Dear Girl Q&A

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Dear Girl,

I have a close friend who I am starting to develop deeper feelings for, but I don't know what to do? He is really sweet, nice, caring and kind, and I think I want to be more than just friends. I am worried that if I tell him how I feel, I will lose his friendship. What should I do?

Signed Secretly in Love.

Dear Secretly in Love,

This is a very common situation you find yourself in. People often think negatively about a boy friend turning into the boyfriend. However, romantic relationships should ideally be based on love, trust, loyalty, respect, and friendship. A romantic partner is a lover and a friend. For some people there is first a romantic or sexual spark followed by a deeper feeling of friendship. For others, however, there is first the foundation of a friendship from which romantic or sexual feelings and thoughts are built. The beauty is that there is no right or wrong answer. You have obviously explored your feelings and cognition's about developing a romantic relationship with your current platonic male friend. You probably have mapped out all the possible scenarios if you were to tell him. If you are serious about the situation, I suggest you investigate your friend's feelings and perceptions. Do this by talking to him openly. Expect that your friend may be a little surprised at first. A bonus if he feels the same way! If not, he will no doubt be flattered and will have a deep-seated respect for your honesty and courage. If he tells you that he wants to be your friend only, you may feel a little awkward at first. This is perfectly normal. But at least you will be relieved, and you can say you gave it a go. If confrontation makes you weak at the knees, just remember you may feel just as uptight and awkward in his presence, not to mention frustrated, if you choose to repress your feelings. If your male friend is as close as you say he is, he will soon enough perceive that something is not quite right. A close friendship is based on trust, respect, and honesty, just to name a few. Hence, if you tell your friend how you feel, it can only enhance the friendship. Go girl!