Note: Goody is a friend of mine (Ryan) from college and a frequent reader of Can I Get Ur Number. We discussed the need to respond to Sarah’s Friend Zone post and he wrote something up. I will add in my thoughts at a later date…enjoy!
In light of the recent posts on the Slow Play, I’d like to spend my first time discussing the blackhole of sexual attraction known as the friend zone. I won’t waste time discussing what exactly it is, since if you’re sexually active (or actively trying to be) you have experienced it firsthand and know how much it can suck and how impossible it seems to get out of it. Blame John Cusack. Sarah gives her take on it here but I thought it would be interesting to give a guy’s take on how you got there, and just how you can get yourself out it. I have done it once in my life and I will say that this was a profound exception and your attempts to get out of it will most likely crash and burn and destroy the friendship you do have, but hey, smoke ’em if you got ’em. Who am I to judge?
(but seriously, the best thing to do about the friend zone is move the hell on)
And as a side note ladies this advice is definitely applicable to you as well. Girls do get friend-zoned just as often, so pull up that pint of ice cream and read along.
How You Got There
Joey: It’s never gonna happen.
Joey: You and Rachel.
Ross: Wha… whatta… What? Why not?
Joey: Because you waited too long to make your move, and now you’re in the friend zone.
There are two primary reasons you are in the friend zone:
First, they’re just not into you. This could be for a million reasons or no reason at all. You have the same name as their ex. You’re nothing like their ex. They’re bloated. They find your opinion that Pinkerton is Weezer’s best album to be ridiculous. They find your propensity to wear comic book t-shirts childish rather than endearing in a cute nerd sort of way (personal anecdotes exit left). Whatever. It doesn’t matter.
Second, you waited too long, just as Joey said in the one and only one episode of Friends I have seen (appropriate, much?) from start to finish. For guys, this generally means you waited too long to make a move. For girls, it generally means that you waited too long to reciprocate interest. For both, the reasons WHY you hesitated are irrelevant (“Oh I didn’t want to ruin our friendship by potentially having things fall through?” is the worst excuse ever. Being close friends with someone and having secret feelings about them is more of a douche move than anything else). For both sexes, indecisiveness is a profound turn off and will quickly kill any attraction someone has for you.
In avoiding the friend zone in the future there’s little you can do about reason one. Be attractive. Don’t be unattractive. You can, however, control the second. Make the move. Make A move. Anything that says, yes, I’d like to potentially hold hands with you while we are naked in the pale moonlight will suffice in the beginning.
What To Do
Now that we understand why you’re there, and what you can do to get yourself out of it. Note that this is a massive undertaking that should not be taken lightly. As I mentioned, you will probably fail in your attempt. Your life is not a Taylor Swift song. Think long and hard on whether or not this person is really, really worth all the time and energy you’re about to exert to win their affection (chances are they aren’t). If you still think you’re going to go for it, may the Force be with you and read on.
My process goes as followed:
Being in the friend zone means that your suitor is not attracted to you AT THE CURRENT MOMENT. This means something about you right now has led them to not think of you as someone they would potentially bone and be in a relationship with. Again, reasons are irrelevant to us at this stage. What you have to do is separate yourself from this person. Ideally, cut all physical contact and limit communication (and for fuck’s sake, get off Facebook – I’ll explain why in a bit) with them. Depending on your relationship with them, this may be difficult but you should still try. This should be done for a minimum of a month – I did it for three and it worked well. The reasons WHY you are doing this are straightforward – by creating separation you are giving yourself a chance to ‘reset’ your relationship and how they view you..
By far the hardest part of this process, you must do your best to change or improve yourself in some way. Make yourself busy as possible in the time away. Pick up a new hobby that you genuinely enjoy. Learn to be attractive. Learn to not be unattractive. Find your Dagobah and your destiny (note: Star Wars reference). Limit your postings on social media – they will probably look you up while you’re away and if you’re still posting the same stupid cat videos as you were a month ago, it will undermine all your efforts. Hit the gym. Buy some new clothes. Make a conscious effort to be a better person than you were the day before. I’m not expecting you to change your life around in a month or two, but it is important that you are SHOWING progress and are slightly different than you were when you were initially stuffed into the friend zone.
2a. Sleep with other people:
So now you have separated, and made yourself slightly cooler than you were when you started out. Now, go bang other people. The more, the better. Hopefully this will mean you’re no longer pining after your friend after you realize that they aren’t the unicorn you’re making them out to be in your head. No? You still are? Never mind then. Carry on.
Now it’s time for the big reveal. Reinitiate contact on your terms. Be assertive and do your best to avoid everything you did before you started this silly chase. If you did everything right during the time away they will immediately notice a difference. It doesn’t have to be extreme, but just as long as it’s enough for them to notice a degree of change. This will create a shred of curiosity that you can seize on, and hopefully conclude this pitiful chapter of your existence.