Is it ever a good idea to try to just make friends with someone you've got a crush on?

I’ve got a crush on someone I’ve only just met, and I don’t intend to act on it for various reasons (she’s out of my league, probably straight, 19 [I’m 26 and female], various other things that are too identifiable - trust me, it’s a bad idea).

The thing is, I think she’s awesome, and I’d love to be friends with her.

How difficult is it to be just friends with someone you’ve got a crush on? Difficult enough that it isn’t worth it?

And if you were friends with someone (who you didn’t know was even attracted to your gender) who gave no indication of secretly having a crush on you and you found out they had since before you were even friends and (this is crucial) they were the ones who pursued a friendship with you, would that creep you out, make you uncomfortable or make you feel deceived or tricked or something?

(I’m assuming for the purposes of this question that I will be found out eventually, because it’s generally a mistake to assume you can successfully forever keep something hidden from someone you interact with a lot.)


Why not?

Would you still have a crush on her or try to act on your crush if it turns out she is straight?

It’s been my experience that my motivations for relationships have to be pure, or it doesn’t work. Do you really want to go into a friendship knowing that it can never be a really honest one? woudl you be happy to find out that one fo your male friends had been cruching on you the whole time you’d known him?

In my experience, sometimes it works out. As you get to know a person better you realize you could have never worked as a couple but you’re glad you’re still friends.

But, that’s only in some situations. Also in my experience, you just end up being sad that you can’t be together and then angry when they start to date someone else.

If she is straight and you can accept the fact that her being straight makes her the worst match possible for you, then go forth and be friends. But if you are always going to be pining for her regardless of her orientation, move along.

I find that, sometimes when I have a crush, through the process of building a friendship with that person (and keeping my crush secret), I often learn something about the person that makes me sick. Presto! The crush is cured and you can continue on your merry way, just being friends.

I once had a crush on one of my subordinates at work. I never told a soul because I didn’t want to put either one of us in a potentially unemployed situation. After trying to ignore this crush for about four months, one day he said something out of the blue that struck me as really insecure and controlling. I was completely revolted and the crush was cured.

Another Doper posited to me once that the minute you tell someone you have a crush on them, that cures your crush.

I don’t think it’s all that terribly painful to be friends with someone I’m crushing on. I try to remind myself “This person isn’t into you; your little fantasy is never going to become reality. Just calm the fuck down and be a good friend.” I think you just have to keep your head on straight about it and keep the fantasies in Fantasyland and try to operate in the realm of Reality when you are in that person’s presence.

Situation reversed (someone else is crushing on me and befriends me), I wouldn’t be squicked out if they never told me of their attraction. For all I know, I’ve hung out with many friends who were crushing on me and I was free of clue. I have been a bit uncomfortable if the person did tell me because then I started Monday-morning Quarterbacking every interaction I ever had with the person to see if I could see the clues in retrospect. If it was someone I wasn’t attracted to, I find myself distancing myself from that person.

Before you make any friendly overtures, just ask yourself if you are treating the person the same way you’d treat a friend whom you do not want to fuck. If it’s appropriate for a casual friendship, then it’s appropriate, crush notwithstanding.

Keep your crush to yourself until you know this person a little better.

One of my best friends is someone I once had a crush on. AFAIK, he never figured it out–I never acted on it because he was dating someone else when I met him, continued dating her, and eventually married her. She is also now one of my best friends.

Another one of my best friends is someone who used to be attracted to me–and possibly still is.

It hasn’t always been easy–especially when I was giving relationship advice to the friend I had a crush on–but I would hate very much to lose either of these men as friends.

This is also a very important observation. It’s entirely possible that through further association with the person, you’ll learn things about them that make you say, “Wow, I’m really glad we’re not in a relationship.” Not bad things, necessarily–just incompatible ones.

I’ve done it a few times, partly because I prefer to know a person before making my interest known and partly because I want to know them regardless of any outcome.

The only word of caution: if the crush doesn’t get cured, it will hurt to hear them talk about their dates or significant others. It hurts a good deal, especially if you don’t already have someone of your own. It’s up to you if the friendship is worth that pain.

Depends on the intensity of the crush. I have had little crushes on tons of people I know, male and female. Getting to know them better, faults and all, usually quells the flames. If I were obsessed, though, and the feeling wasn’t mutual, I doubt I could hang out with them without blubbering and blushing.

