It might sound cliche, but friendships are a gift. In fact, according to a study, they’re incredible for your physical and mental health.
If you’re lucky enough, you might even land a best friend. One that listens to you, understands you, and shares similar interests.
Then life brings you turmoil, and you develop feelings for them.
You get lots of doubts and questions. Will it change our friendship? What will the relationship be like? Is it even worth pursuing?
In this article, we’ll answer all your questions and help you decide if it’s a good idea to date your best friend.
Is It OK to Be in a Relationship With Your Best Friend?
What happens when the sight of your best friend makes your heart skip a beat? Your initial reaction would be to question your feelings and yourself.
Is it ever OK to date your best friend? The easy answer is yes, of course! But, the answer isn’t that simple.
The easier part is that you both already know each other very well. You know their dating history and, we’re assuming, its secrets. Nothing is hidden from you.
In fact, research shows many people prefer getting into a relationship with their best friend instead of having a tumultuous encounter with a stranger.
But here’s where it gets complicated:
Are you dating for convenience?
If your romantic life is a bit rocky, your best friend will seem like the easiest option to start a relationship with. Your need for intimacy won’t be fair to them.
You have to make sure you’re not dating them because you’re desperate but genuinely want to.
Can you differentiate between friendship and romance?
There is a very thin line between liking someone and liking someone. Just because you have a very close relationship doesn’t necessarily mean you’re falling for them.
So before you start dating, make sure you aren’t confusing platonic feelings with romantic ones.
Get some couples counseling if you feel the line is too blurred for you. It’s known to be very effective for a blossoming relationship.
What Happens When You Date Your Best Friend?
Now that you’ve crossed that bridge, let’s get to the good part.
Dating your best friend will feel like magic. It’ll be a wholesome relationship with comfort, familiarity, and trust. Here’s what would happen.
Lots of Teasing
It will be a fun-filled relationship. Thanks to the closeness, best friends already share a teasing relationship. From inside jokes to harmless mocking, all will continue.
You will find that when your partner teases you about something, it will probably lead to more flirting and affectionate touches.
Easy to Plan Things
Wondering what to do won’t be difficult at all. Since you already know their likes and dislikes, you can quickly come up with things to do.
Chances are they’re your best friends because you share similar interests. That would work wonders to find things you both enjoy doing.
You can also surprise them with romantic dates they desire because you know them well.
Apart from the nerve-wracking initial date where you figure out the ropes of the new relationship, the rest of the dates will be very comfortable.
You can skip the awkward 20-question session and the embarrassing stories about their past (no more uncomfortable silence).
With all the good things comes a little challenge. Fights may occur as you transition into a couple.
Some of their romantic habits might seem new and take you by surprise. However, as time passes, you will realize it’s the same person you knew, just in a new light.
The Pros and Cons of Dating Your Best Friend
We understand if you’re feeling apprehensive regarding this new area of your life. Let’s narrow things down to the good and the bad this relationship will bring you.
4 Reasons to Date your Best Friend
While there are many reasons to choose your best friend as your romantic partner, here are the four reasons you should date them. Some are even backed by science.
1. Higher Relationship Satisfaction
Monmouth University Polling Institute found out that people whose partners are their best friends tend to achieve satisfaction in their relationships.
Such relationships increase their closeness to their partner and grant them more respect for each other. Like-minded interests, comfort, and care for each other make them more gratified in their relationship.
Moreover, companionate love takes more precedence over passionate love, which is usually a product of romantic relations.
2. Long-Term Relationship
This higher satisfaction, in turn, makes the relationship long-lasting. A study shows that many high school best friends turned sweethearts and were still together for 15 years.
Researchers asked 350 couples about the secret to their long-lasting relationship. The most common answer was that their partner is their best friend.
Physical attraction quickly fades with time; emotional appeal takes the number one spot to bless you with a lasting relationship.
3. More Sexual Gratification
At first, best friends turned lovers might find being intimate difficult. That’s not because of a lack of comfort but because these are new waters.
