5 Friend Zone Signs - Can You Really Get Out of the Friend Zone? Friend Zone Definition and Meaning Am I In The Friend Zone? All The Signs That Will Help You Understand Your Status How To Avoid The Friend Zone In The First Place How To Get Out Of The Friend Zone How To Friend Zone Someone Escape The Friend Zone Is the friend zone a real thing? Yes. You may find that the person you’re interested in only sees you as a friend and is not interested in anything romantic. If you are looking for something more, this can be a very frustrating situation. But how do you know if you are in the friend zone, and can you get out of the friend zone? Read on as we discuss what the friend zone is, signs that you are stuck in the friend zone (which are sometimes the opposite of what you imagine), and potential approaches for getting out of the friend zone and taking things to the next level with your crush. Friend Zone Definition and Meaning On the most basic level, you are in the friend zone with someone if they only see you as a friend and don’t have any romantic or sexual feelings for you. They might even see you like a sibling. This usually occurs with someone you’ve known for a while, such as a childhood friend or someone in a shared friend group. While someone you have just met may not be romantically interested in you, the two of you don’t yet have that close bond of friendship. The friend zone is not always a bad place to be. If you also only consider that person to be a friend, both of you being in the friend zone can result in a comfortable and healthy platonic relationship. However, if you do have romantic feelings for someone, the friend zone can basically represent a big glass window between the two of you that you can’t get through. This can be incredibly challenging if you have deep feelings for another person. Am I In The Friend Zone? All The Signs That Will Help You Understand Your Status How to know if you are in the friend zone? While every person is unique, there are various friend zone signs that can indicate you are definitely stuck in the friend zone with someone. Often, when you play into these signs, you reinforce the idea to the other person and therefore contribute to getting friend-zoned. Below are five of the most common signs that you are in the friend zone. Signs You Are In The Friend Zone They Seem Extremely Comfortable Around You Of course, when you are dating someone, you want to be comfortable with them and know that even when they see you at your worst, they will still want to be with you. But, when we are in the “getting-to-know-you” or dating phase, we tend to want to show ourselves in the best possible light. We often make a bit more effort with our appearance, for example, and don’t share all of our most embarrassing stories. If you are at the point with a friend where they seem almost too comfortable around you, this is often a sign that, in their minds, you are “just a friend” and not a potential romantic connection. Therefore, they don’t retain the air of mystery they might otherwise have with someone they hope something more will happen with. They Tell You About People They Like Yes, making someone else jealous is an age-old dating custom. But usually, if you want to make someone jealous you tell them about someone who likes you or has been pursuing you. It is less common to talk about people that you like, as you want to seem desirable but available. If someone often talks about another person they have a crush on, then you are in the friend zone. They may even see you as the kind of close friend who can offer them useful dating advice. They Treat You As A Supportive Shoulder To Lean On Again, following along with the idea that you want to impress a person you’re romantically interested in and want to appear in the best possible light, you don’t tend to share your worst problems with a crush. Instead, you focus on your successes and what makes you look good. If someone wants to air their dirty laundry with you and discuss the details of their most difficult or embarrassing challenges, chances are they don’t see you as someone they want to form a romantic connection with. You have skipped straight past potential dating material to the friend zone. Of course, in the long run, you do want to be able to share all of your personal challenges with your significant other, just as you would with a best friend. But if you are interested in dating someone, you tend to play your cards closer to the vest and be a bit more guarded. They Never Do What You Want Usually, when you are interested in someone, you go out of your way to do what they want. You might agree to watch a movie you actually have no interest in, or go to a bar you don’t like just because you know they will be there. If you are in the friend zone with someone, they won’t be as willing to engage in your interests. They’ll probably suggest an alternative movie or agree to meet up with you somewhere else on another night. They Try To Set You Up With Other People When someone has a good friend who they don’t have romantic feelings for, they sometimes try to set them up with their other friends. This can be because they want to see you happy, or they recognize that you’re a great catch—but just not for them. They might also think it would be great if you could bring their friend along somewhere because then you could all hang out together. Signs You Are Not In The Friend Zone Of course, just because you are friends with someone doesn’t mean that romantic feelings can’t develop between the two of you. There are also signs to look out for that can indicate a friend might be interested in something more: If a friend finds