August 2, 2013 - submitted by Branson, United States of America
Q. TEAM ORACLE QUESTION #130
Should I tell my best friend I'm in love with her?
We've been really good friends for the past 3 years now and I think I've always felt like this.
The bad thing is that she has a boyfriend and he's one of my best friends too.
Every time she has a problem with her boyfriend she always comes to me to talk about it and I'm always there to comfort her.
I feel like we're always there for each other, but I've always wanted more.
I don't know what to do anymore.
The Oracle replies:
No. If only it was as simple as yes or no eh? Here's why I personally think "no". She is in a relationship with someone else and coming to you with problems doesn't necessarily indicate she would rather be with you, just that she sees you as a close friend.
It's a huge risk and for what? Unless you know how she feels it seems like too much to gamble. Her boyfriend is one of your best friends. Friends don't do this kind of thing (well, they do but it's not good form) so you could lose a friendship. Actually, you could lose 2 as she may not be impressed with you telling her. Perhaps time will tell how she feels but for now, I wouldn't come straight out and tell her.
There is something I think you could & should do...
Given you are friends with both of them, it's not really appropriate for her to run to you when things aren't going well with her boyfriend. It's putting you in a tricky position of split loyalty. I think you are only happy about doing so because of your feelings for her. Maybe tell her that you'll be her friend and be there for her with any problems she may have except those concerning her boyfriend. I guess if you want to let her know how you feel, you could say that the reason is because you find yourself struggling to advise or listen without a biased opinion that might not be the best thing for her. If she asks why, you could elaborate or simply say "isn't it obvious?" and let her work it out. Normally I wouldn't advise anything cryptic but I honestly don't think you'll do yourself any favours by pouring out your heart without knowing whether it's reciprocated. If you do find out she feels the same, you both have a difficult situation to face. Weigh up every scenario that may play out if you do /don't tell her and tread with caution.
It's quite normal to develop feelings for friends of the opposite gender and also easy to confuse those feelings. If you truly want to be with her, think of the pros and cons and how to tell her without too much collateral damage.
If she and her boyfriend are having problems, this relationship may not last the distance. Sometimes you just have to play a waiting game.
p.s I don't recommend telling her like this chap told his best mate's wife.
Over to you.
Falling for your friends is one of the wildest roller coasters ever- everything little they do or say throws you off and makes you question your next move. I was in a similar situation, no other guy involved but still two great friends who talked a lot and I just so happened to fall head over heels for her. I think you should go for it, but heed a few pieces of advice. First, if you truly are great friends, it shouldn't matter if she says yes or no; you will still be friends either way. Next, you have to be prepared for her to say no. A close friendship is something a lot of people cherish because there aren't too many out there, and some people don't want to risk it by taking it to a whole new level. And lastly, follow your heart. You know deep down if you love her or not, and only you know whether you should or not. Overall, don't let it break your heart! I told my friend everything I was feeling about her, and she politely turned me down saying she just wasn't ready. I disagree with that statement, but as a friend, you need to respect their decision. And even though I was shot down, I never once regret have regretted my decision. The heart is the most amazingly powerful thing us humans have. No matter what, you gotta believe there is always hope out there. Best of luck! Mateo.
Well, you see, your problems are two. One is that she has a boyfriend, which means even if she likes you, which is unlikely because she's seeing someone, there would still be no room for you inside her heart. Your second problem is that she thinks you like her as a bestfriend, which indicates that she'd like you the same, but if you break it to her (and it turns out she doesn't like you back) it'd mean that you'd lose her as a friend and possibly as a lover (if she likes you back, because maybe she'll think you're a liar). There was a show I used to watch on T.V called 'Friendzoned' and I've learnt how most people react to such situations. I'm not saying that you shouldn't tell her the truth, I am just telling you what you have at risk here. Right now your friendship isn't legit. I suggest you give it a shot despite the risk factors, and you know that there are plenty of other fish in the sea. Solaf.
It sounds like you care for this person a great deal. It also sounds like she cares a lot about you. From what you wrote in your message, it seems that she may like you a lot. If someone says she doesn't like talking with other people, but she talks with you everytime when she has a problem with her boyfriend , that says something about how she feels for you...
There's a saying, "Nothing ventured, nothing gained." You won't know until you bring it up. Take a risk and see what happens. If she's not interested in a romantic relationship with you, at least you two have a great friendship to fall back on. That should count for a lot because good friends are really hard to find. As for what you should do, you know this situation better than anyone. You also know what you want and need. Based on that, you will know what you need to do. I will tell you this: be honest with her about your feelings, but don't pressure her. Let her know how much you value your friendship. Also, let her know how much you care for her. Take things slowly and see what develops. It is still your call in the end no matter what anyone here tells you. Remember- This might be the last chance you have to tell her, she might have the same feelings for you. So just reveal your love for her.
Hope this gives you the confidence boost you needed.
the best of luck to you. Layla, love and peace.
Heck yeah you should!
Never pass up a moment like this! Linda.
I'm actually in a very similar situation to you - I've had really strong feelings for one of my best friends for almost three years now, but I told him how I feel two years ago (when he was in between girlfriends). He didn't feel the same way, which you would expect to have resulted in a ruined friendship, but it didn't. He seems to have appreciated my honesty, and we're now closer than ever.
