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  • Paula Thompson
    Paula Thompson

    Friend Love in the Digital Age

    As times have changed, so have the ways in which we find and pursue potential love interests. In the days of old, meeting people from other social circles was an extremely rare occurrence and thus it was practically unheard of to fall for a friend. But in today's world, skyrocketing technology trends and vast networks of people spending time together in virtual and real life realms alike, it is becoming increasingly common to look towards friends for romantic and/or sexual attention. Considering this, it can be hard to know what the right course of action is and how to handle such a delicate topic – so in reference to this situation, here are a few tips on what to do if you’ve found yourself in a state of friend love.

    The first yet most important step is to come to terms with the emotions stirring up within. It may feel natural to suppress these initially as they are complex and oftentimes uncomfortable, but one must remember that it is impossible to effectively deal with them until they have been fully acknowledged. Acknowledge these emotions, allow yourself to experience them deeply and truly, and then utilize them as a source of information. They hold the key codes to understanding exactly where you stand in this situation - and believe it or not, this knowledge can be a powerful tool when expressed in a mindful and clear way.

    Once you have completed the above mentioned phase, it is of some importance to curb any sort of jealousy that may be lingering in the air. It’s highly likely that your friend has feelings for someone else too - and since jealousies can easily become entangled in the emotion of infatuation, it's best to nip any monster green eyed tendencies in the bud. If this proves to be challenging, it might be helpful to insert your friend into different contexts such as reviews of their professional works, chatty catch up’s with mutual friends regarding their comedic overtones, etc. Oftentimes our irrational mindsets get the best of us and we are unable to adjust our mindset, this is why inserting them into different contexts can make a tremendous difference.

    The next but equally pivotal step is to bring the matter up to your pal. Of course everyone’s relationship is unique and the extent to which you choose to delve into the conversation is solely down to you, but the best way to handle it when bringing it up with your friend is in an affirming and honest manner. Make sure they feel comfortable with the conversation and that there is a shared understanding that both of you want what’s best for yourself as well as each other. And as always, be respectful with whatever response is given and take the time to process it - be it positive or negative.

    Once all of the above has been taken into consideration, it may prove beneficial to engage in some self-analysis. Capturing how you feel throughout this endeavour will allow you to create an emotional road map so to speak. Are there moments where you feel weak? Moments where you feel proud? Moments where you feel discouraged? Spend time with yourself and work on coming to terms with your own sense of identity and this will likely prove to be of great assistance too.

    Falling for a friend is a well traveled road, yet also a tricky situation to navigate. Many unknown elements standing between you and clarity, making it all the more difficult to work out. But slow and steady and with the help of these tips, surely will bring to shore a little more light on the situation at hand. Put your focus on understanding the feelings buried behind each emotion and utilizing them as signals rather than trying to battle against them - then go forth and decide just what is best for you.

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