How To: Talk To Your College Crush

We all have one. You see him when he is deliciously sweaty (yes I just said that) at the gym, you walk by him frequently on your way to class and sometimes even brush his arm while both of you are reaching for your favorite greek yogurt flavor.

He is the quintessential college crush. We all have them;  most of us just make the awkward eye contact that will get us through the next four years of our career and the braver ones wait until they have nothing to lose to say Hi. Me, I took a different approach.

It was the end of Freshman year when I met him, we were placed in the same group for the interview process to be an Orientation Leader (this was before I became too cool for school spirit). I didn’t think anything of him, I was actually a little disappointed to be split up from a friend and felt as if I would have to talk to him for the rest of the day.

Turns out, I liked talking to him. As soon as we started, I saddled up next to him to be his partner. Enjoying our little quips, getting shivers when his arm brushed mine and every time we were separated it left me wanting more. I had yet to have my first real crush in college, and after having an awkwardly too long crush on a boy who didn’t return the feelings (mainly because we were both interested in the same gender), I was a little timid to jump into crushing again.

After a summer’s length of forgetting about him,  it was time to move back to school. And as fate would have it, we would soon meet up again..a lot in fact.

My new suitemate, and future best friend, had a boyfriend. And her boyfriend was best friends with my college crush -weird how these things happen. We ended up having a lot of classes together and turns out we were not only in the same chorus class, but also the same major classes. Which led to exchanging of phone numbers, staying after classes to talk, getting to class earlier to talk and working on projects until three in the morning. In my mind, he was as much in like with me as I was with him.

The first thing that made me stop and think this was true was the 21st birthday of one of my suitemates. He was invited but wasn’t sure if he was going to make it. Wanting him to come, I took things into my own hands by texting him at work hinting-ly reminding him that the party was tonight, then texting him when he was out of work to tell him all the fun he was missing out on.

He came over. He awkwardly sat by me, after I had been like, “Oh there is a seat, right here.” To be fair, moments earlier I had been questioned about how we knew each other, why I had his phone number and why he was texting me instead of his close friends that were surrounding me in the room…so I felt obligated to pull him to safety.

We continued playing Apples to Apples (an essential game to have on drunken party nights at college). Then the 21+ crowd left. And he stayed, sort of inviting himself at first…then indulging me and my friend in a raging game of Rock Band. It was a good night.

The next morning, I was regaled with how crazy it was that he stayed because “he doesn’t stay at a lame party for just anyone.” Before I continue, why do guys say things like that? I’d rather not be given hope, I’d rather you crush me now.

To make a long story short (kind of) there were more parties, one that was so bad I begged him not to show up…but he did anyway, on a Saturday night. And hung out with three of us, playing games, drinking the small amount of alcohol we had and somehow ending back at his suite – he even tucked my best friend and I in to bed (no funny business was tried). It was there that I realized we would not only be epic partners at Taboo but that I had a full-fledged crush.

It had unexpectedly swooped in on me, gripping hold of my brain and changing my mind from thinking he was just okay to wanting to be with him.

SO I did what any self-respecting person would do…I ran away to San Diego. I invited him to visit, he didn’t. Then I decided to abandon all hope, I sent him the most pathetic Facebook message saying I liked him a lot, and not just as a friend.  I spent a day stressing out about his response and why he hadn’t written back. Then while at work I saw the bright red “1″ next to my inbox. I was shaking so badly when I clicked on it, not ready for anything to come out of this crush.

He said he only was interested in me as a friend, and that he hoped we could continue slaying dragons together.

It hurt so much, I felt like the rug had been pulled out from underneath me, even though a part of me had always known all along. I sat on the floor of the bathroom at work and cried.  I cried because I was afraid that I had lost a really good friend by telling him something that didn’t matter that much.

The next day I cut off all my hair, because that is what I do when a guy steps out of my life. When I got back to Massachusett,s I had less than a month to brace myself before seeing him.  A lot had changed, I was now a full-fledged blonde ( a look I hope to never return to), the most tan I had ever been and had a whole new outlook on school/life/my future career (although that all went down the tubes when I discovered writing).

It was a week into school when I saw him, I was in the book store spending all of the money I had made over the summer when I caught a glimpse of him. Hoping he didn’t recognize me, I hid behind a book-case but alas, it was too late. He walked over and gave me one of his famous hugs, the ones I used to pretend to hate but now missed. We had idle chat, then parted ways.

I regret ever telling him because of how it affected our friendship, I miss just being able to hang out with him without wondering if he is thinking that I’m still crushing on him (which I’m not). I lost someone who got me and accepted my weird quirks the day I hit the send button. And although it was nice to be able to close that door, it shut another one as well…one that I wasn’t ready to close.

Step 1: Learn from my mistakes, if you have a close friend that you are crushing on, think about it first. Weigh your pros with your cons. I know you think that an answer, regardless of what it is, will set you free. But remember the other person has to deal with this new information, and hasn’t had as long as you to think about it… so give them time and space.

Step 2: If you decide that you are going to tell them/talk to them then do it with care. DO NOT, I repeat do not, tell them over Facebook/AIM/Google +/Twitter/a blog post (I think you get the idea). If you can’t do it in person then you probably shouldn’t.

Step 3: Be honest. Remember in grade school when your teacher used to scold you for telling tales and say “Honesty is the best policy!” Well he was right. If you can’t be honest about your feelings, or hold back, why would they want to be honest with you?

Make sure to keep in mind that this isn’t always going to end like it does in the movies. There won’t be a dramatic song playing in the background, the object of your affection will most likely NOT run into your arms kissing you telling you how they’ve waited for this to happen. There will most likely be an awkward pause, a lot of shoe glancing and it will end with him saying “so lets just be friends.”

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About the Author,

Over the past four years I've been collecting a few million how not to date stories, mostly from the hundreds of blind first dates I've gone on. My friends have even dubbed me the MVP of dating, and after you strike out as many times as I have you learn a thing or two (i.e. Never get extra onions on your burger during a first date if you want a romantic kiss.)