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We’re “just friends”, but I don’t want to be – and I don’t think he does either - December 27th 2020, 11:41 AM

[FONT=""][COLOR=""][SIZE=""]Hi.

So, I’m in Year 9 of school at the moment and there’s this boy I have a crush on. We’ve been friends since we were about 5 and there’s always been a bit more than your average platonic relationship in the mix too, though we never actually defined it. (Nothing ever actually happened physically, bar me hugging him once when we were around 8/9 – bear in mind we were children!)

When we moved up to secondary school, things started to get very complicated. People were starting to have girlfriends and boyfriends, and generally start becoming interested in relationships. A group of “popular” boys – you know the type – started to bully us because of our relationship, getting at us both indirectly by hurting the other person and by hurting us in person. It was all verbal, so nobody really noticed. One of my friends even thought the ringleader had a crush on me, because he was coming over and talking to me so much! To prevent things from getting worse, we decided to stay as “just friends”, though nothing was said about how we really felt. We went to the teachers and got the bullying sorted out.

Two years later, things have changed. The bullying stopped when we reported it, but we stayed as “just friends” for continuity and because we were still cautious that it would still start up again. In Year 7, I didn’t really like him that much, but now I really, REALLY do. I think he likes me too, as all of the signs are there – eye contact, subtle flirting, reactions from friends, etc. but I can’t be sure. In any normal situation, I’d just come out with it and tell him when we had a private moment that I liked him, but I think you would all agree that this isn’t any old situation, and there are multiple factors in play. I wouldn’t even mind if we didn’t go out publicly, and just sort of knew that we liked each other and would go out if we could. What do I do now, and how do I tell him that I want to be more than just casual friends?

Any and all advice would be welcome [/size][/color][/font]
   
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Re: We’re “just friends”, but I don’t want to be – and I don’t think he does either - February 16th 2021, 03:00 PM

Firstly, I'm so very sorry you haven't had a reply in almost two months!

I don't know if your situation has changed since, so I'll reply the best I can based on what information you've given at the time of writing.

Your situation sounds absolutely horrifying. The fact you had to deny your feelings solely to prevent bullying. Children can be incredibly cruel!

While I'm glad to hear that the bullying has since stopped, I can certainly understand why you'd feel cautious in trying for something more than just friends. The fear of bullying must have had quite an effect on you.

If you haven't already, I don't think there would be any harm in expressing how you feel to him privately. After all, no one but you and he will know, and who knows where it may take you?

In the event you both agree to become more than just friends, I don't think keeping your relationship private is a bad thing. After all, you have a huge bullying concern. I have to wonder though, why exactly were those children bullying you both in the first place? Surely there must have been a specific reason beyond them just making their own entertainment?

However you choose to proceed, it's entirely up to you and your friend how open or private you keep the situation. It's not as though it's anyone's business but what's between the two of you.


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