Putting yourself out there can be scary. Everyone knows what it’s like to be vulnerable and admit your feelings, and no one wants to say the wrong thing in response. Maybe the guy you’ve been seeing has been sending mixed signals, and you feel nervous asking him about his intentions.
You think you know how to ask a guy if he likes you over text, but you’ve never done it before, or maybe you really want to ask why he is pushing you away if he likes you. Either way, it can feel like decoding an ancient language when you’re trying to tell if he likes you through texting.
Communication is important, and relationships don’t progress unless both parties are open and honest about their feelings. So, when a guy finally does open up about his feelings, you want to honor that. Still, how can you respond to something he says if you aren’t prepared?
How To Respond Respectfully and Honestly
When the Feeling Isn’t Mutual
Maybe things have been fine with this guy, but you don’t feel the connection you’re looking for. Whatever the reason, this guy misread your signals and confessed his feelings when you weren’t feeling the same way.
Without burning bridges or being callous, here are a few phrases you can use or tweak to make it clear you don’t feel the same:
- “I really appreciate that and it’s so nice to hear, but I don’t feel the same way and I don’t think it’s fair to keep seeing each other when there’s a girl out there who will be excited to be with you.”
- “Thank you for being open with me–I want to be open with you, too. Since we last spoke, my feelings about us have changed and I don’t feel the same way. I think it’s best if we move on, and I wish you all the best.”
- “You’re really amazing, but I’m just not feeling that same connection. I want you to find the right person who can give you what I can’t.”
Make it clear you are not interested and it is not up for negotiation, as some guys will see rejection as a challenge to try and convince you otherwise. You know yourself best–it is always okay to do what you need to to be safe and exit the conversation.
When You’re Upgrading From Friendship
Maybe you have been in a long-time flirty friendship or have been genuinely close friends, and something recently changed. If you’re excited to try a new type of relationship with your friend, here are some ways to express that:
- “You know how much you mean to me. I’m so happy to hear you feel the same as me, and I want to take this to the next level.”
- “I’ve secretly been feeling the same way, I’m so glad you were brave and said something!”
- “This will really change everything between us, but I’d rather take the risk and know for sure. Let’s give it a go!”
- “I’m really happy to hear that, and I want to give it a try. I also really don’t want to lose you as a friend, because you do mean so much to me–so, let’s take things slow.”
When You Like Him, Too
Can you name a better feeling than mutual attraction and devotion? I can’t! This is one of the best outcomes you can hope for. Rather than jumping up and down, here are a few cool and collected phrases to keep you grounded in your excitement:
- “I’ve been feeling this way for a while, too. Thank you for being vulnerable and putting it out there first.”
- “I wasn’t sure if you felt the same at first, so that’s why I didn’t say anything. I would really like to give us a try. What did you have in mind?”
- “I’m so happy you said something–this is awesome to hear and I feel great. What do the next steps look like?”
Admitting you care for someone is an important step in a relationship. However, unless he explicitly says so, don’t assume he wants exclusivity. That’s why in the last category, you’ll notice I’ve recommended putting the ball back in his court and asking about his intentions–intentions and feelings are two different things.