Despite what people might tell you, men and women can be friends and there are multiple reasons to have a male best friend. But what is also possible is that there comes a point in your friendship when one person begins to grow romantic feelings for the other and that is something that can ruin a friendship or transform it into something bigger.
But whenever you start to think that your male friend might be catching feelings for you, you are never sure whether this is really the truth or if you are overreacting and imagining things, due to the fact that the two of you have always been quite close.
Although every friendship is different and we all have different relationships with the people around us, there are some universal signs which can help tell you if your friend likes you romantically but tries to hide it. Here are 13 of them.
1. He wants to be physically close to you
An obvious sign that your guy friend is into you is his body language and non-verbal signs he sends to you. If your guy friend feels any kind of physical attraction toward you, he will do whatever it takes just to get closer to you and that is something he can’t control and something he is probably unaware of.
I am not saying that this guy will try to touch you inappropriately or that he won’t respect your boundaries or will invade your personal space but he will definitely have an uncontrollable urge to make some kind of physical contact.
Whenever you are with a group of people, he will always sit or stand next to you just so he can be closer to you. Whenever he talks to you, he won’t miss the opportunity to touch you, even if that means just touching your hand or shoulder or rubbing your knee. Besides, he will always lean a little bit too close to you whenever he gets a chance.
When the two of you see each other, this guy will always kiss you on the cheek and will hold you in his hug for a little bit longer, showing you how glad he is to see you.
2. His eyes
They say that the eyes are the windows to the soul and that is definitely correct. If your good friend has deeper romantic feelings for you, he might be scared of how much he likes you and he will probably try to hide his emotions because he is too afraid of your reaction or because he simply doesn’t have the courage to talk to you about his feelings. But despite the fact that he doesn’t verbalize his emotions, his eyes will always tell you the truth.
There are two possible scenarios when it comes to eye contact with this man. One of the possibilities is that he will avoid looking you in the eye at all times. If this is the case, it is obvious that this guy is too afraid that you’ll see right through his feelings and that he is probably embarrassed by them.
On the other hand, it is also possible that he constantly tries to make prolonged eye contact. This means that he stares at you whenever you are not looking or that he looks you deep in the eyes whenever you look back at him. This shows that he is so in love with you that he simply can’t control his gaze.
Besides, another reason he looks at you is that he tries to read something from your eyes, because he tries to find out if you share his feelings.
3. He protects you
When a man loves a woman in any way, he will always have the urge to protect her and your male friends are no exception. But if this guy goes out of his way to show you his protective side, it is quite likely that he wants you to see him as more masculine.
Besides, he has a natural urge to protect you because of his romantic feelings for you. Therefore, he thinks it is his duty to protect you and your needs. No matter how strong and independent of a woman you actually are, if a guy is in love with you, he sees you as this vulnerable little girl who needs his help. He doesn’t think this way because he wants to undermine you.
Instead, he wants to be a bigger man in his own eyes by serving as your protector. Whenever someone hurts you, and especially if that someone is a guy who broke your heart, he is the first there to deal with him. Whenever you argue with someone else, this guy always takes your side and always defends you. On top of it all, he does all of this without you even asking him to.
4. Your needs are important to him
One thing that can help you see if a guy is emotionally attached to you is the way he behaves toward your needs. If your male friend is in love with you, he will rarely be selfish or self-centered. Instead, this guy will always take care of you and your needs and he will even prioritize them before his own.
This guy will make sure that you are always okay and that you are not missing anything. The best way to see this is through the little things: the way he cares about if you’ve gotten enough sleep, or if you are hungry or tired. It is normal for your friends to take care of you to a certain point but if your friend is in love with you, he will be different.
This guy will always go out of his way just to make you feel comfortable around him. He simply wants to please you but knows he can’t do it as your boyfriend, so he gives you these little tokens of affection to prove his love to you.
5. He listens to you
Men are known to be not so good at listening and paying attention to every little thing their better halves say. Most of them are like this when it comes to any type of relationships, including friendships and romantic relationships.
But one of the signs you’re your friend’s object of interest is the fact that he really listens to you. This guy is interested in everything you have to say, even if you are talking about clothes, make-up or some other girl problems, which most men are never interested in.
