Friendzoning can be a positive thing if you do it right. People might see it as a rude gesture, but it begins with the foundations of respect and kindness.
The friendzone is a situation where there is a friendship, but one person has unreciprocated romantic feelings.
When someone has romantic or sexual feelings about you and you can’t reciprocate the same energy, it can be awkward. Being the reason for someone’s heartbreak isn’t ideal and the feeling of being humiliated isn’t best, but who wants to lie?
Should you friendzone someone? You don’t have to be friends with everyone you reject. Just imagine someone who you’re friends with has a romantic interest in you, pines over you, and becomes jealous over other people you date.
Boundaries get crossed and it can be a challenge. Friendzones are a tricky place because they might create a sense of false hope, especially if you want them in your life, but in a platonic capacity.
BLK, a dating app for Black singles, revealed a comprehensive list of tips to help individuals navigate the friendzone while maintaining valuable friendships.
Here are the 10 tips to effectively friendzone:
1. Keep it real
When it comes to friendzoning someone, it’s crucial to be true to yourself and express your genuine intentions. Let them know that you value their friendship deeply and appreciate their presence in your life as a cherished friend and confidant.
2. Set clear boundaries
Communication is key in any relationship, and this applies to friendships too. Lay down the law and have an open and honest conversation about the boundaries that need to be established to ensure a healthy and respectful friendship. Clearly communicate what is acceptable and what isn’t, helping both of you navigate the transition with clarity and understanding.
3. Show some empathy
Understanding their perspective is vital during this sensitive time. Put yourself in their shoes and acknowledge their emotions and potential disappointment. Let them know that you genuinely empathize with their feelings while emphasizing your commitment to maintaining a strong and supportive friendship.
3. Maintain open communication
Keep the lines of communication open to provide a safe space for them to express their thoughts and concerns. Regularly check in with them, ask how they’re doing, and be attentive to their emotional well-being. This consistent communication will help reinforce the foundation of your friendship and ensure that both of you feel heard and understood.
4. Give them space
Give them some breathing room. Recognize that they may need time and space to process their emotions and adjust to the new dynamic. Give them the breathing room they need without completely cutting off contact. This will allow them to come to terms with the shift and gradually embrace the friendship without lingering romantic expectations.
5. Be their wingman/wingwoman
Be a supportive friend by encouraging them to explore new romantic opportunities and meet new people. Offer advice, help them with dating apps, or set them up on a casual outing. Show them that you genuinely want them to find happiness, even if it’s not with you romantically.
6. Bond over shared interests
Strengthen the friendship by engaging in activities and conversations that you both dig. Focus on the things that brought you together initially and continue to cultivate those shared passions. By emphasizing the non-romantic aspects of your connection, you can build a deeper bond rooted in friendship.
7. Celebrate friendship milestones
Acknowledge and celebrate important moments in your friendship journey, such as birthdays, anniversaries, or achievements. By commemorating these milestones, you show them that their presence in your life matters beyond any romantic potential, solidifying the foundation of your friendship.
8. Be mindful of their emotions
Consider their feelings throughout this process. Avoid leading them on or giving false hope, as it can hinder their ability to move forward. Choose your words and actions carefully, striking a balance between honesty and sensitivity to ensure their emotional well-being remains a priority.
9. Remember why you’re friends
Remind them of the unique qualities they bring to your life and the positive impact they have had. Share heartfelt stories of shared experiences, inside jokes, and the profound connection you’ve built. By highlighting the depth and significance of your friendship, you reaffirm your commitment to maintaining a strong and meaningful bond.