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13 Things Not to Do When You Like Someone

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are based on the personal experiences of the author, and are not intended to be taken as professional dating advice.

I am not one to give relationship advice, but my zero percent success rate offers some serious insight on what not to do when you like someone. My track record at this point is honestly impressive — I think I’ve mastered how to not do relationships so much that I feel it is a talent. Looking back at the ridiculous things I’ve done when I have liked someone, I thought I’d share in the hope that these are mistakes not many others will have to make.

Here is a list of 13 things I’ve done when I’ve liked someone that did not result in them liking me back … and mostly resulted in the opposite.

1. ​Don’t make it a family affair until you know it’s mutual.

Don’t tell your whole family that someone finally likes you back and that they can meet them before you actually know for sure that they like you back. Oops! Breaking those news always makes for a fun family FaceTime session.

2. Don’t plan out the rest of your life assuming you’ll get married.

Jumping to conclusions is always dangerous. Don’t assume they’re The One just because they have a couple stellar qualities you look for in someone before you even know if they like you. Because then, when and if you find out they don’t like you, you’ll have a mini crisis because your future plans are down the drain, and you’ll have to digest a premature divorce in your head for a marriage that never even happened.

3. Don’t work out a ton just because you think that getting a great body will get them to notice you.

Don’t put your body through hell because you think a hot bod will get their attention. Anyone who likes you more for that reason alone is not worth your time, and shouldn’t be considered for a relationship anyway. Work out for yourself because you love your body and you enjoy taking care of yourself, not for somebody who doesn’t already make you feel like you’re enough as you are!

4. Don’t tell them that they were in your dream last night if you can’t tell them the content of the dream.

They will ask what happened, and then you’ll freeze up because all you can think about is how they held your hand at the top of a mountain and you died of happiness. You know you can’t actually say those things because you’ve only talked a few times and that would be creepy, so then you’ll just end up saying “we went exploring,” and that just sounds so much worse.

5. Don’t sniff them if they smell good.

They might tell all their cool friends, and you’ll be known as the weird girl who sniffs people … and then they won’t walk too close to you in fear that they’ll get viciously sniffed. Not the reputation I would go for, personally.

6. Don’t text them in metaphors unless you know they’ll appreciate it. Otherwise, you’ll die inside when they don’t answer.

For example, don’t text them saying “I feel like a sunburnt fingernail” just because you like metaphors and don’t want to say what you actually feel, because it sounds something like, “Please talk to me. I’m lonely.” Not everyone vibes with metaphors — especially weird ones — so it may be better to withhold them for now because when they don’t answer you’ll feel 10 times worse than before. You’ll stare at your phone wondering why you actually thought someone would respond to a text so metaphorically confusing you forget what it meant. But honestly, I’ll know it’s the right person when they know how to respond to my weird metaphors, so I’m not stopping anytime soon, because that would mean altering myself for others, and I’m not about that.

7. Don’t stare at them out your window and get caught.

Don’t get caught staring from a creepily far distance, because they may just stop talking to you forever. And when it happens a second time, you may find yourself worried about the maintenance of your clean criminal record.

8. Don’t think it’s your fault if they don’t like you back.

Just because one person doesn’t think you’d be right for them, doesn’t mean you’re not right for someone else, or that there’s something wrong with you. Think of it this way: we are all books with unique stories, not everyone who reads us will love us or understand us or appreciate our details. But someday, someone will read you to sleep and carry your story everywhere they go and wake up excited to read you all over again.

9. Don’t post a picture just so they’ll see it.

You should be living your life for you, not for others approval and validation. If you feel the need to prove yourself to someone so they acknowledge your worth, that’s a sign they’re not right for you.

10. Don’t rely on them for your happiness.

Happiness is not a destination, it is not a person, it is not a weight, it is not a grade, happiness is within you and your journey. Don’t wait for Prince or Princess Charming to grant you happiness.

11. Don’t withhold your opinion just because you want to please them and not disagree with them. 

If they say something you don’t agree with, stand up for what you believe in and share your perspective, because when you eventually realize they suck, you’ll regret not dropping your knowledge on them.

12. Don’t settle for someone who treats you like crap just because you’re lonely.

Putting your love into empty promises will only leave you more empty. Sometimes the only cure to loneliness is learning how to be alone in the first place.

13. Don’t let them determine your self-love.

Don’t mistake their lack of recognizing your worth as a lack of your actual worth. Just because they may not see your beauty doesn’t mean it isn’t 100 percent there. Just because they’re not into you doesn’t mean you don’t have permission to love yourself. It can be hard to feel fulfilled purely with self-love, but when you learn to love yourself when no one else will, that is when you will find and receive the best love from others.

Yes, I did all of these things, but I do not regret them. I can share my mistakes and hope that I can spare someone the pain and humiliation of making the same ones. At the end of the day, mistakes are just lessons disguised with hurt. Experience is how we learn, so don’t be afraid to keep making mistakes and being yourself until you find someone who takes your mistakes and flaws and loves you all the same. Make sure that person is you to begin with.

Images/GIFs: 1, 2, 34

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Olivia Laughlin

U Mass Amherst

Hello! My name is Olivia Laughlin and I am a sophomore college student majoring in Communication and minoring in Education. I absolutely love to write, especially poetry. I am also a runner, vegan, artist, singer, sock addict, camp counselor and in love with my dog! I think the world is a spectacular, terrifying, and beautiful place that I love talking about and I hope you enjoy my perspective.
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