everything you say amusing or interesting If a friend starts to genuinely compliment you more often If a friend starts touching you more often, innocently placing a hand on your arm, for example If a friend is more willing to go out of their way to spend time with you and do what you are interested in Any significant changes in your relationship with a friend can indicate that you are moving out of the friend zone. Strangely enough, growing discomfort or awkwardness between the two of you is often a sign that you are leaving the friend zone. How To Avoid The Friend Zone In The First Place The best way to avoid the friend zone is to never get stuck in it in the first place! This is not always as easy as it sounds, though. For example, you might think that listening to their problems or being a shoulder to cry on when they break up with someone else will give you a chance to get closer. But in reality, this can just reinforce the idea in their mind that you are just a friend and not a romantic partner. While it may seem counterintuitive while you are getting to know someone, you actually may want to try pulling back from these types of conversations. If you can catch being friend-zoned early on, you have a better chance of escaping it. But, even if you have known someone for years, there are steps you can take to get out of the friend zone. How To Get Out Of The Friend Zone Can you really get out of the friend zone? Yes. Friendships often blossom into romantic connections. But no two relationships are the same. And the truth is that sometimes, the harder you push, the more the other person will resist. But there are certainly things you can do to try to tip the balance in your favor. If you are stuck in the friend zone, the first thing you need to do is start establishing boundaries. You don’t want to fall into the trap of becoming too friendly and too comfortable. Start adding an air of mystery as you would with a new love interest. You also sometimes need to change the topic of conversation. If, for example, the conversation turns to someone they like, change the subject. If they start using you just as a sounding board for their problems, suggest going for a drink and talking about things they are likely to find amusing. If you are accustomed to sharing your own problems with them, you may want to pull back. Start gradually selling yourself as the catch you are and talk about your successes. They might think that this is a little strange at first and wonder why you’re “pulling away,” but this is not necessarily a bad thing. Introducing some change and discomfort can help them start to consider your relationship differently. Try to smile more, and try to make them smile more, too. Start introducing or changing your physical contact. If contact is new, start with a light touch on the arm when talking. If you are already quite physical, pull it back a little and save touching for more intimate moments. Finally, both dopamine (often referred to as the “feel good” neurotransmitter) and adrenaline have been shown to boost attraction, so try to add some to your relationship. Arrange to do new, exciting, or physically active things together. You never know, a trip to the rock climbing wall could make all the difference. How Do You Get Out Of The Friend Zone With A Girl While someone being “bad” can be appealing to some, women also tend to look for a partner they can trust implicitly. If the two of you are good friends, that may already be you. So it is all about adding a bit of sexual tension to the mix. Try to spend time one-on-one in places that are generally associated with romance. If you are at a bar full of couples, it may be easier for her to imagine herself with you. Make eye contact and try to stay close. Getting just inside her personal comfort zone can be a great way to raise the tension. Smiling and laughing is also a proven aphrodisiac for women, so try to get her laughing. But try for observational laughs. Don’t poke fun at yourself if you want her to start seeing you as potential partner material. How To Get Out Of The Friend Zone With A Guy What do you do when a man puts you in the friend zone? If you’re friends, he probably already likes your personality, so what’s missing is the sexual attraction. Consider what you can do to add some. Men often like to be the hero and swoop in and save someone. But they also tend to be attracted to someone exactly at the moment they seem most put together and as though they don’t really need him. This means that investing in yourself can make a big difference. Start trying new things, meeting new people, and pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone— and make sure he knows about it. He may just start to see you as the smart, independent, and fearless person he’s looking for. You can get more advice on how to make the first move on a guy friend here. How To Get Out Of The Friend Zone Through Text What if you and your crush have a more long-distance relationship and you mainly communicate through calls and texts? How do you avoid the friend zone through texting? The first key is to keep yourself at the forefront of their mind and keep the conversation open. Think of reasons for texting, like reaching out to them when you’re looking for recommendations. But don’t make the message “just business;” always include humor or something personal. Make sure all of your texts are open-ended, asking a question or giving them the opportunity to share their opinion. Short texts such as yes, no, and OK immediately shut down the discussion. While you want to be in contact regularly, don’t send them endless unanswered messages. Wait for them to respond. And