40 Secret Signs a Friend Likes You Romantically Even if They’re Hiding It

Wondering how to tell if a friend likes you? It’s actually more obvious than you think. Just look for the signs a friend likes you and work out what to do! 

Signs a Friend Likes You Romantically

The awkward thing about liking a friend is that you never want to admit it. There’s a lot more at stake if you tell them than if you admit your feelings to someone you randomly just met. You could lose an entire friendship and for that reason, you need to learn how to tell if a friend likes you. Sounds hard? Not really. There are many signs a friend likes you, it’s just that you’re not aware of them right now.

Of course, it’s also really scary simply because there is a possibility of them liking you back, or not. You’re friends already, after all.

That being said, sometimes it’s easier to sit back and figure out if your friend actually likes you before you can make a move. [Read: How to flirt back with a friend – 18 ways to tease them without being weird]

Some friendships can turn into the best relationships

Don’t they always say you should marry your best friend?

Sometimes the best relationships out there were built off a friendship, as they should be. However, sometimes you meet someone and just click with them on a much stronger level.

Others you form friendships with and slowly realize you totally like them more than a friend. It can be a pretty terrifying thing but if you know how to tell if your friend likes you, you can make a move and end up in the best relationship of your life. [Read: 20 signs you should be marrying your best friend]

Do you want a friend to like you romantically?

When you suspect a friend likes you romantically, it is probably because you like them or because you are afraid of how to reject them while still maintaining your friendship. So, you need to look for the signs a friend likes you to understand the real situation.

So while you are trying to find the signs, consider what you are going to do about it once you figure it out.

Are you going to make a move? Are you going to tell them how you feel? Should you ask them about it? Or are you going to let them down easy? [Read: How to seduce a friend subtly and find out if they’re into you as well]

We say, if you aren’t interested, sometimes it is better not to know. You can’t worry yourself about something that may not even exist. Focus on the friendship. That is your main priority with this friend. If something happens, later on, deal with it then.

But if you are interested, you probably won’t be able to stop worrying and thinking about the signs a friend likes you romantically because you want them to. In this case, look for the signs. They can lead to your first move. [Read: How to be friends with someone you love without losing your mind]

The hush-hush signs a friend likes you even if they’re hiding it

So, you’ve got a crush on a friend. Or perhaps you think they have a crush on you. Either way, you want to know for sure so you can take the next step.

But how do you find out without making a fool of yourself? Here’s how to tell if a friend likes you.

1. They make time for you

Sure, your platonic friends make time for you too, but a friend that likes you romantically will put more effort in. They offer to help you with things most friends wouldn’t.

Even if it is inconvenient for them, they will take the time to see you no matter what it involves. That’s how to tell if a friend likes you. [Read: How to deal with the sexual tension between friends]

2. They try to impress you

A friend who likes you romantically will want to impress you, whether with their jokes, talent, or the effort they put into your friendship. They may even dress up to style their hair differently when they are around you.

3. They are protective of you

Friends are already protective, but if you’re looking for signs a friend likes you, you’ll see that they are even more protective!

They will share their worry about who you date, how others treat you, and how you treat yourself.

4. They spend time alone with you

Friends often hang out in groups. We don’t need to tell you that. But, when a friend you usually see in a group wants to spend time with you alone, it may be because they like you romantically. It can be challenging to form a deeper connection or make a move when you’re around so many others.

5. They flirt

Flirting is a clear sign that a friend likes you romantically. Sure, some friends flirt after a few drinks or because they are attracted to you but not interested. You should be able to see the difference.

A friend that likes you romantically will flirt with you regularly, not just at convenient times. [Read: Friendly vs flirty – 22 signs to tell the difference when someone sweet talks you]

6. They get close physically

A friend trying to hint at their feelings for you may touch you more often than usual.

Instead of just a hug, hello, or goodbye, they might touch your thigh, sit closer, or touch your arm while talking. Even these tiny signs can mean something much bigger. [Read: 16 sexual signs your friend wants to have sex with you]

7. They support you

Good friends support your choices and goals. A friend interested in you romantically will go out of their way. Not only will they congratulate you on a promotion, but they may throw a party for you or help you accomplish your goals however they can. That’s a strong sign when learning how to tell if a friend likes you.

8. They listen

And they show that they listen. They do more than just sit there and nod while you vent. You feel heard. They follow up on things you talk about and really pay attention.