After hearing all about each other’s sexual encounters, doing it with each other will feel wild because you didn’t expect them to be your romantic partner.
However, did you know that dating your best friend leads to greater sexual gratification? The friendship translates to increased love for each other, resulting in being more sexually satisfied.
4. Similar Social Circle
Dating your best friend will also solve a big problem: who’s friends to hang out with. You have the same social circle so that you can enjoy gatherings together.
Meeting each other’s families and getting their approval wouldn’t be hard either. You should be familiar with them already.
4 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Fall in Love with Your Best Friend
1. Friendship At Risk
One of the most common doubts people have when they get romantically involved with their best friend is: “Will it work out?” If not, can the friendship sustain itself?
A New York-based Relationship Advice Forum states that if things don’t work out, chances are you can’t go back to being friends. He advises that you avoid getting into such a relationship if you’re not a risk-taker.
Similarly, if a sexual relationship with a friend ends, you can’t retain the closeness you had before it.
2. Too Much Familiarity
Yes, dating your best friend will be comfortable, but some might find the familiarity overbearing.
The spark of a new relationship might not be there, and comfort would vastly reduce the excitement.
April Massini, a relationship and etiquette expert, also states that your best friend has all your secrets. They know everything about you, which makes for a complicated start to the relationship.
3. Failed Expectations
As we mentioned above, dating your BFF will lead to frequent fights. That’s because you knew them differently when you were just best friends. When they become your lover, they might not be able to fulfill your expectations.
Being comfortable with each other will also reduce the effort to be more romantic, which will lead to disappointment.
4. New Secret Keeper
Lastly, every couple has secrets they don’t want their significant other to know. However, your best friend was your previous secret keeper, so now you’ll have to find someone new.
Some people might also need to find a new best friend to discuss things they can’t talk about with their partner.
How Do I Stop Having Feelings for My Best Friend?
Falling out of love will be a big battle, especially if you want to retain the friendship.
First, admit your feelings and allow yourself to grieve.
Many chemical reactions that happen inside your mind during a break-up significantly reduce your mental stability. Grieving is a healthy thing to allow yourself to get over the break-up.
Suppressing your feelings will only make things harder.
Next, you must accept that you have a platonic relationship with your best friend that won’t turn romantic.
Ultimately, you have to choose if your friendship means more to you than your feelings.
Once you feel more in control of your feelings, try to be more social and interact with others.
Talk to someone if you feel you’re unable to get over it. Open communication with your best friend can go a long way. Still, you can always reach out to another friend or a counselor if that isn’t possible.
Unlike popular belief, research claims it’s possible to stay friends and get over your feelings. It would require honesty that you’re not secretly hoping they’ll reciprocate your emotions later.
How to Date Your Best Friend Without Ruining the Friendship?
CNN shared a very interesting study some time ago. According to that study, 83% of adults consider their partner their best friend.
So it’s more common to date a friend than you think. We gathered some golden nuggets of wisdom you can use to make sure the friendship isn’t ruined as you date.
Respect the Secrets
Your best friend must’ve shared a lot of their secrets with you. Now that you’re dating them, be respectful of their past and private conversations.
Also, take a lesson from their experiences and don’t make the same mistakes as their ex.
Keep Romance Alive
Mutual attraction and friendship aren’t enough. Since you have a cozy relationship, extra effort is needed to keep the spark going. Plan romantic and exciting dates.
Involve Fewer Friends
It’s better to involve as few people as possible initially. Sharing a social circle will mean things can get out of hand if a private matter spreads.
You’re going to need some new boundaries now that you’re dating. Allow them space and treat them with the same courtesy you would any other romantic partner.
Best friends know each other well, but things will change when you transition to a relationship. Keep an open mind and avoid assuming things about them. It’s always better to ask.
Dating your best friend can be nerve-wracking and exhilarating at the same time. If you’re sure about your feelings, it will be easier to decide if dating them is a good idea.
Like all things, it will come with risks, but things will turn your way if you’re willing to put in some effort.
Just remember to respect them and preserve their friendship. Then, a beautiful relationship awaits you.