For Anyone Who Has Been In That Awful “Friend Zone”

This past week I had a blast from the past experience.  Me and my friend from Tulsa were looking around a store at Universal when we realized the guard at the front kept eying us.  He went out of his way to talk to us both times we went into the store (we had to go back for something), and my friend was convinced he was into me.  I was on the fence about it after our first store visit, but then during our second visit, I was convinced he’d rather chat up my friend.  She’s married and could probably care less about the situation (besides being a great wingwoman, of course), but at some point during this second stop, I felt really sad and just wanted to go.

In middle school, high school, and even grad school, I can pinpoint a time where I was friends with a pretty girl and wasn’t even in the running (whether I was interested or not) when it came to guys.  I’ve been told (after a significant effort on my part to show *my* interest) how interested a guy is in my friend.  I’ve been told by guys I’m in the middle of dating that they like my friend a little bit, too (yes this happened).  I’ve been asked why my beautiful friend shows indifference to a guy’s efforts when I could ask them the same question regarding my own.  I didn’t realize how much this affected me until this week when I felt all that hurt from 13, 15, and 21 year old me hit me all at once in a Universal store of all places.

Now don’t get me wrong.  I think I am a pretty, smart, strong woman and all.  I know I can improve in certain areas, but I don’t wake up hating myself or anything.  I am happy to put together a cute outfit or get my hair looking just right for a night out like any other girl.  But the past can kick me in the ass just like anyone else, too.

So guys of all ages, please don’t overlook the friend of the pretty girl you are dying to be with.  They are probably the one that has listened to you, offered advice, shared your interests, checked you out, etc. and you are completely missing their signals.  They may not be your one true love, but at least give it a second thought instead of trampling over their self-esteem and feelings without even realizing it.

And to pretty girl best friends- telling your friends sorry that yet another guy has fallen for you only makes the friend feel worse.  Trust me.  You could help by being straightforward about not being into guys you don’t care about so they don’t annoy you or stomp over your friend’s feelings.  You could even be a little bitchy in front of unwanted guys to throw them off the scent.  I promise, it’s okay if a few guys see that you aren’t perfect.  There will soon be another line of guys for you around the corner.

And to my fellow sisterhood of “friend zone” girls (and guys!), I’ve been there.  It sucks, and I wish I could give you all (and the incoming class of us) a hug.  It’s time to let these semi-scarring past experiences go, and not let them get to us in the middle of cartoon character stores over an only okay-looking guy when your married best friend is just there trying to get souvenirs for family members (run on sentence alert).  One day the guy will be looking at us, and we don’t want to miss it because we are excusing it as a “he’s just not that into you” moment ; )

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4 Comments to “For Anyone Who Has Been In That Awful “Friend Zone””

  1. Oh, sister. I feel your pain, many times over. I had the “pretty girl” best friend who refused to spurn any interest from any guy…IN CASE HE WAS THE ONE. Thank goodness my now-husband wasn’t her type. The good news? All the guys I was interested in who were interested in her…turned out to not be my type, anyway. 🙂 I was 28 when Carlos and I moved in together, and 34 when we got married. Sometimes you have to wait a bit and wait for the crowd to thin so you can find each other. 😉

    • I’ve just always been the type to be honest about the good and the bad. I could never pull off the fun, nice, and flirty bit 100% of the time like some of my friends. Sometimes I just need to vent, people! But right now you are my hero and hope that romance awaits later on since my family and apparently a lot of my Facebook friends (soooo many weddings and engagements right now) have found their one true love by age 20. I think my daily mantra is “good things come to those who wait.” Haha : )

  2. Dude, no one can simply choose who they fall for, and pretty girls are people too. They also listen, are supportive, and get friendzoned by guys who want someone else instead. And while honesty is the best policy with someone you aren’t attracted to, no one should ever have to compromise his or her character or “act bitchy” just to make a friend feel better about herself. What’s worse is that other people, including people who say they care about those pretty girls, will hold that same prettiness against them, as if it’s something that they chose and then decided to wield in order to spite others. Friends should want each other to be the most amazing, vibrant, perfect version of themselves that they can be, and they should never begrudge one another because of a third party’s admiration. True friendship is about complete acceptance and unconditional positive regard.

    • I’m sorry I didn’t clarify on the bitchy thing- I mean this in cases when my friends would talk a lot of crap behind the guy’s back about how they were totally not interested but then completely turned on the nice and flirty when the guy was around (re: Mean Girls’ line: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9i_vuICcLk4). If the person is just genuinely nice all the time, than they shouldn’t just turn on the bitchy. I would just usually see this side and then see a complete turn around in most cases which was frustrating. A simple not interested line and accompanying actions is fine, but in my experience usually does not happen.

      And I’m not damning all pretty girls because of their looks. I’m just trying to convey that being in someone’s shadow gets tiring, and if you end up feeling that crappy, it’s usually because you aren’t being treated very well by your friend either. Most people have been friend zoned at some point, and can agree it sucks. But as I said, when you find the guy (and the friends like you pointed out!) that make you feel like your best, than you’re in a good place. It can just take some time to get there ; ) I am lucky to have some great friends now, including my friend from Tulsa, but I had to go through several crappy one-sided friendships to get there. Maybe the lesson is to find better friends than find the perfect guy, eh?

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