9. They share more

Sure, friends share. There is a difference between that and sharing with someone you like romantically. They will open up to you because they trust you more and want you to trust them that same way.

10. They are invested in your love life

They want to know it all. Even if it hurts to know you are seeing someone, they want to know where you are. Their romantic feelings don’t go away because you may be taken at the moment.

They want the updates not to know when they can act on their feelings but because they need to know if you’re happy. [Read: 27 signs they like you as more than a friend and want to date you]

11. Other people notice the attention they give you

If you’re looking for signs a girl or a guy likes you, you should know that you are probably not the only one noticing this friend’s behavior.

Mutual friends will see how they look at you and how they treat you differently. They are not usually as subtle as they think they are and that’s how to tell if a friend likes you.

12. They avoid their phone around you

When you are with someone you like romantically, you don’t let other things distract you. They will mute their phone or ignore it when it rings around them because they want to make the most of that time.

13. You can feel their nerves

Not everyone is as in tune with this, but you will feel their nerves if you are. People who have romantic feelings for you give off a vibe. Their behavior, even subtly, shows those feelings. [Read: 20 unmistakable signs your friend is crushing on you]

14. They reach out more often

A friend that likes you romantically wants not only your attention but also wants to give you theirs. They will reach out more to make plans or just to text or send you a funny meme.

15. They want your family and friends to like them

This is one of the bigs signs a friend likes you. Whether they think something will happen between you in the future or not, they want the people you care about to like them.

16. They remember everything

When you like someone, you try not to let anything slip through the cracks. You pay attention. So when a friend likes you romantically, they will remember even small things you said in passing.

Perhaps you mentioned your granddad used to race cars. Most people might not remember that detail, but a friend that likes you romantically will. [Read: The 52 sweetest romantic gestures for everyday life]

17. They surprise you

You meet up, and they surprise you with your favorite Starbucks drink or your favorite treat from the bakery around the corner. They may even cheer you up on off days or come over unannounced, hoping you’re free. [Read: Naughty ways to get yourself out of the friend zone permanently]

18. They compliment you

Sure, friends compliment you but not the way a friend who likes you romantically will. They will be really genuine and caring about it. If they like your outfit or hair, they may even gently brush against it while telling you how amazing you look.

19. They don’t call you a friend

This is a weird one, but they won’t introduce you as a friend. They may say, close friend, best friend, or just say your name. It’s likely they won’t say that you are just friends because they don’t want to be. They hope you think of them as more, so they don’t want to instill the idea that that is all you are.

20. There is a spark

You feel something there. A major sign a friend likes you romantically is the spark. It is elusive and indescribable, but you feel it.

There is electricity between you two. You gravitate toward each other. It can be tension, passion, or just a will we won’t we vibe. [Read: 23 intense unspoken signs of mutual attraction between two people]

21. They talk to you about the future

If they ask you about moving, if you’d move for someone you’re dating, or even if you want kids, they may see if you are really compatible as more than friends.

They know they like you romantically, but they want to make sure it has a chance of working before they take a risk and ask you out.

22. They are sad if you go out with someone else

You’ll notice they are down if you have a date or even get hit on or asked out around them. They may try to hide it, but you can sense something is off with them.

They may have been about to make their move when someone else swooped in and took your attention.

When a friend likes you romantically, they are careful and try to hide it because they don’t want to ruin the friendship. They will take their time. [Read: How to recognize the signs of jealousy in someone and guide them out]

23. They talk about you to other people

Ever go to your friend’s house, and their mom tells you that she has heard so much about you? Sometimes, this is a good sign your friend likes you romantically.

If your mutual friends say that this particular friend always talks about you, or asks about you, when you aren’t around, they for sure like you as more than a friend. [Read: How to know if someone is thinking about you sexually]

24. They want to see if you’re jealous

Before risking everything and asking you out or telling you how they feel, a friend that likes you romantically will see if you like them back.

They don’t want to ask directly, but sometimes, they may talk about someone they like, or bring a date around just to see how you react.

25. They ask for dating advice

This is a very common sign that a friend likes you romantically. If they ask you for dating advice, they want to know what you like and how you see things, so they can use your advice to ask you out. [Read: How to ask a friend out without risking the friendship]

26. They let it slip

Of course, one of the most significant signs a friend likes you romantically is that they tell you. They may try to be subtle about it and want you to figure it out from clues and hints. Or they may just tell you. When someone likes you romantically, it is hard to hold those feelings back.

Eventually, they will want you to know so they can get an answer either way.