Also, I don't know how you feel about your friend coming to you with boyfriend problems, but I know that I used to feel really crap when my friend came to me with girlfriend problems. Since I've told him how I feel though, he's been a lot more sensitive about what he talks to me about - this has its good and bad points, as although he is trying to spare my feelings, it sometimes feels as though I'm being kept in the dark when it comes to parts of his personal life.
I think you should tell your friend. From what you've said, your friendship seems airtight, and I think she'll appreciate your honesty on at least some level. It may complicate your friendship slightly, but at least you'll never have regrets about "what could have happened". BUT only tell her if you're completely, 100% sure that you like her enough to risk your friendship with her boyfriend, because telling her could definitely result in tension there. Good luck! Anon, UK.
Although this is a delicate situation, I believe that the best thing to do is to be honest about your feelings. It's clear that they're not going away, and although confessing may be difficult and risky, "if you never try you'll never know." Let her know gently and ask her to be discreet about it regarding her boyfriend. Even if she isn't ready to be with you or doesn't feel the same, you'll no longer have to constantly wonder about her feelings and the possibilities. Don't forget that she could feel the same, and often times in these circumstances you cannot avoid someone's feelings getting hurt. It may very well be worth it. Good luck! Maeghan.
Yes. I had the same situation minus she doesn't have a boyfriend but I told her. Life is too short to hold your emotions within yourself especially if you love someone. She told me she doesn't love me, but I am still in love with her and I've decided to wait for her because she is worth it. But hey like in Fix You, if you never try, you'll never know. Julian.
I would tell her. I know it's risking it but if you feel like your heart can't bear to keep it a secret, I would tell her. I'm going through the same situation. I love my best friend but he has a girlfriend... If I had the chance, I would tell him. I sure hope you figure it out & best of luck! Brenda.
What a pickle to be in! First of all you are friends with both people involved, so you are at risk of losing or altering both those friendships. Ask yourself with brutal honesty, is there any indication she feels the same for you? How sad it would be if you tell her how you feel and it is not reciprocated. Is there trouble in the relationship? If it looks like there is, you could wait it out and just be there if it should falter. Continue to be a good friend and who knows you may end up being more one day, but I think it's risky to tell her how you feel, there is a lot to lose for all involved. Laurie.
No you shouldn't. It doesn't even make sense. What are you planning to achieve? What kind of love would it turn out to be for you? If you truly are in love with this girl, then maybe you should wait until their relationship hit rock bottom and they are no longer together, then you can make your intentions known. Be realistic and do the right thing. Keyo.
It sounds as though you two have a very strong friendship, which is what good relationships should be built on. This is a tricky situation because you don’t want to make her feel awkward or upset your other friend, but it’s also painful to keep that bottled up. If you’re close with both of them, don’t do something rash and ruin both of those friendships. Whatever you do, don’t pressure her into anything or make her feel guilty for dating someone else. Maybe it’s best not to say anything directly, but rather show her how much you care about her by continuing to be a good friend, helping her through her boyfriend troubles, and offering advice. The only thing you can do is be patient. If she’s worth waiting for, she’ll understand how you feel and it will have been worth the wait. Hailey.
You love her, but the question is how much do you know her? Did it ever seem to you that she could feel similar? Maybe she wants you for her best friend for ever, not more, but also not less. She seems to have trust in you, otherwise she would not talk to you about her relationship. Though, imagine she would be your girlfriend and she talks about your problems with your friend? When she is complaining again about her boyfriend, you could ask her seriously what keeps her there. Tell her you want to see her happy, because she means very much to you. Don’t say “as a best friend”. You could change roles with her and tell her you are unlucky in love. Watch her reactions. When she feels back she probably will not be able to hide it. Or keep it simple and just tell her you love her, but be prepared that she could refuse you. Anyway she should have a chance to know, if she doesn’t so far. Accept her answer, whatever it is. Your feelings for her are yours, no one can take them away from you and they will give you the strength to see her happy with someone else. I hope for you things will turn out well. Good luck. L.Q.
Let's look at it two ways Branson. On one hand you don't tell her how you feel and keep the friendship but betray yourself. On the other hand you tell her how you feel and whether she reciprocates the feeling or not you end up staying true to yourself and the feelings that come from within. How you respond will lead to how you respond to other situations in life. Ultimately your own growth, happiness, and self-esteem will benefit in the long run from telling her, and staying quiet will lead to negative consequences in the short term, and the future. Trust me I went through the exact situation. Growth and happiness to you. Take care. Sufyan, Canada.
Would you being willing to risk almost everything you have with her on a game of chance?
You need to be careful how you handle the whole boyfriend factor - she might not tell you everything. There are things my best friend withholds from me about her boyfriend.
If they break up, be there for her. Don't expect more from her if this happens, she will be going through a lot and need someone there for her . The last thing she will need is the thought of another relationship.
If there is no end in sight for her and her boyfriend see it like this. If you truly love someone enough, you'd give up anything for them, that includes letting her go because in the end all you should want is for her to be happy. This doesn't mean you stop talking to her, it just simply means let her be with her boyfriend and be happy that is is happy. You can still be there for her when she needs you and you can still talk to her all the time.
Are you ready for her answer?
This will be a major decision that either makes or breaks your friendship with her, so accept the negatives and positives of either outcome before you say anything.
REMEMBER, her happiness is as important as yours, do what is best for you in the long run.. If it doesn't work out, don't give up, this will be a life lesson you look back at and can take away from it. Nathan.
Thanks to all those who replied to this week’s question. Remember, Team Oracle is open to anyone so if you fancy replying, click to read this week's, and send us your answer.