Love Sick: Is This a Date?

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The world of dating can be a very confusing place. You worry about how soon you should call someone after a first date, when to sleep with someone for the first time and whether your parents will accept the person you’re dating. But you can’t worry about all that if you’re not even sure if you’re dating in the first place!

Being that I’m a friendly person who gets along pretty well with guys, there’s been a handful of times that I’ve been on the dreaded “Is This a Date?” date. I’ve had guys who I considered to be just friends ask me to hang out with them and I agree thinking it’s just a friendly get together. But then I get there and it all seems too date-y. The way they offer to pay for my meal, hold doors for me and attempt to have prolonged┬ádirect eye contact with me starts sending warning bells off in my head, finally realizing, oh crap, is this a date? Then it just gets super awkward because I don’t have those romantic feelings but by agreeing to go on this “date” it gives the impression I’m interested.

Not wanting to lose a friendship, but also not wanting to pursue a romantic relationship, can make this situation┬átricky. But it’s not impossible.

First, you need to make clear your feelings. You don’t have to straight up say, “I just want to be friends.” Instead say, “You’re such an awesome friend,” or “I’m so glad we’re friends.” Emphasize the word friend. By making it clear to him that you consider him as just a friend, he’ll take the hint.

Talk about someone you are interested in. This sounds kind of cruel, but by saying how hot you think someone is or talking about a guy you’re interested in, you’re sending out the vibe that you’ve got other dudes in mind. This will be a clear indicator to him that you don’t think of him in that way.

When he asks you to hang out, try turning it into a group function. Suggest he bring and friend and you bring a friend so it can’t really count as a date and seems more like you’re all just a bunch of friends hanging out. Extra points if you bring a single friend that he can take an interest in instead.

If you’ve done all this and it still seems like he doesn’t get the hint, then you will have to resort to upfront honesty. Say something like, “Look, I think you’re really cool and I love hanging out with you, I just hope you don’t think this is anything more than that.” He will be a little heart broken, but at least he won’t feel led on and he can start taking interest in someone new.

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