you in turn don’t always have to respond right away. Remember that you are busy enjoying your life, too. Maintain the rule of not oversharing and instead always present yourself in the best possible light. If they start talking to you about other crushes or inappropriate challenges, change the subject. Try to make them laugh without being too silly or self-deprecating, and insert flirty language without getting explicit. Compliments can be a sure signal of your intention to take things beyond friendship. Getting Out Of The Friend Zone After Rejection Sometimes you realize you’re in the friend zone only when you go out on a limb and tell someone that you are interested. If they respond that they only see you as a friend, you have been squarely friend-zoned. While, of course, you need to respect their decision, there are still things you can do at this point to escape the friend zone. In fact, since the cat is already out of the bag in terms of your feelings, it may even be easier. While you don’t want to look like you are pulling away because you’re hurt, it’s a good idea to give your crush some space at this time. This gives them an opportunity to think about what happened and decide if they really aren’t interested in anything beyond friendship, and you can show how desirable you are by being in demand elsewhere -- and also that you respect their response. But you don’t want to start seeing somebody else immediately if it’s just to get over the person you’ve been friend zoned by. These kinds of jealousy tactics rarely work and make it seem like you aren’t serious; plus, it’s not fair to the person you begin seeing. Instead, maintain contact by having good reasons to see each other, rather than one of you eventually having to awkwardly reach out. Ask them for favors or to get a ride if you are both going to the same place. Put clear boundaries in place. Limit what you share about yourself, to create an air of mystery and show yourself in the best possible light. Also, if there were parts of your life that you were sharing because you saw the relationship going further, pull back on those. This protects you and can help them see that your relationship may have been more intimate than they previously realized. Finally, focus on moving on. While you may hope they start to return your feelings, you can’t really wait for this to happen. Move on by investing in yourself. Learn something new, meet new people, and maybe do some things that have always scared you. This can make you more attractive to your crush, or help you to move on. How To Friend Zone Someone But what about the flip side of the coin? What if you know that a friend has feelings for you, but you want to make it clear that, as far as you are concerned, you are just friends. While some people are better at picking up on hints than others, there are things you can do to firmly put someone in the friend zone (beyond outright telling them): Avoid meeting up one-on-one. Always suggest that a mutual friend would love to join, or conveniently run into someone just before meeting up. Remind them that you see them as a sibling or cousin. You can say this specifically, but also refer to youthful experiences that belong to that kind of relationship. Limit physical touch, as this can give your friend the wrong idea and feed their hope that something more could happen. Check yourself for flirting. It’s easy to fall into flirty habits, even with friends, so watch your body language and be aware of any banter with them. Don’t act like a partner. Maybe the two of you are accustomed to going grocery shopping or to the best new release movies together. Break these habits that blur the lines in your relationship. This will also leave them available to consider pursuing these activities with other potential romantic interests, diverting their focus from you. Tell them about other people you are interested in, but in a way that is clearly not intended to make them feel jealous. For example, you could mention that someone said or did something strange, but note that you didn’t mind because you really like them. If they try to bring up their feelings and you aren’t willing to have a frank conversation, change the subject. If you do this often enough, it will show that the subject is off the table. Escape The Friend Zone Not everyone you are attracted to will return your feelings. You will have people in your life who care about you deeply but don’t see you as anything more than a friend. At some point, you do need to accept the way the other person feels and start looking elsewhere for the romantic connection that you desire. But people will friend zone you for a variety of reasons. While some genuinely have no romantic interest in you, others may simply not have considered the possibility before now. Others won’t want to risk the friendship or will worry about what it could do to the dynamics of a friendship group. In these cases, there are things you can do to break down the friend zone barrier so that the two of you can explore the possibility that you can be more. One of the most important things to do is to put up barriers. The courting process involves elements of mystery and the excitement of getting to know another person. These processes can create the intimacy required for romance. If you already know someone well, it is not always easy to imagine this kind of connection. Putting up some boundaries in terms of what you share and talk about can help make space for that romance of a new encounter. If you feel like you’re too deep in the friend zone, a new relationship might be the answer. In that case, go ahead and download the OkCupid app today!