The fun stuff
NSW Government

It’s something most of us will go through at some point. You really like someone, you hang out a lot and have fun together. You have a crush on them, and you think they must feel the same way, but when you build up the courage to ask them out on a date they tell you they just want to be friends. This is usually called the ‘friend zone’.

It can be hard to feel you’re in the ‘friend zone’, but romantic chemistry can’t be forced, and time spent with someone doesn’t mean they owe you anything. No amount of talking, texting or hanging out means anyone is entitled to sex or a relationship. Two people can just be friends, and can like each other a lot without experiencing any sexual attraction. This isn’t a bad thing – friendships are some of our most meaningful relationships.

Friendships are some of our most meaningful relationships.

Some tips to consider when the person you like just wants to be friends:

  • Consider the positive – you’ve built a great friendship
  • Don’t be angry or resentful – that will just ruin any chance of the friendship continuing
  • Don’t pressure them to change their mind – respect their decision
  • Hang out with other friends to get over this person if you need to – it’s understandable that your feelings are hurt and it may be hard to be around them for a while
  • Ask someone else out – you might just find those mutual feelings elsewhere
  • Rejection is all part of being human. It’s not great when it happens, but how we handle it says a lot about us.

If you want to know more you can ring the NSW Sexual Health Infolink on 1800 451 624 between 9:00am and 5:30pm Monday to Friday to talk with a sexual health nurse. It’s confidential and free when you call from a landline. Got a sexual health question? Ask Nurse Nettie.