I've fallen in love with my best friend. Should I risk everything and tell her?

Lauren Gray

Dear Lauren, 
I’ve grown very close to one of my best friends. We talk for at least 2 hours everyday on the phone. But, she has a boyfriend. I know that if I’m patient she and I might get closer, but we only have one year of college left. Sometimes I feel she might like me back. She says she misses me when she doesn’t see me and puts her head on my shoulder. I love my friendship with her, and I wouldn’t want to ruin that. But I want to be her boyfriend. What can I do? Should I risk everything and tell her? Or should I just ignore it and move on somehow? 

Dear Stephen,
Can men and women really be just friends?

This kind of thing happens all the time. It’s practically a right of passage for a young man. The movie “When Harry Met Sally” made a pretty convincing case study for the whole “men and women can’t be just friends” argument; they’re always going to end up in the sack or broken up.

I personally don’t agree with the severity of this theory in the slightest. A friendship between men and women is totally possible; it just takes more communication and clearer boundaries to keep it in line.

But it certainly is natural for a boy to fall in love with his best friend. If a man finds his female friend attractive, he will always be curious about taking it to the next level. It just makes sense; you care for her, you love being with her and you’re attracted to her.

While a girl can be satisfied with this and this alone, a man will automatically think, “Wouldn’t it be great if we could be romantic too?” Every time she tells you she misses you, she means it. But unlike you, a woman can miss and adore you and NOT want something more.

Such a tease!

This is a classic misunderstanding between the genders. You might see every time she touches you as an invitation for more touching. She may feel that putting her head on your shoulder is as innocent as a smile.

The danger of being a woman and being affectionate with a man is that he may see it as her “leading him on” or “being a tease.” As long as you understand that she does all this innocently and because she trusts you, you can avoid the usual anger and resentment that men tend to feel in the face of a “tease.”

It’s important to not have any anger or resentment in your heart when and if she doesn’t reciprocate your feelings. Because it’s not like you made a deal and she fell short. She never promised you anything more than to be your friend.

To tell her or not to tell her?

I must break some news. There is no way you can get over someone when you still have hope that they might come around. So, I suggest that you enlighten her with your feelings and face the results, whatever they might be.

Let me settle your stomach by letting you know that you are NOT risking everything. In fact, my best friend made a move on me once and while it was extremely awkward for about two weeks, once the boundaries of our friendship were re-established it went right back to normal. Today we are closer than ever.

While I love, respect and adore him, I do not recommend you follow directly in his footsteps. Rather than go in for an uninvited kiss, try talking to her about your feelings. First establish that you have no expectations of her to reciprocate your feelings. With no pressure over her head she is more likely to listen to you with an open heart.

Confession of love script

Tell her:
I care about you deeply. Being with you in any way makes me happy. I can’t deny that I’ve developed romantic feelings for you and I want to be your boyfriend. I know you have a man already and I support you completely. I love being your best friend and I just needed to let you know.”
You have put no pressure on her and yet by being so heartfelt you have invited her to open up about her feelings as well. She may tell you that she looks at you like a brother or that she’s happy in her current relationship. But know that you have planted a seed that may very well grow into something special later on.

It takes some serious balls to do what I’m suggesting but I promise you that you will feel lighter and happier once you’ve confronted this. It may be because she reciprocates your feelings and has been waiting for you to make your move. Or it may be because you finally get your answer and you can move on.


By letting go of your hope, don’t be surprised if you let go of a few things in your friendship too.

For example: instead of talking to her for hours on the phone, you may start to focus your game on a new girl who piques your interest.

The friendship will not suffer but it may change as you begin to have new priorities.

You say you have one more year of school left like it’s some kind of deadline. It’s not. Boyfriends and girlfriends will melt into your past and be forgotten. But best friends stick around forever, no matter how much distance and time you’ve spent apart.

With love,
Now I’d love to hear from you!
Do you think men and women can be just friends?
Do you have a friend of the opposite sex who you can be affectionate with without it getting sexual? How do you do it?

If you dug this article, please SHARE it with your friends! Click to tweet: How to jump out of the friend zone and into a relationship. (No awkwardness necessary) 