ETA These crushes were all based on charm and smarts and all that good stuff. Never did I feign interest in a hottie or anything like that. Pretending to be interested in someone or to think they’re funny when you’re just waiting for them to get drunk enough to feel up is not cool. It’s supremely disappointing. It would actually work better if they knew you had a little, casual crush on them (which they may, indeed, if others have noticed).

Thank you very much, everyone.

I think what I’ll do is hang back (our paths will continue to cross periodically for the foreseeable future) for a while until I know how intense and long-lived this crush is and if it lets up enough that I think I won’t get sad/jealous hearing about her dating other people then maybe I’ll strike up a friendship and if not, I’ll just keep our interactions friendly but superficial.

I know it’s probable that getting to know her better would reveal something that makes me glad I’m not in a relationship with her or that dispels the crush, but I can’t count on that happening so I figure this covers all the bases and protects both of us.

(I really just wish I didn’t have the damn crush on her because she really is awesome and I think she’d make a great friend. Oh well. Maybe it’ll turn out to be small and fleeting and I’ll get to be friends with her after all.)

Another question: if she strikes up a friendship with me, should I tell her up front (assuming I still have a crush on her at that point) or just if it gets to be too painful for me to continue to be her friend? I guess I should throw in the third option of continuing to distance myself from her and not becoming her friend, but that seems a little unnecessary.

1.) Just because it will hurt if she’s involved with someone else doesn’t mean that it wouldn’t be worth putting up with that for the friendship. It might not be, for you, but it also might be just the price you’re willing to pay for an otherwise great friendship.

2.) Telling or not telling… Do what makes you comfortable. The friend I had a thing for I never told, and I eventually got over it (albeit years later). A mutual good friend of ours who also had a thing for him *did *eventually tell him, they talked things through (he had no idea she felt that way), the awkwardness was moved past pretty quickly, and we’re still all good friends years later.

Thank you for your input, it’s very helpful.

The thing is, I’m extremely socially isolated and lonely and just beginning to break out of that, so this crush thing is particularly painful. I think I need to have more people (and, well, prospects) in my life and hopefully a sexual relationship with someone before I can be friends with her.

Ah, yeah, that would affect things then. Good call. And thumbs-up on being so self-aware.

I had a similar issue a few years ago - met an awesome, almost certainly straight girl and developed a crush but wanted to be friends anyway. I’m long over my crush on her (though she remains stunningly gorgeous) and I never told her about my crush, in some part due to the fact that I wasn’t out of the closet at the time. She remains an awesome friend. It worked out fine because I didn’t have any expectations from my crush, and I just channeled it into having fun being around her. If I were you I wouldn’t tell her about the crush, it might make her feel uncomfortable around you and if you aren’t expecting to start a romantic relationship with her anyway it’s not that necessary.

In my experience, I did discover something about this friend of mine that made me realize I wouldn’t want to be in a relationship with her anyway - specifically, that she is a very, very private person, and that would tick me off if we were dating and I knew there were a lot of things about her that I didn’t know and would never know. However, this doesn’t stop her from being a good friend. We just hung out recently for the first time in a while and had a great time, as if the time between when we had last seen each other and now had never even happened.

ETA: AAAAAAH! I am younger than you so take my advice with a grain of salt, or even an entire salt shaker, but you said that you think you should have a sexual relationship with someone before you begin this friendship. I can’t even tell you how much I discourage that line of thinking. Friendship is a great way to explore interpersonal relationships without having to get sex and love into the mix to complicate things.

I have a close friend who had a crush on me all throughout college. (He still casually dated other people during that time, but he’d persist in asking me out whenever he was single.) It made for an interesting friendship, but we’ve managed to stay friends until today, even after his crush disappeared.

On the other side, I once had a crush on someone that I had no chance of having a relationship with, and I thought we could be friends. It didn’t end well at all.

I guess my point is that it depends on the people involved.

I had a colossal crush on the most beautiful woman I’ve ever met. Unfortunately for me, it wasn’t reciprocated. She offered me her friendship and we’ve been friends for better than 30 years.

It looks to me like **supergoose **wasn’t saying she *needed *to be having sex with someone else before she could be friends with crush-woman (haha, it makes her sound like She-Hulk), just that it would make it easier. Certainly, seeking out sex as a means to make yourself more social isn’t going to work for everyone. But being in a solid relationship of your own–assuming the person isn’t just being used as a stand-in for the one you really want to be with–*can *make being friends with someone you’re attracted to a lot easier.

That’s it exactly, Shot From Guns. Thanks.

Always happy to tell people what someone else meant. :smiley:

Oh, sorry for my fail! :o