Woe Is Me! “I’m in Love With a Friend Who Doesn’t Love Me Back. How Do I Cope?”


Jul 3, 2022


Image credit: Anand (1971)

Woe Is Me! is a series in which The Swaddle team indulges your pity party with advice you’ll probably ignore.

“I’m gay and I’m in love with my straight male friend. We became very close and we consider each other best friends. After I came out he took it really well, and overall he’s really the type of guy I wanted to date but never met. I try to change my mind and tell myself to not think of him that way, but every time I meet him, I can’t help but get butterflies in my stomach. It wasn’t like this in the beginning, but the more I got to know him the more I fell in love.”

— Love me like I do

QG: The way I see it, you have two options: You may either preserve what sounds like a lovely friendship and work on getting over those feelings, or you may come clean and see how he reacts to this. If you choose to do the former, a friendship that sounds amazing stays steady and if you do the latter, the friendship might suffer a bit. However, your friend does seem like an understanding person– maybe you should try giving him the benefit of the doubt and see if he might help you get over these feelings? 

Either way, if your friend isn’t romantically interested in you, you have no option but to move on. You deserve a reciprocal, beautiful love. Not a love that’s one-sided and definitely not one that’s hidden. It might seem like the most difficult thing in the world but you very much can move on. Focus on that. Work towards that. You’ll get there, I promise you.

VS: If you consider your friend to be a safe space I would suggest you to be honest about your feelings. I know it takes a lot of hope, a lot of strength, to put your feelings out there for someone else to decide if they reciprocate or even understand it or not. This may or may not end up in your favor, but at least you give yourself that choice and that space to be true and vulnerable with someone you love. That in itself is truly wonderful! 

RN: This is a truly nerve-wracking situation to be in. Do you trust your friend enough to not have a straight panic if you tell him how you feel? And more importantly, are you sure he’s straight? It’s scary to think about what would happen if it doesn’t go the way you want it to — but also, what if it does? Call me a romantic but is arguably better to nurse your wounds knowing the answer than wasting away living in the “what ifs”. You’ll fall in love again if this doesn’t work out — I promise.

DD: This sounds like an extremely unfortunate situation. There are some times where what we know in theory doesn’t seem to translate with our emotions and this situation sounds like one of those where however much you convince yourself, those feelings towards your friend might still remain. In my opinion, it would make sense to come clean and be honest about your feelings especially since, in the past, they have responded in a way that you felt comfortable with. At the moment, it sounds like you and your friend are on different pages about what this friendship means to each of you which sounds like it could be an issue that could endanger your existing relationship. It might seem like a super tough conversation to have, but a necessary one I feel!


Written By The Swaddle Team


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