it differently. Will your feeling stay the same or the adrenaline rush?
Most movies, shows, and even songs tell us that you must do your best, go the extra mile, and keep trying until they love you back. To an extent, it is a harmful trope that perpetuates refusing consent and not taking no for an answer. For example, in the notebook, Allie keeps telling Noah that she doesn’t want to go out with him but is framed as having true love. She isn’t fully aware that her soulmate is standing before her. The bottom line, self-awareness is vital. Do you want them, or are you crazy about that chase?
3. Know Your Emotional and Mental State.
Repeat After Me: Context Matters
Rewind to when you started seeing your best friend as a potential lover. Were you going through a rough patch? Have you been in a toxic relationship after receiving the proper treatment you deserve after that breakup with your best friend accidentally manifested from a feeling of gratitude and thankfulness for love and partnership?
Does the societal and parental pressure of seeking a relationship after seeing many relatives getting engaged or tying the knot make you feel inadequate?
Has this made you succumb by letting your feelings guide you without rationale or reason?
Again, these situations are examples, but they can give a little bit of understanding to your current situation.
So now, what's the main takeaway?
Well, for starters, no one is at fault here, we are all going through different phases, and each stage has its battles, so it’s ok to feel lost.
Second, which is the summary of the article, you have to face yourself. No matter how hard it gets, you deserve to heal, to remove any confusion and agony. Once you understand what you’re going through, you’ll be the master of your fate.