We didn’t come here to make friends, people – we want more! If you’ve ever wondered if your Crush was starting to see you as a mate rather than a date, match.com’s resident dating expert, Kate Taylor is here to interpret the signs.
FRIEND ZONE SIGN 1: You’re invited to “come along” to things
Beware the “come along” invite – it’s too passive. People who want to go out with you don’t offer wishy-washy invitations to events they’re already attending, they make definite plans with you. The exception here is if you haven’t had a proper date together yet. Some shy people will invite you to “come along” as a low-key way of asking you out. In that case, come along once, but the next time you go out should be a real date.
Fix It: If you do accept a “Come Along” invitation, don’t treat it like a date. Bring some of your friends along, be a social butterfly, leave early. This will encourage your Crush to ask you out somewhere they can get you alone.
FRIEND ZONE SIGN 2: You get mostly last-minute invitations
When people are into you, they ask you out in advance. They see you as sought-after, and are terrified that you’ll be busy if they don’t book you up. They also enjoy the build-up to the date. In contrast, people who see you as a Friend tend to invite you to things the same day. “Wanna have a drink l8r?” Ugh.
Fix It: Warmly decline any last-minute invitations. Ideally, keep yourself busy so you’re genuinely never free the same day. If you’re not going out, make plans at home – read a great book, exercise, catch up with Mad Men. Just don’t be Mr or Ms Available.
FRIEND ZONE SIGN 3: They set you up on dates
“You should meet my friend/colleague/brother, I think you’d really get on. They’re single.” Could there be any more depressing words to come out of a crush’s mouth?
Fix it: Treat it like a chance to meet someone new. Say, “Yes, we should all go out together one evening,” then make sure you look *gorgeous* and go and flirt with both of them. Having some on-the-spot competition will ignite any embers of desire your Crush has for you.
FRIEND ZONE SIGN 4: They ask you for dating advice
Platonic friends swap insider advice on love all the time, from what clothes to wear on dates, through to what presents to buy, right up to how to win back an ex. But you don’t want to be platonic friends – you want to be the one getting the dates and presents. Right? Right. So…
Fix it: Don’t give dating advice! It’s signing your name indelibly in the “Friends” column of their life. You’ll end up revealing too much about your own dating hang-ups and habits, and they’ll never see you in the same way again. Just offer compliments. “Anyone who doesn’t realise how amazing you are should have their head examined”… ought to do it.
FRIEND ZONE SIGN 5: They don’t celebrate special occasions with you
People who have mushy feelings about you will want to spend the most romantic days of the year in your company – Christmas Eve, New Year’s Eve, birthdays, Valentine’s Day. When they get a new job, they ask you to celebrate. When they get a bonus, they spend it with you. They send you postcards from holiday, or ask you out on November 5th to watch fireworks. You make the special times even more special. So if they let all these occasions pass you by, stop and think.
Fix it: Don’t rationalise to yourself why your Crush isn’t spending the romantic days with you – notice it! Then make a concerted effort to make these days special without them. Not only will this increase your chances of meeting someone else who will feel romantic with you, but you’ll be happier and more fulfilled when you DO see your Crush. And that’s about the sexiest thing there is.
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