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read more blog posts from Lauren Gray
  • honey123
     6/8/2015 9:15:24 AM
    So I have this huge crush/like situation going on with one of my best friends and I don't think he likes me back ans we are so close.
  • 20 years of keeping it in.
     10/27/2014 10:59:27 AM
    Lauren, I recently found you and desperately need some advice. This might be lengthy, so please bear with me.. More than twenty five years ago I became friends with a girl, one day while at a friends house we kissed, and honestly all these years later It was the best kiss I ever had. this happened a few times but we never actually dated but I always liked being around her. A couple of years pass and one day she asked me about a friend of mine, reluctantly I set them up but was worried for her because I knew him well and felt he would not be good to her. He went to college hours away and when he was not around, me and his now girlfriend would hang out at my house, watching movies having dinner and talking for hours,and sleeping in the same bed. as time passed I could feel that I was growing very attached to her, at the same time I knew that her boyfriend was being unfaithful, doing drugs, and drinking excessively to the point of arrests. This continued for a few years. She was always my best friend and knows things about me that I have never shared with anyone else. another few years pass, I witness her boyfriend cheat on her, and get really into gambling and hard drugs, I am torn because I don't want to be a rat but by this point I am fully in love.and don't want that to be my "justification" for telling her. later still they decide to buy a house and she asks me to move into the third floor, her boyfriend tells me that she would not allow this for any body else, just me. For three years I would come home the boyfriend was almost always drunk or not there at all the entire night, again I know that he cheats.Many of those nights I would sit on the floor of her room and talk with her or just watch tv, and was very happy to do so. One day after they arrived home from vacation she shows me the engagement ring he bought for her, I was totally crushed, I knew I had to move on so I stared seeing someone just to get out of the house. I unknowingl...
  • GeorgeTheBassist
     8/2/2014 5:28:51 PM
    Dear Lauren, Right so I'm kinda a bit of a predicament. I guess I shall just head into to it and see what your advice is. Hi, I'm George. I'm a bassist in a punk band of 3 members and we are all incredibly close friends, me, jack and Hannah. But I tend to be closer to Hannah than jack in the outside world; we meet up a lot more and skate/ go record hunting/ general activities from roaming the streets of cities to sitting by the lake and reminiscing about life. Now I should tell you something's about Hannah. She is the most un-female person on the planet. She's the biggest tom boy ever, no exaggeration. So yes, a couple weeks ago, whilst on one of our little escapades to the local river bed, I decided to bring up a thought of having marital reserves. And so we came to the agreement of if by the time we are both 40 we would marry together. It has only been recently that I've really realised how much I seriously love her. She's just the perfect girl for me. We are basically the same person in most aspects but there is one problem. I'm not sexually attracted to her at all and I know she is the same to me. As a Christian this doesn't really faze me as sexual attraction isn't very important in love. I really know 100% that I want to spend the rest of my life with her, I know this completely. I'd die for her, I'd kill for her. Id change anything about myself for her . But I have some worries Because she is this whole tom boy person, she has absolutely no clue what love is and what it means and so I don't want to scare her. I really, really love her. Seriously so. I'm just worried of telling her and she just completely rejecting it and being incredibly creeped out by it all Aaaaanyway cheers Lauren and please do reply as any advice would be huuuugely appreciated! And times are kind if drawing to a near and some advice would be fantastic as soon as possible. Thank you sooo much and I love yo...
  • dontknowwhattodo
     7/30/2014 7:29:27 AM
    Hi Lauren, I'm really glad I found this article today, it's given me some good points to look at. One problem though, I'm the one in a relationship. I've been with my girlfriend for nearly 5 years now, and for the first time I'm starting to feel unsure of things with us. At the same time, I've met another girl through a group of mutual friends and work. We've quickly become really close friends. We have a great deal in common, and also a lot of differences that we enjoy talking about, we spend a lot of time together and greatly enjoy each others company. It's gotten to the point where multiple people have asked how long we've been dating, a question we both laugh off (Often giving a response along the lines of "too goddamn long") She's said she loves me as her best friend and is really glad that we met, and I've reciprocated that sentiment. However, I know that I've developed deeper feelings for her, and those feelings, for multiple reasons, are clearly not mutual. I don't want to risk our friendship, but not bringing it up is torturing me. I know that I need to be honest with my girlfriend about what I'm feeling on that side of things, but I think that I can't bring anything up about the new girl to either of them until I figure things out. I'm scared and confused and I don't know how to handle the stress. I could really use some advice that doesn't come from the bottom of a bottle of gin. What should I do?...
  • Lauren Gray
     7/24/2014 1:34:33 PM
    Hi Menezesrick. If she needs time to think and she's asked you to give her space to think about it then you should honor her request. If you ever hope to have any relationship with her (friend or otherwise) than you need to honor her boundaries so that she knows she can trust you. There are a few different options for how you can proceed from this point and if you'd like to work one-on-one with me to find a game plan that works for you, I offer email advice packages.
  • menezesrick
     7/14/2014 5:15:37 PM
    Hi Lauren, I recently told my best friend I'm in love with her - even before I read your post ;). My case is still more difficult because she has a boyfriend for around seven years (I'm friend of them) and she's my coworker. So, I see her for about eight hours a day. She just said "I don't know what to think about it" and told me we would talk about it later but since then she's avoiding this talk and things are pretty awkward between us. I asked her to talk about it, but she said the same thing: "I'm not sure what to think about this". I'm really confused as I don't know if I insist to talk about it or if I just wait when she's ready. I really don't mind if she doesn't feel the same way. However, I'm too afraid to ruin our friendship because of this. What would you do? Do you have any advice, please?......
  • Lauren Gray
     1/20/2014 1:13:05 PM
    Thanks Nikokuni! So glad to hear it! Thanks for sharing your friendship experience. And to answer your question, this script would work the other way around as well. :-)
  • nikokuni
     1/19/2014 12:51:04 AM
    Hey Lauren! I really love all your blog posts and always look forward to your next update! I think that men and women can be friends as long as they both are on the same page about it. I have a friend whom I've known for a long time. Our friends used to always think that we were dating because we were thatclose. But, we were clear with each other from the beginning that it was more of a sibling thing than a sexy times thing. I'm also not one for pining and would rather let the person know, without any strings attached. I'm wondering though does this love script work the other way around; for girl to use on a guy?...

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