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How You Can Tell Your Best Close Friend You Love Them
There is little in life that is more frustrating that having deep feelings for someone who you're "just friends" with. And there is little that is more frightening than to consider revealing those feelings to your friend because you run the risk of jeopardizing the friendships. For that reason, it is important to think carefully before telling your friend that you're in love. It is also important to prepare emotionally once you've made the decision that you're going to communicate your feelings to your friend. And finally, you'll need to find the right way to tell your friend to ease the awkwardness of the situation.
First things first, make sure that you really want to tell your friend about your feelings. Are you certain that you're in love? Do you want to tell your friend because you are hoping that your revelation will lead to a relationship? Or is this a situation in which you just need to get the feelings off of your chest even though you don't think it's likely that your relationship is ever going to be anything more than platonic? Take some time to really get a good grasp on why you are interested in sharing this with your friend at the current time. Work through your thoughts in a journal or talk to a counselor to explore the reasons motivating you to share these feelings and make a thought-through decision about whether to proceed or to leave things as they are.
If you've decided that you are indeed going to tell your friend that you're in love, you should prepare emotionally for the ramifications of that. You should consider what might happen to your life if your friend decides that he/she doesn't share your feelings and doesn't want to be as close to your for awhile after the revelation. Think carefully about what you will do to protect yourself in this situation. This includes creating a support network of other friends and loved ones who can spend time with you if this happens. Of course, you're hoping that this isn't the end result of your revelation, but you should prepare for it anyway, just in case. You don't want to be left with no best friend after the conversation has taken place.
You should also think about what you want from your friend. Being able to clearly articulate that is going to make the conversation go more smoothly. Just revealing your feelings for your friend to deal with can be shocking and overwhelming to the friend. But if you have a plan in mind and know what you want, you give your friend the chance to make a decision without being so overwhelmed. Know what you want in case the friend shares the feelings and what you want in case he/she doesn't. For example, you may want to proceed to a romantic relationship if those feelings are shared but to discontinue the friendship entirely if they are not. Alternatively, you may want to spend more time developing your relationship if the feelings are shared but would be content to stay friends as is if not. Know what you want so you can tell your friend when the conversation takes place.
Finally, you'll need to tell your friend, of course. You should pick an appropriate time and setting for doing so. Don't just burst out with your emotions one day as your having a quick lunch before returning to the office. Make sure that you have the time and privacy for a complete conversation about the topic. If you feel like it's better done in a public place, go for coffee or dinner. Otherwise do it in the comfort of one of your homes. Be clear and honest in your announcement about your emotions. Let the other person know what you are feeling and what you want to happen from here on out. Then wait and see what he/she has to say. You might be surprised to find that these feelings were shared all along and your friend just didn't know how to tell you!