It can be a tricky time when the guy you’ve got feelings for is a good friend of yours. Not only do you risk ruining your friendship – and friendship group – if you tell him and it’s not reciprocated, but it can often be difficult turning a friendship into a relationship, especially if you’ve been friends for a long time.
However, it’s even more difficult when the guy you like tells you he just wants to be friends with you and nothing more. Whether you met on a dating site, or you’ve been part of the same friendship group for years, it can be hard when you know there’s no chance of it blossoming into a relationship.
But what happens when the guy you like tells you he just wants to be friends but acts like he wants more? This is a very common situation and can make you feel confused about his feelings for you, giving you false hope that he might, one day, decide he wants to be more than friends.
From a fear of commitment to just liking the attention he gets from you, if the guy you like has told you he just wants to maintain a friendship with you but acts like he wants more by flirting or asking you out on dates, then the following explanations could be why.
He’s Scared of Commitment
A fear of commitment is one of the most common reasons for a guy to try and maintain a relationship with a woman, but act like he wants more. If the guy you like always flirts with you, asks you out and stays at your house, but maintains that he just wants to be friends – you might have a commitment phobe on your hands.
It’ll be clear to you if he’s afraid of commitment, as you’ll notice that he’ll do anything to avoid a relationship, such as dating lots of women and not getting too involved with anyone, so if he tells you he just wants to be friends but treats you like more than that, then this might just be the reason.
Just like with women, men can develop a fear of commitment for a number of different reasons. Whether they’ve never had a real relationship before, they’ve been cheated on in the past, or they watched their parents go through a tricky divorce – a fear of commitment can stem from anywhere and cause a man to avoid a relationship at all costs.
If you think the guy you like might be afraid of commitment, you should look for the following signs:
- He’s got a lot of female friends
- He’s never been in a relationship
- He keeps women at arm’s length
- He has a lot of casual relationships
- He goes on a lot of dates but they never progress
- He ghosts women when things start to get serious
- He never gets emotionally invested in women
If you think that a fear of commitment might be the reason he doesn’t want your relationship to progress to the next level, then it might be worth having a conversation with him about his reasons. If he’s got a deep-rooted fear of commitment, then it might be difficult to change his mindset, so it might be worth trying to find a man without any commitment issues!
It’s also worth considering whether you’d really want to pursue a relationship with someone who has commitment issues, as they can be emotionally unavailable and generally difficult to maintain a relationship with.
He Doesn’t Want to Ruin Your Friendship
If the man you’re interested in tells you he just wants to be friends with you but is acting like he wants more, it might be because he’s afraid of ruining your friendship, especially if you’ve known each other for a long time.
It can be difficult to turn a friendship into a relationship, and only a lucky few people are able to do it. Being friends first can be a good basis for a relationship, not only do you know each other incredibly well, but you can avoid the awkward first-meetings with friends and family too, as you already know them!
However, turning a friendship into a relationship can also be awkward too. Not only can it be difficult to sleep with a good friend for the first time, but getting to know each other on a more intimate level doesn’t always work and can lead to a break down in the friendship.
So if you’ve been good friends for a long time and he tells you he just wants to stay friends with you, but acts like he wants more, he might be afraid of losing not only you, but his friendship group too.
If this is the case, you need to have a discussion about how important your friendship is to both of you and establish whether or not the two of you are actually compatible as a couple, as opposed to just on a sexual level. If you both think it could work between the two of you, then it might be worth trying to pursue a relationship with each other, but agree that if it doesn’t work out then nothing will change in your friendship group.
This will help to alleviate his worries and see that you’re mature enough to deal with any situation which may arise from the two of you dating.
However, if you have a discussion with him about the situation and it’s clear that he just wants to keep you as a friend, then you need to address the situation with him and let him know that the way he’s treating you isn’t acceptable.
Whether he just flirts with you when he’s drunk, or often invites you out for dinner or drinks, if he treats you as more than a friend, but maintains that a friendship is all he wants, then you need to tell him that he can’t have it both ways and he needs to choose. He can’t have his cake and eat it too!
