In popular culture, friend zone refers to a platonic relationship wherein one person wishes to enter into a romantic or sexual relationship, while the other does not. It is generally considered to be an undesirable or dreaded situation by the lovelorn person.

Wikipedia defines the “friend zone,” which is (and has been) a prevalent topic in popular culture. In Game of Thrones, there is Catelyn Stark and Littlefinger (Petyr Baelish) and the Khaleesi and her advisor Jorah. MTV is on Season Five of the series “Friendzone,” where people that have feelings for their best friend reveal it to them. Regardless, it is a tough subject with real people that can be emotionally effected on either side. We hope this guide can help you navigate your understanding, whether you have feelings or you don’t.

How to Navigate the Friend Zone

If you think you’re in love, think seriously before you take it a step further. Sure, many great relationships have started as a friendship, but many great friendships have also been ruined because of ill-advised attempts at romance. Remember how great it was for Dawson and Joey to realize that they were in love? Oh wait…right. If you want to make the next step, you better be damn sure that you’re ready to risk the friendship for something more.

1. Are you sure you feel love and not friendship? Learn how to Differentiate Between Love and Friendship.

Most guys and girls who find themselves in the “friend zone” are usually susceptible to many of the characteristics of the “nice guy” or “sweet girl” stereotype. This means pretty much someone who wants to avoid making other people uncomfortable at any cost, but does so usually at their own expense by not communicating their own needs. 

2. Escape the Friend Zone.

You’ve been good friends with a person for a long time now, but recently you’ve noticed that he or she is acting differently around you. You’re starting to suspect that there’s only one logical explanation: your friend is crushing on you. Whether you’re excited because you want to take things to the next level with your friend, or worried because you don’t return those romantic feelings, there are a few ways to tell whether or not your good friend has a crush on you. If you want to know how your close friend really feels about you, follow these steps.

3. Find Out if a Good Friend is Crushing On You.

Try to determine if your friend is interested in a relationship in general, it might not be the right time to act.

4. How to Tell Your Best Friend You “Like Like” Them.

Unrequited love is love that is not returned. Whether you are the one who loves or is loved, it can be a painful experience. This article will offer some guidance for dealing with unrequited love, which has haunted and inspired people throughout history.

5. Deal with Unrequited Love, whether you love or are loved.

Define your relationship as a friendship from the start. In any relationship, cross-gender friendships included, communication is key. Presumptions can lead to broken friendships, misunderstandings, and other problems down the line. Egos aside, address why you both want to be just friends. There’s a period in most opposite sex friendships when you question whether or not you should be more. Address it early on. Both of you must want a strictly platonic friendship and understand that’s all it will ever be. No matter what anyone says, it is possible to be just friends as long as you have that understanding (and a commitment to the friendship as just that) from the start.

6. How to Be Just Friends with a Member of the Opposite Sex.

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