You have a male friend who you really value in your life. But lately…things feel…different. You’re wondering if he might have feelings for you.
If he does, you’re not sure how you should handle it. Would he be the perfect partner…or would it be a disaster?
These signs your guy friend is falling for you will help you determine whether that’s the case and will help you figure out what to do about it.
Signs Your Guy Friend is Falling for You to Watch Out For
Remember in the movie When Harry Met Sally when Harry said men and women can’t be friends? Is that true? When one person in a friendship starts to have romantic feelings for the other, it definitely changes things.
If your guy friend is falling for you and you feel the same, then great! You can explore being a couple.
But if he has feelings for you that you don’t return…you’ll need to tread lightly. You want to stay friends with him, I presume. But you risk hurting his feelings by telling him you don’t feel that way about him, and that can damage the relationship.
Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, let’s first look at those signs to see if it’s even an issue.
1. He’s Putting More Effort Into His Appearance
You’re so comfortable around one another that you frequently show up at his house in yoga pants. He usually wears his loungey Star Wars pants too when you hang. But lately, you’ve noticed him stepping up his game. He’s wearing—gasp!—ironed shirts and nice shoes! And what is that smell?! Cologne? You didn’t even know he owned any!
Dressing nicer is the equivalent of a male peacock strutting for all the peahens. He’s trying to show off for you, to show you that he can look hot if he makes an effort.
2. He Acts Differently
Only a few months ago, this man would have no issue burping around you. You took it as a testament to how truly comfortable you were with one another. But now he seems a little…stiff. Like he’s trying to be on his best behavior and you can’t figure out why. This may actually be one of the signs your guy friend is falling for you.
Look at it like this: none of us act 100% ourselves when we first start dating someone. We don’t. We want that person to like us so we hold back our less attractive qualities like snorting when we laugh. But you’ve known this guy for so long, you’ve forgotten that mask he probably held up when you first met. Now he’s putting it back on because he wants you to see him differently.
3. He’s Not Dating Anyone (and Makes a Point to Tell You)
Do you talk to your friend about the woes of dating and share the details when one of you goes out with someone? Or rather…did you talk about it? Maybe now you notice him making a point of telling you how he’s not dating anyone.
“There’s just no one out there for me on the dating apps,” he says, pointedly looking at you.
4. He’s Protective of You
You introduce him to a guy you’re interested in and you immediately feel him prickle up. He spends the evening telling this man all kinds of stories about your friendship…how he saved you from a bear when camping…how he was there for you during your divorce…how he held your hair back while you puked after a wild New Year’s.
He’s marking his territory, believe it or not.
Or if things don’t go well with a man you go out with, he’s ready to knock on his door and tear his head off for hurting you. He is, in a word, protective.
5. He Makes a Point to Hang Out Alone with You
Usually, you hang out with your crowd of friends, but you’ve noticed that he makes an effort to get you alone, whether that’s when you come out of the bathroom at the bar or to share a taxi home (even though another friend lives closer to you). It may even seem like he wants to say something to you, but can’t summon the courage.
6. Your Hugs are Longer
Friends hug, right? You’ve always hugged this guy. But you’re noticing that his hugs are tighter and linger longer. This alone may not be one of the signs your guy friend is falling for you, but combined with other ones, it could mean that he’s interested in taking things to the next level.
7. He’s Quick to Do Favors for You
You mentioned offhand that you didn’t have a hammer for a home project you were working on…and he showed up within the hour with one.
You rubbed your sore neck after a hard workout…and his magic fingers were ready to massage away your aches and pains.
Friends do favors for one another, sure, but you’ve noticed an increase in just how much he’s trying to do for you, and you feel like there might be something more to it than just altruism.
8. He Remembers Surprising Details About You
A month ago, you mentioned that your mom was coming to visit. Today, he says, “Hey, doesn’t your mom arrive today at 2 on Southwest Air?”
He remembers details. Like, a shocking amount of them.
I’m sure you’ve done the same with a man you were into. Everything he said was fascinating, and you etched it into your brain. Your friend is doing the same about you.
9. He Hates Anyone You Date
If you talk about going out with someone, he acts odd. Maybe he puts the guy down or lists all the reasons it won’t work out.
You have never dated a man that your friend approves of. It’s weird.
That’s because he wants you to be dating him!
10. You Just Feel It
You’re not sure exactly why you think your friend cares for you, but you just do. This, my dear, is your instinct talking to you. And it’s hugely important to listen to when dating and in life in general.
If things feel different in your friendship, that’s probably because they are. You just have to figure out what you want to do about it.
What to Do If He Has Feelings for You
If these signs that your guy friend is falling for you ring true, you have essentially two directions you can take things.
If You Reciprocate Those Feelings…
Wonderful! In a study by researchers at the University of Texas, 40% of couples were friends before they started dating. Because you already know and trust him, you’ll find it easier to be vulnerable with your friend in a relationship. So how do you move out of the friend zone?
Talk to him. You can wait for him to bring it up, or if you’re more of a direct person, you can start the conversation.
Realize that you risk messing up your friendship if dating doesn’t work out. Discuss that. How will you handle things if you date and things go sideways? How can you save your friendship?
Ask him out. He may be unsure of your feelings, but because you know he feels the same as you, be brave and take that first step.
If You Don’t Feel the Same…
As much as maybe you wish you had romantic feelings for your friend, you can’t force them. Here’s how to handle the situation with grace and hopefully keep your friendship intact.
Prepare for the conversation if he brings it up. Chances are, eventually, he’s going to say something. Let him know how important your friendship is, and tell him you don’t want to risk it by changing things.
Try not to spend too much time alone with him. This just sets the stage for him trying to kiss you or get romantic.
Talk about men you’re dating. It may seem cruel, but it’s a subtle way to tell him you’re not interested (*only do this if you don’t have a conversation about his feelings, otherwise it is a little cruel).
Have a mutual friend talk to him. If you have a shared friend, maybe she can get him to open up and then she can gently let him know that you don’t feel the same.
Whether you share feelings for your male friend or not, him falling for you will impact the friendship one way or another. It’s all about how you handle the situation.
I genuinely hope that this could be the guy for you. He’s already gotten past your barriers because he came into your world through the Friend door, not the Date door, and that gives him an edge. But if you don’t have feelings for him, own that and work on keeping the friendship together.
He recognizes that you are a high-value woman. Do you? You may be putting out signs that communicate otherwise to men. If so, I’d love you to take my High-Value Woman course so you can align your actions with what you want in love.