Learning and Exploring

The Friend-zone

I’ve seen a lot of complaining about this. I think some guys try to call straight up disinterest with being friend-zoned and then girls pretend that this is the only thing that happens.

When someone is clearly NOT interested in you, avoids you, has explicitly said they are not interested in you, you are rejected, not friend-zoned, sorry. Face it and move on.

However, if person you are interested in you is using you as a pseudo-boyfriend/girlfriend or just in case significant other (aka, what Ann does with Justin in Parks and Rec), jealous when you date or are interested in someone else, selectively burns hot and cold as far as flirting goes, keeps other interested parties away from you, etc. also, not friend-zoned, that person has a narcissism and dehumanizing problem, and you need to run.

I’d say friend-zoning to be where the couple manage to keep on the outside overall a respectful platonic friendship but where one person wants more from it and eventually probably won’t be able to manage the friendship part. The other party may not be truly interested because of personality, time of life, or unrealistic expectations or all of the above.

I’d imagine there is a lot of variety, some blends or shading of all of the above. Let me give you my excruciating example. I was “little sister-zoned” by a guy who WAS flirting, but not seriously, just because I gave an obvious giggly response on cue always. It was a long time ago, he wasn’t a jerk, he wasn’t really leading me on or using me, I knew perfectly well he wouldn’t date me, my responses just gave him a little vanity boost. I just get second-hand from the past embarrassment thinking about my side of it.


  • Marian

    Wow… I think I’ve experienced every single thing you’ve described!

    I think modern dating / casual flirting makes things more ambiguous and complicated. I am starting to prefer when guys come out immediately with whether they are interested in me romantically or not. Likewise, I try to be more upfront with guys whom I’m not interested in, earlier on, and let them know I’m just looking to be friends (take it or leave it XD).

    These things will still happen, though, cause sometimes you don’t know if you’re interested in someone until you get to know them a bit better. In that case, we should try to be more forgiving and empathetic of each other.

    The real problem I have noticed is when people instantly take common decency for romantic interest. I’m not going to ghost someone or tell them off just cause I’m not interested in them – I’m still going to try to be polite. I know ghosting people is standard now, but I refuse to live like that (unless I genuinely believe they will cuss me out or something, which has actually happened to me online).

    Sorry for the long comment, this is something I’ve probably thought too much about. XD

    • Rachel Olivia

      I’m a long comment person myself.

      I just see it around so much, because I do think it is a real thing, but then a lot of women say no, its just guys being manipulative, and I’m like, hmm, that’s not the same thing, both can be true. I feel like it’s a big movie trope, I think it real life it’s more likely to be somebody using somebody else at least from what I’ve seen.

      A guy cussed you out online, wow! I’m not trying to date at the moment, I don’t have my full adulthood credentials at the moment and wouldn’t want to date a guy in the comparable circumstances to me (I think this is part of the modern dating issue, people who don’t have their lives even the least bit together trying to find someone), but I’m still trying to think through my options, and whenever I hear about dating apps or online dating which seems to be the norm, I just, how on earth does would I weed out the crazies?! And how would I, an un-stunning person, survive on what seems to be a beauty pageant type situation?

      I feel like I have more of the flirt-zone issue or boy crazy issue, because I just act so silly. I couldn’t ever complain of someone taking something to be interest because it would be, just not exactly in the way they mean, not seriously, which is it’s own issue. I also feel like (probably tied to this) I need to have bail out personality which would make ghosting right up my alley, probably should watch out for that.

      • Marian

        Yeah…. I know some people have great success with dating sites, so I wouldn’t rule it out completely. But in my (very brief) experience, it just feels icky, like you’re putting yourself out for display, even if you don’t have that intention. And some people on those sites behave terribly. >_>

        I think sites like Meetup.com where you can join groups centered around a hobby or interest is a more organic, and safer, way of meeting people. Video is also expected, so you don’t run into weirdos as much (or if you do, it’s more obvious).

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