If you’re trying to figure out how to stop liking someone and just be friends, because they have asked you to or because you know nothing more can happen then it can be a bit heartbreaking.
But, at least it means that you have lost hope and will not waste more energy and time wishing and waiting for something that will probably never come true.
So if you took such a decision and would like us to help you to stop liking someone romantically and only perceive them as a friend then read on:
How to stop liking someone romantically and only be friends?
1. Spend time apart first:
First, it’s important to spend time apart from the person you like. This will help you to get some perspective and realize that you don’t need to be in a relationship with them in order to be happy.
It’s a known fact: if you want to try and stop liking someone, the first step to take is usually to spend some time apart from them. The more time you spend around them, the harder it will be to switch off your feelings. So try and minimize your time together, at least until you feel like you can be friends again.
If you do spend time together, try and talk about random things and get to know them as a friend rather than a potential partner. We will get back to this point later so keep reading. In any case, it’s not going to be easy, but if you can spend some time apart until you transition and come to terms with your new role as a friend rather than anything else then it would be great. This way you will help see each other in a different light.
2. Find flaws and imperfections in that person:
Secondly, try to find fault in the person you like. This may sound like a bad idea if you plan on becoming their friend. However, it’s actually a good step to take just as long as you do it in moderation.
You don’t need to fully turn yourself off of that person and start despising them but you can just find enough flaws to not want to have anything to do with them romantically. This way, friendship will still be possible.
The bottom line here is that it can actually help you to see them as less desirable. But, of course, try to still perceive their human side.
3. Focus on other people in your life:
Another thing you could try is to focus on your own happiness, other people, their roles, and what they bring or add to your life. Spend time with other friends or relatives, to try to analyze your relationships with each and see what it takes to build beautiful friendships that are sterile of romantic feelings.
You can also try and pursue other hobbies, and remind yourself that you’re the top priority to yourself and that you don’t need someone else in order to be content. If you keep these things in mind, it will be much easier to stop liking someone or wanting to be with somebody that doesn’t view you in the same light you view them.
Eventually, as you keep yourself busy with other things and preoccupations; life will happen and you will get distracted and occupied by other matters. And, before you know it you would’ve turned the page and started a new life chapter. A chapter where that person is barely a friend or an acquaintance if anything.
4. Hang out in groups with that person, rather than alone:
If you’re trying to figure out how to stop liking someone and only be friends, there is one important thing to do. And that is trying to hang out in groups with that person rather than alone.
This is important to do at the start especially, as it will be hard to cope and be around them alone initially and until your romantic feelings for them, gradually start fading. Avoiding being with that person alone at first will also help take the pressure off of your one-on-one interactions and make your relationship feel more like a friendship later on.
5. Keep the relationship platonic and innocent:
If you want to stop liking that person or fantasizing about them you should make an active effort to keep the relationship platonic by avoiding any physical touch. This means no hugging, no hand-holding, and no flirting. Anything that will make your romantic feelings or romantic fascination with that person resurface is to be avoided.
So, don’t put yourself in any awkward or uncomfortable situations with the person while trying to become friends with them. This means that you should avoid intimate conversations, and opt for innocent outings or group activities; as suggested earlier.
Keep in mind that whenever you’re the only two people present in a room or small space, anything could happen. Even if it’s just your mind playing tricks on you and reminding you of your suppressed feelings for them. So avoid taking any chances that could make the relationship lose its platonic and innocent nature.
If you can do these things, then it’s likely that your feelings will fade and you’ll be able to transition into a purely platonic friendship. Then only, you can feel free to slowly start being comfortable again with being alone with that person.
6. Stay away from topics related to dating or to your love life:
One last thing to do is to avoid talking about topics that are romantic or sensual in nature. Instead, focus on common interests or other platonic topics. Talking about your dating life or their love life is a no-go, even if it’s done innocently and with no bad intentions.
That’s because such topics can easily lead to you overthinking things and getting more caught up in your feelings. You could even find yourself trying to make that person jealous, before you know it, or playing some other type of toxic psychological game. If the other person isn’t interested in you romantically then such efforts will only complicate things and possibly hurt you more.
So, make sure you stick to random innocent topics or even gossip but don’t go near anything loaded with feelings such as topics related to exes, dating, or crushes. If you’re not ready to be just friends yet, let them know and give yourself some time to work through your feelings. With a little effort, you can stop romanticizing them and transition from liking someone to being just friends.