Although he is your friend and it probably means that he knows a lot about you, this guy wants to get to know you even better, so he could approach you better in a romantic sense.
But even if he doesn’t plan to act on his feelings, it is obvious that he finds you quite interesting and amusing, otherwise he wouldn’t be in love with you the way he is.
6. He initiates contact
It is normal for friends to keep in touch and to have different kinds of contact. But if you have a male friend who always initiates contact and communication, he definitely has a secret crush on you.
This guy sends you a good morning and goodnight text and he always asks how your day was. He keeps in touch about everything that goes on in your life and you can’t think when the last day was that you didn’t hear from him. It is obvious that he has the need to talk to you on a daily basis and that is rarely something friends do.
Another reason he does this is because he wants to become a part of your life, so you’d get used to him and possibly grow romantic feelings for him. Besides, whenever the two of you hang out, he is the one who initiates these get-togethers. Even if he doesn’t have a valid reason to call you or see you, he will find some excuse to do so.
If nothing else, this guy will call you just to see what you’ve been up to, because he obviously can’t control the urge to hear your voice.
7. He opens up to you
Most men don’t open up to just anyone and your male friends are no exception. Of course, if you and your guy friend are extremely close, he will occasionally mention some things which are bothering him or which are important to him but he will rarely go into any details and he will rarely open up his soul to you.
But if your friend loves you as a woman but also knows how great of a friend you are, it is certain that he thinks you are the perfect girl for him.
This guy will value your opinion and he will always ask for your advice and guidance. He won’t have trouble opening up to you completely and even to show you his vulnerable side and these are definite signs that you are special to him. Besides, he obviously wants to see where you stand on certain topics in life and he gladly discusses them with you.
This man wants to determine if the two of you are compatible enough before he does something about his feelings.
8. He is ambiguous about his love life
Despite the fact that your male friend is in love with you, this probably won’t prevent him from having an active love life. But the way he talks about it when you are around is something that can help you see his true feelings.
One of the possibilities is that he opens up to you about everything except for his love life. You’ve been friends with this guy for ages but somehow you don’t know anything about his love or sex life. You don’t know if he’s ever had a serious relationship and you have never met his girlfriend.
If this is the case with your friend, it is possible that he really has been single for all this time because his love for you is too deep and he simply can’t imagine himself with anyone besides you.
But what is even more likely is that he intentionally refuses to talk about his love life because he feels embarrassed and uncomfortable talking about it with the woman he loves.
Another possibility is that he talks about his sexual affairs and relationships in front of you on purpose. If he does this excessively, it is obvious that he wants to see your reaction. This guy hopes he’ll provoke you and hopes that you’ll show your jealous side.
He may think that you are not aware of your romantic feelings for him, so he wants you to realize that you love him, once you see you might lose him. Besides, whenever he talks about the girls he is seeing, he somehow finds a way to compare them with you, even indirectly.
He doesn’t say it straightforwardly but when he tells you the things that bother him about his girlfriends, those are always the things they don’t have but you do.
It is obvious that this guy is looking for you in every other woman and he is maybe even unaware of that.
9. He wants to know everything about your love life
Although it is possible that the friend who is in love with you doesn’t talk to you about his love life, the situation is completely different when it comes to you. One of the signs a friend likes you romantically is his huge interest in your love life.
Although it is quite normal for your friends to be interested in the people you are seeing, when it comes to your male friends, they will never be too interested in your love life in details, unless they see you as something more than a friend. Therefore, if your guy friend is in love with you, he will always want to know all the details of your dates and the guys you went on those dates with.
He sees you as his potential romantic partner, so he hopes that you’ll stay single as long as possible. But although it hurts him to hear about your love life, he feels like he simply has to know everything about it.
He thinks he’ll be in more control of things if he finds out about everything right from the start. Whenever you are seeing someone new, this guy tries to find out whatever he can about him on social media and indirectly criticizes him, telling you all about his flaws.
And whenever you break up with someone, he is there to comfort you but you see that he is secretly happy about it. It doesn’t mean he likes to see you suffer, though. On the contrary, he only wants you to be happy and he thinks he is the one who can make you happy.
This man always tells you that you deserve better, that you deserve someone to love you more than the guy you are currently seeing. But what he never tells you that he is actually referring to himself and his qualities when he is talking about this imaginary better guy that you deserve.
