The trouble with liking someone, whether romantically or in a I-really-want-to-be-your-friend kind of way, goes two ways.
The first is how much the liking factor keeps you from seeing who they really are.
Because you find them rather amazing people (or people with potential for being such) it isn’t hard to build an idea of the kind of person they’d be. And you’d (subconsciously) do that because in figuring out what they could be like, you’d be able to figure out the kind of person they would like, then assess yourself whether you’re the kind of person they’d like or if they actually do like you. This form of behavior is very high school, but sometimes even adults fall prey to such silliness.
In a span of twenty-four hours, I watched two high schoolers, Jenna and Matty, get into a hardly definable relationship, which looks mostly based on infatuation. Throughout the whole season one of Awkward, I still don’t get what makes Jenna want Matty so much aside from his looks and her idea of what he could be. He’s charming (even if he smells his armpits when he’s nervous) and at times chivalrous (thanks for taking down the boob posters), but that’s really not much when it comes to knowing a person. There’s a wealth of unexplored layers to this boy, and maybe the mystery is what keeps Jenna wanting. Either case, maybe season two will reveal more on Matty’s life and character, and we could be in for a surprise?
It’s not wrong to like someone, just troublesome. Like a weather disturbance.Its normal to become excited, and absolutely normal to want to become closer to certain people, especially when you meet that rare, unicorn of a person who is as weird, funny, and conversationally compatible with you. (they watch some of your geeky shows, share an overlapping taste in pop/jazz/blues/instrumental/alternative/not-reggae music, read good stuff, well-exposed (or researched) in pop-culture/science/the world/the news (what does this person NOT know???) enough to make witty comments/comebacks/jokes, has good grammer, will joyously stuff their face with copious amounts of KFC chicken in a movie house and can delineate what counts as good food, and dresses decently–occasionally bordering on hipster, but that’s no deal-breaker, now is it?) To the romantically interested, they’re probably as good-looking as you are (because that’s how science works sometimes) and if you have the good fortune to sniff them out and find their natural scent pleasant, you can produce strong offspring! Who wouldn’t want to be good friends, or at least friends with that?
Trouble number one begins when we mistake them as the girl or boy or friend in our heads. The sentiment is captured by Sofia, Dash’s ex in Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares,
You see Dash, I was never the girl in your head. And you were never the boy in my head. I think we both knew that. It’s only when we try to make the girl or boy in our head real that the true trouble comes. I did that with Carlos, and it was a bad failure. Be careful what you’re doing, because no one is ever who you want them to be. And the less you really know them, the more likely you are to confuse them with the girl or boy in your head.
The truth is that, in friendship and in romantic love, people are never who you want them to be. This isn’t bad at all. This simply means is that we should give each other the space to be known in the ways we want to be known, without letting our own shit/fantasies or other people’s shit/fantasies impede a genuine getting-to-know-you. Entering any relationship with preconceived notions of the other person puts them in a box, tied with expectations that will only lead to disappointment. I once liked a guy until I realized that although this person hinted of wonderful things, I was seeing him as a certain kind of boy in my head when he was actually a much different person. I was blinded by his good looks, I’m only human after all.
Trouble number two begins when, upon feeling confident that you’ve pegged this person accurately enough to figure out what this person might be looking for, you slowly (and subconsciously) morph into your idea of what this person’s ideal person would be like i.e. the girl/boy in desired party’s head. Non-romantically, this is the part where kids try on different personalities and interests to fit into what they think a clique is looking for. Wouldn’t you hate to be liked for someone you really aren’t?
The best way to get into any kind of relationship (and stay in a relationship) is to approach it:
- With honesty and candor
- WIth an open mind
- Without trying too hard
- Without over-thinking
If the person doesn’t like you back or in the same way (or at all) it’s okay. The important thing is for you to come as you are, and give everyone else that same freedom. The best and strongest things of this world are those built on truth and unconditional acceptance.
You want the kind of honesty you find in a family, where the lines are often blurred between getting on each other’s nerves and having a good time. It’s where there can be quiet/normal without anyone getting panicky about the silence. You learn to laugh about misunderstandings, and you’ll always remember the time insert-(preferably embarrassing)-memory. There’s an abundance of meals, drinks, and inside jokes. You want friends who will come to your rescue when the tissue runs out in the toilet, or save your grade school pictures in their phones as material for leverage. Relationship-wise, you want a man/woman with whom don’t need to contrive to be anything to.
When it comes to guys I like like, I refrain from checking desirable person’s facebook account (and other forms of social media), or asking mutual friends what they’re like. My best friends have that covered. I think its better to interact with them personally and get to know them for yourself.
Secondly, don’t be anyone’s girl/boy/friend in their head. Let the person in your own head be the person who faces the world. If you hate you, then it’s high time to grow comfy with yourself. Having come from there, I’ve learned that you can’t underestimate humor, especially when it comes to living with yourself, then eventually loving who you are. Most people don’t have it all figured out, especially when it comes to that. But while we’re all passing through life, do find the guts to share the pleasure of your genuine self with others. Because the world would like to know the real you.