You look around the room and notice someone looking at you. You meet his eyes and instantly look away. Why is he looking at you? What does it mean? Could he like you? And most importantly of all Ė what if you don't like him THAT way?
While there are tons of magazines and even books on dealing with boys that you are already dating, there isn't much out there about boys who you don't really want to date. It seems like there is much more that can be confusing and stressful before dating than after. I'm not saying the anticipation and excitement of crushes is not fun, but it can be really messy, too.
In a perfect world, you like him and he likes you. You flirt a little, you talk a little, you text a little. Eventually you start hanging around each other and claim to be boyfriend and girlfriend. This is all well and good. What happens though, when it doesn't work out in such a neat little mold?
Far from Perfect
He likes you, you like some other guy. He's really nice, and you don't want to hurt his feelings, so what do you do? Or, you like a boy a little bit, but not enough to want to be his girlfriend. You like having him around, and don't want to lose his company. Do you have to go out with him?
The answer to this, of course, is NO! You can make it all the way through school and never go out with anyone. That is perfectly okay and even more normal than you may think. You can simply be friends, maybe even best friends, with guys. Believe it or not, most boys have interesting things to say and think having friends who is girls are pretty neat.
The Guy Friend
The guy friend can be more complicated than a friendship with a girl. People might assume you are together when you really are not, and future boyfriends of yours (or girlfriends of his) might feel like they have to compete with you. Anyone with a guy friend can tell you it can be sticky, but it's well worth it. Besides, the longer you hang out, the more everyone knows the truth about your friendship.
Boys tend to be a bit blunter than girls. They don't play games and they don't stab each other in the back (usually.) They don't ask you hard questions about how their pants fit. Usually, they just tell jokes, talk about normal stuff, and hang out the same way most girls do.
Want a Guy Friend?
If you've got a boy that you want to get to know better, the best thing to do is be honest. Tell him that you aren't really interested in romance if he is. You might also let him know that you would rather be good friends than have to deal with the drama of a breakup and anything your parents might dish out. Any decent guy will respect that.
If a guy doesn't seem interested in romance, but you just think he's funny or nice, that doesn't mean you have to start planning your wedding. You don't want to marry all your funny girlfriends do you? Just start hanging out with his group of friends or partner up in class for a project. Treat him the same way you would treat your girlfriends. Tell a joke, laugh, and be friendly. Pretty soon, you'll know him as well as you know your best friend, and that kind of friendship is well worth any effort.