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Let's Be Friends

The dreaded words no love sick individual wants to hear.

What does it even mean? On the face of it a wholesome gesture in an attempt to stay in contact with someone you like but not romantically. But in reality a meaningless sentiment intended to shroud the tragic reality that you see no future with someone romantic or otherwise.

And of course I get it, we want to spare people's feelings and the intention of the line is to make both parties feel better. But the whole thing is indicative of a very real problem with modern day dating. The fact that no ones seems to say what they mean or mean what they say.

I guess dating can be hard, navigating any kind of social relationship has its challenges and forces you to constantly evaluate yourself and the people around you. Now of course I'm writing this because I may or may not have experienced this in my own life but also I think the whole "let's be friends" thing is a product of something that isn't really talked about in the 21st century dating scene.

We have dates that go well, we have dates that don't go so well. And either case people will hear about those. But there is a lot of grey in between areas. And one that is probably more common than you think, is a date going so well but you still don't want to continue seeing that person again in a romantic sense. Of course the reason could be a multitude of things. Maybe your plans for the future don't quite match, maybe they live abroad or maybe you've just realised you're actually not ready to date. And when we find something good, we don't want to let it go and maybe deep down we do want a friendship. But it's not enough just to want it, you have to act on it.

So let's assume that every person that's ever said "let's be friends" genuinely wants to be friends. It's no longer an empty gesture. And of course changing the foundations of a relationship so quickly can be hard and awkward but all the more reason why you need to put in the work. And if you're the one proposing that you should be friends, then the majority of the heavy lifting has to come from you. If you want to change the terms of the relationship then you have to enact them. It's not enough to just say and expect the other party to act accordingly. Especially if they were/are interested in you romantically.

Dating is actually quite ironic because when you're in those initial stages you actually have to be quite selfish. You need to know what you want, and put you're feelings first but of course that will all change once you actually get into a relationship. However, it's okay to be selfish. And there's a way of doing it that isn't detrimental to the other person. The only way you can do it is by being open and honest with your intentions, no matter what they are. And yes sometimes it can be hard, but it'll save you a lot of heartbreak later down the line.

When you get to a certain point in your life, you don't want anymore "friends". You don't want to waste your time. You crave something real and meaningful with someone who will satisfy those needs. Spare us the friend zone, move with empathy, love and integrity and then eventually good things will come your way. Well... that's what we have to believe other wise the dating scene would be a lot more chaotic than it already is...

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