I love my best friend

After years of being attached at the hip, you’ve finally realised, “I’m in love with my best friend.” Do you share your feelings or keep it quiet? Is it worth risking the friendship? Falling in love with your best friend can be extremely tricky territory to navigate. We’re here to help you figure it out.

A young couple are sitting on a bed. They are talking about being in love with their best friend. This is a wide-angle image.

In love with my best friend of the opposite sex

Here are some key things to think about before professing your true love to your best mate, and potentially changing the entire dynamic between you two: 

Are you sure? Think long and hard about the power of the statement ‘I love my best friend’ before you share your feelings with them. Be absolutely certain that you really want to make a go of it, especially if you guys have been close friends for a long time. Having a quick fling is not really a reason to go about changing everything on someone you care a lot about. Instead, try having a fling with someone else you like. That way you don’t risk losing your friend and the relationship that you’ve built with them.

Are they single? If you’re sure that you’re ready to make this thing a romantic relationship, is your friend single? If they’re already all coupled up then it is probably best for you to take a step back. You might just have to wait until things come to a natural end, if your heart is truly set on them. In the mean time, don’t start slagging their partner off or interfering in any other way, no matter how tempting it may be. Of course they might not split up, in which case you have to be realistic and move on to another love interest.

Are they flirting with you? If your friend is single then, by all means, start flirting. You should also look for signs that they may be flirting with you too. But remember that there’s no such thing as a 100% definite sign, unless they start snogging you (consensually, of course). Be wary of becoming a stereotype a.k.a, getting horrendously drunk and droning on about how you’ve always loved them and how you’ve already got babies’ names picked out. This is quite likely to make them run for the hills, even if you’ve had tonnes of good times with them before. 

Go for it. Falling in love is exciting. Be brave, find a quiet moment, and ask them if they want to go out with you sometime. Yes, you want to be romantic partners – make that point clear. Let them know there’s no pressure, even if they say ‘no’. No harm, no foul. Either way, you should be prepared for the dynamic to change after you’ve asked them out. Hopefully, it’s for the best.

In love with my best friend of the same sex

If your ‘I love my best friend’ revelation happens to be with someone of the same sex, you face the same risks as straight mates who fell in love: embarrassment and losing a close friend. Should things go your way, the benefits are the same too: a partner you can trust and be yourself around. If your mate is still in the closet, you asking them out might trigger a homophobic reaction. Just know this has nothing to do with you, it’s purely a defence mechanism. Fortunately, most people aren’t like this, but it doesn’t hurt to think ahead.

If your best friend says no

Be nice, no matter how disappointed you feel. You may have built things up in your own head, but they just didn’t see things in that way. No one’s fault. Make an effort to keep in touch, but don’t get too hung up about the great love that never was. Chalk it down to experience. Keep them as a friend, but make sure your life doesn’t revolve around them. Have fun with other people and try to move on. Know that in time, this will just become an anecdote for your best-selling memoir. 

But for now, If you’re feeling totally down and broken hearted, check out our article on how to mend a broken heart.

If they say yes

Lucky you. Go for it.

Have you fallen in love with your best mate? Share your story on our discussion boards.

Next Steps

By Nishika Melwani

Updated on 12-Dec-2021