Ask A Dude: Is It Worth Possibly Ruining The Friendship?

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    Posted in College, Dating, Love

Hi Dude,

I could use a little guy advice!

So I’m friends with a great group of guys, and we hang out all the time. I’ve never thought of most of them as anything more than friends, but there is one that I’ve started to have a crush on. He’s more of a friend of the guys than a close friend of mine, but we know each other and have hung out a few times. I don’t want to get friend zoned by him accidentally though. There are a ton of girls out there who are sexy or gorgeous and I don’t think I’m one of those. My friends call me cute or pretty. I’m a little self conscious of my noticeable chest (32DD), and sometimes I get a little shy around guys I like (such as this guy) or I feel it’s just easier to not cross that line because I don’t want to screw anything up. As I read in your blogs, I know I keep things pretty close to the chest since I have a fear of rejection. I’m really comfortable with this group of guy friends, but I just don’t want to screw up the dynamic of my friends if I make a move on this guy. I don’t even know how I’d approach this situation in the first place.

Your thoughts,

One of the Bros?

Dear One of the Bros?,

Upsetting a safe dynamic is a scary proposition. After all, you don’t want to end up losing ground you’ve already gained by shaking things up. Unfortunately, that’s EXACTLY the risk you have to be willing to take. Here’s the kicker: you may find out that it isn’t much of a risk!

Oftentimes we end up overestimating how big of an impact something will have. It’s a consequence of our own fears and insecurities. To us, we’re tempting the end of the world, realistically the earth’s probably not going to move (I try not to say too many things with absolute certainty. You can always be wrong. Plus, certainty’s boring, and sexist, like Whitney). I would take a hard look at the situation and really try to see what you’d actually lose by approaching him. Your friends? No. His friendship? Probably not. Your dignity? You might gain some more for the bravery. In actuality, there’s far less to fear here than you’re thinking. But that’s easy to know and harder to believe.

Does attempting to switch the dynamics put a little different coloring on a relationship? Sure. Does that mean you’ve done irrevocable damage the relationship? Often times, no it doesn’t. The trick is how you do it. If you just say, “hey, want to go out sometime and get dinner?” I doubt it’s going to shatter the foundations you’ve got with him or his friends. If you said “I think we were destined to be together and now is the time fate has deemed our paths to cross.” Okay, that, yeah, I’m not saying I’ve done that and it destroyed one of the most important relationships of my life. I’m not. I didn’t. Pinky swear. But that’s the kind of thing that tips the boat over when all you want to do is see if you can steer it in a different direction.

The best way is to take a deep breath, send him a text or get him for a private word the next time you see him, and ask if he’d want to hang out sometime. Be chill. Be yourself. Cute can be sexy. Cute can also be endearing and very attractive. Think of it as an asset, not a hindrance. Because it’s not! It only is if you treat it that way. You can also prepare and come up with an idea for where to go or what to do. You could also just simply throw the vague suggestion out there and let it develop as it may. But what you say is going to be less important than how you say it.

Treat it for what it is: a new possibility, not something that could make or break a friendship. Because it’s not that. It doesn’t become that until later.

There’s no shame in the shyness or your self-consciousness about your chest size, either. I’ve known a fair amount of well-endowed women who curse their chests rather than savor them. Back issues, constantly fighting for a guy’s eye contact when you dare wear anything low-cut and the soreness of being bumped into by things; I can’t imagine it’s worth it, especially if you’re not inclined to be the most outgoing personality in the first place. On the other hand, they can be a source of power! And a tremendous tool to build up confidence. For example, this boy, if he’s not blind, you need only approach him and you will have his attention until you leave. Like a dog. Because we share traits the canine species, like mouthing off at strange noises and chasing down men in uniform (well, some of us do).

Despite some lollygagging in this to put you at ease, the point is to relax and go for what you want, if you want it. You make a choice and that will lead to other choices. You can choose to let the fear of rejection rule you or you can choose to overcome it. You’re at the point where you are self-aware enough to do that. He’s not the first guy you’ve liked and he probably won’t be the last. So no matter what happens, keep things in perspective. That’s the most essential element when assessing risk and rewards to actions we weigh taking: perspective. As far as this dude’s concerned, it sounds like you’ve got a lot more reward waiting for you with a lot less risk than you’re worried over.

And as far as your group of guy friends go, they don’t have to know sh*t unless one of you wants them to. And if they find out, depending on the bunch, the two of you going out might become an in-joke or they might just forget it happened five minutes later. Groups are fickle. You won’t be ostracized from the pack. And if there’s a little awkwardness, it’ll pass with enough time or else they’ll prove themselves to not be such loyal friends in the end. In which case, f*ck ‘em.

Unleash Hell,

The Dude

[Got a Dude itch you just can’t scratch? Sick of trying to come up with a not-totally-crazy-girl way to bring it up to your guy friends and get their take on things? Totally over over-analyzing the cryptic messages he leave on your Facebook Wall? We got your back, girlfriend. Send your question over to askthedude [at] collegecandy [dot] com. The Dude won’t sugarcoat it, beat around the bush, or any other weird cliche that means lie to you. Like a nice, juicy hot dog, he’ll be 100% real beef, 100% of the time. So bring. it. on.]

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