He Likes The Attention He Gets from You
Whether you’ve been friends for years or you met a matter of months ago, if a man tells you he just sees you as a friend, but acts like he wants more, it might be because he likes the attention he gets from you.
A man like this can often come across as a bit of a player, charming women, flirting with them, but never settling down or dating someone seriously. If you recognise these signs in the man you’re interested in, it might be that he just likes female attention and isn’t ready to settle down.
Any single person would be lying if they said they didn’t enjoy getting attention from the opposite sex, so if he can have your undivided attention so the two of you can flirt when he sees you without having to commit to a relationship, then why wouldn’t he?
Additionally, if the two of you are sleeping together, but he still maintains that you’re just friends, then he’s getting the best of both worlds. Not only is he getting the girlfriend experience without actually having to commit, but he’s also able to go out and get attention from other women whenever he wants, which isn’t fair on you.
If you’re not happy with the way he’s treating you, then you need to have a conversation with him and tell him it’s unacceptable, especially if you’ve got strong feelings for him. By telling you there’ll never be anything between the two of you, but then giving you false hope, he’s playing with your emotions and stringing you along – preventing you from finding someone who would be willing to commit to you.
If he doesn’t respect that and continues to play with your feelings and emotions, then it might be worth evaluating whether you even want to keep him around as a friend, let alone a potential boyfriend!
It’s Bad Timing
Whether he’s afraid of commitment, has just got out of a serious relationship, or just isn’t ready to settle down, the guy you like might just want to maintain a friendship with you to keep you where he wants you until he’s ready to settle down.
If a man tells you that he wants to keep you as a friend, but is always flirting with you and acting like he wants more, he might actually want more, but just not at this point in time. So if the guy you like wants to keep you around as a friend, it might be because he sees potential between the two of you, but you’ve just come along at the wrong time.
Whether he needs a few months to get over his ex-girlfriend, or he’s going through a busy period at work – a man who tells you he wants you around, but won’t commit to you, might just be biding his time until his life is a little less hectic.
Although it’s great news that he’s interested in you and isn’t just leading you on, you need to evaluate whether or not he’s worth waiting for. A guy who can’t see your potential and want to snap you up immediately might not actually be worth waiting around for. After all, if he’s willing to risk losing you to another man, can he truly see what you’re worth?
If you still want to wait for him to clear his head and be prepared to develop a relationship with you, you need to consider whether or not that’s something you want to deal with. Not only might you have to watch him flirt with other women and not be able to do anything about it, but not being able to act the way you want to with the guy you really fancy can be completely draining and leave you feeling stressed, unhappy and insecure and actually lead you to resent him instead.
So before it gets to that point, it’s important to talk to him about the way you feel and ask him whether he thinks he’ll ever be ready to start dating you. If the answer is no, then you know exactly where you stand and you can talk to him about the way he treats you.
However, if the answer is yes, not only is that great news, but you can also find out how long he thinks you might be waiting for and whether or not you want to stick around for that long.
He’s Letting You Down Gently
This one might not be that easy to hear.
If the guy you’re interested in tells you he just wants to be friends, then he might just be trying to let you down gently to avoid hurting your feelings or making you feel insecure.
If you think he acts like he wants more than a friendship with you, then you should evaluate the way he acts around other women too, as it might just be that he’s a flirty person. If you notice him treating his other female friends the way he treats you, then it that should make it clear that he is, in fact, only interested in maintaining a friendship with you and nothing more.
It’s also common for men to tell women – and women to tell men – that they just see them as a friend to let them down gently after a first date, so if you went on an amazing date with this guy, but he texted you the next day to say he saw it on more of a friendship level, then he might just be sparing your feelings.
Alcohol, being caught up in the moment and poor judgement on his part can all be contributing factors to him acting like he wants to be more than friends with you. However, upon contemplation he might realise that the two of you aren’t compatible and he’s not interested in seeing you again, leading to him telling you he just sees you as a friend.
If this happens to you, it can be hurtful. However, you need to cut your losses and move on to a guy who you really click with.
So whether he’s scared of commitment, or just had a few too many beers, if a guy tells you he just wants to be friends but treats you like more, it’s important to have a conversation with him to stop him from leading you on any further.