27. They always text you first

Or call or suggest you two hang out. Whenever your friend is the first to initiate contact of any kind the majority of the time, they have more feelings for you than you do for them. This is because they just want to talk to you all the time and think about you a lot more often. [Read: 15 signs your guy friend is totally crushing on you]

28. They end up sitting by you in groups

You probably have the same friend group. When you’re with that group and they always end up at your side, it’s a definite sign your friend likes you.

29. They compliment you a lot more than they used to

And this can be on really anything, not just your looks. A friend who starts showing their admiration for your work ethic, talents, or personality is a friend who likes you a bit more than just a friend.

30. You talk about more in-depth stuff

A lot of friends don’t get too deep in their conversations. Sure, they’ll talk about important topics but not so much how they truly feel about them.

Your friend will definitely start bringing up controversial and in-depth topics just to get your opinion on it if they like you.

31. You appeal to each other on a personal level

This means your friend has started getting vulnerable with you. They’ll talk about their childhood and a lot of personal stuff around you. When this happens, they’re not only opening themselves up but they’re also trying to gauge your interest in them, too.

32. You sense they’re more nervous around you

This is a particularly obvious yet subtle sign your friend likes you, and is especially noticeable when you’re just hanging out alone. Once you get there, your friend will act a little more shy and nervous around you than they used to. That’s how to know if your friend likes you big time.

33. Normal dinner outings feel a little more intimate

Sure, you used to go grab some food all the time. But if your dinner outings start feeling a lot more date-like, they’ve started liking you.

They might even offer to pay for your meal. That means they really like you. It might even be their way of making a move. [Read: Is it a date or are you just hanging out?]

34. They seem annoyed when you talk about people you like

If you went out with other friends recently and got flirty with someone else and start telling your friend about it and they get annoyed, they like you. And they’re jealous. They don’t want to hear about someone else getting flirty with you.

35. They start getting chivalrous

Chivalry is most certainly not dead. At all. And your friend starting to open doors for you and act all couple-y with you, it means they definitely like you. It’s not hard to tell when this behavior starts and it’s a fairly obvious sign they’re trying to show you how they feel.

36. They’re suddenly fascinated by your hobbies, when they never were before

This might not be as obvious of a way to know your friend likes you but it’ll still help. Have they started to take an interest in your hobbies?

Perhaps you’re a volleyball player and they never once went to a match before but now they’re there every single one. That’s how to know if your friend likes you. Their support is a big sign.

37. You catch them staring at you

If someone likes you, they think you’re hella good looking. That means they’ll be looking at you as much as they can.

However, they’re not perfect and they can’t look away as quickly as they might need to sometimes. So one of the obvious signs your friend likes you is that you’ll catch them staring at you a lot! [Read: 10 clearly noticeable signs of body language attraction]

38. They act giggly and goofy around you

You know exactly how this feels. Remember when you started seeing someone new and that giggly feeling just takes over? This will happen to your friend too and it’s a great way to figure out if they like you more than a friend.

39. They start touching you more

Physical contact usually isn’t something you do in excess with just a friend. You’ll start to notice a lot more “accidental” touches when your friend starts to like you. Make sure to pay attention to how and where they touch you, too. [Read: 36 types of physical touches and what each means]

40. They try to make you laugh more

They might just be a funny person but they also might be trying to make you laugh as much as they can. If you notice them making a lot more jokes and even trying to make you laugh specifically, they totally like you.

Now you know the answer, what should you do?

You have your answer on how to tell if a friend likes you now, or at least you have a much clearer idea of whether your friend is crushing on you or not. So, what should you do now?

That really depends on how sure you are and how you feel in return. If you like them back, perhaps you could start showing signs back to them and see if they pick up on them. Or, you could sit down and talk about it, but that does come with risks if you don’t read the situation quite right. [Read: 20 ways to get your friend to like you more and fall in love with you]

If you’re not keen on them in the same way, should you ignore it and hope it goes away or talk to them about the problem? You could try the first option for a while and if it doesn’t work and they become more persistent, gently tell them that your friendship is far too important to you to risk. 

It’s never an easy situation, but these signs should help you figure out the truth. 

 [Read: How to subtly ask a friend if they like you without embarrassing yourself]

If you are looking for signs a friend likes you romantically, this is all you need. So now you need to ask yourself why you’re so curious, could there be a chance that you like them back as well? Now that you know how to tell if a friend likes you, you can do something about it. And if not, set the record straight.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...