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Sex + Relationships

Real Live College Guy Sean: Am I in the Friend Zone?

Broke from calling late night love lines for advice? Looking for the lowdown on the hoedown when it comes to college guys? Real Live College Guy Sean is here to help you pick apart the mind of the average college guy. Whether it’s avoiding that awkward weekend hook-up or full-on relationship advice, Sean is here to save the day!

I chill with this guy who lives down the street from me basically every day. We mostly hang out alone, but sometimes with my other guy friends. He texts me first 90 percent of the time and is always down to hang out, but he never stays too long and he never makes a move! I have a huge crush on him, but I can't make the first move because I'm always too nervous and unsure. Have I been friend-zoned, or is he too nervous to make a move as well? How can I tell if he's into me without being too aggressive and scaring him? – Misled at Marymount Manhattan


First things first––relax! It sounds like you’re in a good place and I wouldn’t say you’ve waited too long. Plus, as a general rule, guys who text you first “90 percent of the time” are probably into you. Depending on how daring you are, perhaps think about making the first move! No one is perfect, but if the opportunity arises, why not go for it? I’ve always said that I’d rather live with rejection than regret. Plus, guys love when girls are the ones to make a move. It’s an awesome change of pace and it shows that you’re into a relationship as much as we are. As a bonus, we also can stop worrying about timing if you take a big leap.

I also don’t think that you’ve been friend-zoned… yet. More commonly, guys will hang around and comfortably play along when we’re unsure of how you feel about getting romantic. However, there is a limit to how long we’ll wait around before it starts to get old. Unless you meet a guy who enjoys flirting for sport (who knows? They probably exist…), it’s time to take action. When you’re together and you laugh at one of his jokes, playfully punch him on the shoulder or the knee. Introduce touch to your relationship and watch how he reacts. If he’s uncomfortable, you’ll likely see it in his face. He’ll probably change the subject or look away.

I’d suspect that, as you said, this guy is a bit nervous. Next time you hang out, try doing something he enjoys so he’s not as anxious. Does he love seeing live acts? See if one of his favorite bands is in town. Is he a big golfer? Why not follow him onto the course? Is he a skydiver? Well, you’re on your own there. The point is if you guys hang out doing something he’s passionate about, he’s less likely to be nervous around you.

You haven’t been friend-zoned until he starts calling you “bro” or says you’re “like his sister.” And since this hasn’t begun, you still have time to prevent it from happening. As I mentioned earlier, touch will go a long way in showing genuine interest. Unfortunately, this is also where guys begin to worry about the friend zone.  However, if you introduce playful touch to your conversations, it won’t be long before you’ll either gain the courage to make a move, or he will make one, since he’ll be curious to see if you’ll reciprocate.

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Sean is a senior at the University of Pittsburgh majoring in communications and minoring in film studies. Attending NYU in the fall to pursue a Masters in Journalism, Sean enjoys writing about virtually anything. In his time at Pitt, Sean has worked as a DJ for an automotive program on campus and abroad in London.Sean is originally from Rhode Island, which is far from Pittsburgh, but he is fond of the scenic drive. Sean likes tea instead of coffee, photography, and fire alarm testing (through his cooking). Sean also enjoys playing guitar and piano, skiing, golfing, and practical jokes. You can follow Sean on Twitter at @seanmcfarland1.
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