Most of us have known and have been through this infamous gray area known as the friend zone. We tend to see this as a negative thing due to the fact that we feel like we didn’t get what we want: a solid romantic relationship with the person we have feelings for.
It definitely is not the best feeling in the world to hear your special someone say “Let’s just stay friends,” but what if we look at it through a different lens? What if instead of seeing it as an opportunity gone to waste, we see it as a bigger opportunity to get to know the person we want to spend our entire lives with?
To prove my point we will begin with the most obvious question: why do we abhor being in the friend zone? The answer is quite simple: when we confess our feelings to someone, we tend to expect that they would feel the same way about us. Whether you deny it or not, the feeling of bitterness will always lurk around the shadows of our psyche when we don’t get what we want.
Think back to your childhood days and you wanted a certain toy so much that you had to scream and hit things with your tiny arms flailing around the milk section of the grocery store demanding your mother to get the toy but she still says “no.” Wouldn’t you expect her say “yes”? This is how we sometimes feel, we expect this special someone to like us back when in reality there is probably a bigger chance she would say “no” when we wanted a solid “yes” just like in our favorite Filipino rom-coms.
This leads me to my next point, why it is better to be in the friend zone? Think about this, if you like someone, do you see them as the most perfect human being to ever live? Also examine how you treat them compared to your friends.
When you see your crush as someone extraordinarily special, thinking that she only deserves the best of your attention, then you’re already setting the bar too high. Sometimes we drool over the fact that our crushes are perfect beings without remembering that they are people just like us. People have flaws and once you see that your expectation of perfection start to fade because of one or a few flaws, you start to lose interest.
We sometimes put our crushes in such a high pedestal that once you see their flaws, that pedestal is going to start crumbling down and in turn –crush- them under a pile of rubble now known as disappointment.
This also leads me to my question of relationships with friends. Personally, it is a big problem when you realize that you are treating your friends differently from your crush when in reality, they are the exact same people. There should be no difference when it comes to the way you treat them because what you expect your crush to do when you are in a relationship is already found in your circle of friends, loving you regardless of your situations.
Your friends have been, are still, and will always be by your side whether you do something wrong or have a few ideas that contradict one another, because friendship does not depend on looks, ethnicity, sexuality, religion, etc. It depends more on how you treat each other, with respect and acceptance, and if you think about, isn’t that the ideal relationship we all want?
What you expect from your crush is what you already have with your circle of friends, the only difference would be the physical aspect of romance. And this is why I think the friend zone should not always be seen in a negative light.
When someone you like says “I think we should stay friends,” you should start seeing it as another opportunity to get to know them. This time, expecting a lot less. We should start treating them the way we treat our other friends with love and respect. If you don’t think you can handle that then you are going to have to start thinking about your reasons for liking them and asking them out. Is it to have mutual respect for one another or is it just for you to feel good, and only for you alone?
Having a solid friendship with your crush can help you realize how important it is to find out who she/he is as a person. When you start dating out of the blue with only a thimble of knowledge about how they are as a person and how they treat others you will end up seeing that this relationship is not going to work out, and the more you keep doing this to other people all you are going to feel is pain and disappointment.
The friend zone is not the worst place to be in. If anything, it is the best if we open our minds to the idea, because the friend zone doesn’t ruin your chances with the person, rather it gives a bigger chance of having a solid, unbreakable relationship with this person filled with the most important feature the I believe love should have: trust.