If your friend behaves like this, there is no doubt that he is deeply in love with you and he is obviously jealous. But he knows very well that he has no right to be jealous because he is not your boyfriend, so he tries to hide it but there are times when his jealousy is simply stronger than him and there is nothing he can do about it.
10. He remembers everything about you
Most men don’t remember the little things in life, no matter how much they care about the person those things relate to. And that is especially the case with your male friends. It doesn’t mean they don’t care about you if they happen to forget about your birthday or the name of your favorite band.
They simply don’t find these things as relevant as we do and don’t store them as carefully as we do.
But if one of your male friends is interested in you romantically, he will act way differently. You are obviously more than important to him, so he finds everything connected to you important.
He will remember every detail regarding you and he will know some things about you that even you don’t know yourself. This doesn’t mean he is a creep or a stalker, it just means that he pays very good attention to everything that has to do with you.
He made sure to remember some things you told him about just once or some stuff you just casually mentioned a long time ago. He will always be the first to wish you a happy birthday or to tell you that your favorite actor is starring in a new movie.
This guy will notice every slightest change in your appearance or behavior. He knows you to the core so he’ll always see when you are feeling down or whenever something is wrong, without you even telling him.
11. He helps you out
Among other things, friends are there to help us with different things in life. But this guy is an exception. He puts so much effort into helping you out with everything in your life that you’ve started seeing him as your partner.
This guy is there for all the things a boyfriend would usually do for you. If you need help moving out, if you need someone to do small chores around the house or you need something to be fixed, he is always there for you. And with time, you got used to having him around. If you have a flat tire or you just need a lift, he is the first person you call.
Although it is possible that he is just being friendly and polite, if your male friend goes out of his way to help you and to resolve every little inconvenience you might find yourself in, it is likely that he is in love with you.
He has the urge to help you whenever he has the chance and he also wants to present himself as a reliable man who you can always count on. If this is the case with you and your male friend, just make sure not to take advantage of him and his kindness, because you might be giving him false hope and that is the last thing this guy deserves from you.
12. He is always there for you
Besides always helping you out in life, if your guy friend has romantic feelings for you, he will also provide you with comfort. This man will never be too busy to hear you out and to deal with your problems. He will never be happy if you are going through some troubles.
This guy is the first person you call whenever you are feeling down and he will never refuse to be your shoulder to cry on. He will be there to hold your hand through life and to give you some advice whenever you need it.
When you call him, he’ll leave everyone and everything he’s been doing behind just to be there for you. Of course, a real friend won’t be by your side just when everything is going great but also when things get rough and all of this can mean that he is just being a real friend.
But it is quite likely that this guy actually goes out of his way to be your rock in life, so you would see him as a strong man and as a reliable person who will never leave your side. He is your greatest support in life when it comes to everything and someone who pushes you forward on every occasion.
13. He doesn’t treat you like he does all of his other friends and everyone notices that
One of the most obvious signs a friend likes you romantically is the fact that he doesn’t treat you like he does all of his other friends. You two probably spend time with a large group of friends but somehow you know that you are special to him.
You are always the first one he calls, he always sits next to you and you feel like he is addressing you whenever he is talking to everybody. Whenever he makes a joke, he looks at you, waiting for you to laugh at it, as if he asks for your approval.
He values your opinion more than anyone else’s and he always pays extra attention to you. Although it could be that the two of you are best friends and closer to each other than to everyone else in the group, it is probable that this is just his excuse. This guy doesn’t know how to get closer to you and he probably doesn’t think he treats you differently but the fact is that everyone notices it.
Even his friends and yours joke about you two being a couple and treat you that way. If his friends do it, it is also possible that he’s been telling them about the way he feels about you, so they are just trying to see your reaction. Whenever this happens, he smiles and it is apparent that people seeing you two as a couple doesn’t bother him at all. In fact, it seems that he enjoys it very much and that makes his romantic feelings for you more than obvious.
I am an English Language and Literature teacher. I am a writer. I am a daughter, a sister, a friend… But most of all, I am a woman, just like you.
A woman who has experienced the same things you’ve been going through. A woman who’s been fighting battles similar to yours. A woman who wants you to learn from her mistakes and who wants to help you empower yourself.