Telling someone you don’t like them romantically is not fun. And it doesn’t even have to be that you dislike them per se, but even saying you “don’t feel a romantic connection but still think they might be a cool friend” is a really strange boundary to set up when you’ve had maybe one or two dates with anyone. It’s like asking someone to define Yeezus having only heard the opening track. That’s just insane.
I have this theory that may be brilliant or really fucking obvious. It’s that we already know what we think of each other, but we don’t like not having the insurance of a lukewarm lover on the back burner. They’re always there, pretty eager and ALWAYS complimenting your hair. (Plus, it’s always fun to be liked.) But where do we draw the line between leading someone on and keeping them in your cell under “IDK, MAYBZ”?
Reasons lukewarm lovers are still in your cell phone, life
- It’s easy to get lonely. Even if the love is lukewarm, it’s something.
- Nothing better has come along. It sounds harsh, but you’d be lying to yourself if you say you have never been on a few too many dates with someone because at least it was something to do/entertaining. Of course it’s best to be honest to your lukewarm lover about your intentions. I really like hanging out with you but I’m not sure I see a future together is something I’ve totally said before, and it worked out fine. It feels awkward coming out of your mouth, but people respect honesty a lot more than you’d think. And it’s not like they’re gonna die cuz they can’t have you. People are stronger than you think, too.
- What if you need a quick date to a wedding/bar mitzvah/your ex’s engagement party. Of course it’s cool to fly solo, but sometimes that doesn’t feel good and you need someone there with you who’s not your gay BFF or your roommate.
- You have no idea what you want. Is there a deeper reason you still have this person in your life? Maybe it’s just a friendship you’d like to continue, or maybe there’s room for romantical shit. Don’t put too much pressure on defining it. Maybe what you need is to NOT define it at all and see where it goes, while still trying to be honest about your intentions. Leading people on sucks, but at least if you’re honest about your uncertainty, they can decide if they can deal with uncertainty or wanna GTFO. Options, yo.
- Ego. You want to think that a ton of lukewarm loves are TOTALLY fantasizing about your genitals and sick style, when they are probably not thinking about you at all, or thinking that you’re a huge turd. Nobody likes a turd. Don’t be a turd.
Basically, even though it sucks to talk about uncomfortable shit (hey, adulthood!), it’s best to be open and honest with your lukewarm lover. They can probs handle it, just don’t be a huge asshole because you’re not the first person they’ve ever liked and you won’t be the last. And even if they can’t handle your lukewarm definitions, remember it’s for the best. They’ll move on to find what they’re looking for and so will you. No need to waste your time AND another person’s. Stick to my life mantra which also applies to dating and you should be mostly okay: let’s try not to ruin anyone’s day here, and don’t be a fuckhead.