Won­der­ing if friend has de­vel­oped a crush

The Hamilton Spectator - - GO - el­liead­vice.com DEAR EL­LIE

Q. I’m won­der­ing if my friend (a girl) and one of my close friends, has a crush on me.

We go to the same school and the same church.

I only knew her for two years, but one day she com­plained, ask­ing why I never say hello to her at school.

I said that I never no­ticed her (the real rea­son is that I don’t know how to talk to girls that well).

Af­ter that, when I did say ‘Hi’ to her, she was very happy.

A cou­ple of weeks later in the cafe­te­ria, she came up to me say­ing, “What do you think I should eat for break­fast — the muf­fin or the waf­fle?”

I told her to get the waf­fle, but didn’t know why she used that weird ex­cuse to talk.

On the last week of school, it seemed she wanted to talk to me when I was talk­ing to one of my friends (her locker neigh­bour), and she was teas­ing me how I thought the fi­nals were easy be­cause I’m so smart and all that.

Does she have a crush on me or is she just be­ing a good friend?

A. She likely does have a crush on you.

But it’s in­ter­est­ing that you al­ready con­sider her a “close” friend.

As a crush, you have trou­ble han­dling her sig­nals.

Her ques­tions seem “weird,” you get con­fused and shy.

Yet you both have your im­me­di­ate world in com­mon — school and church. Also, she thinks you’re smart, which is a high com­pli­ment.

How to han­dle all this? Be her good friend.

Text her ask­ing how her sum­mer’s go­ing, who she’s hang­ing out with, what she does dur­ing the day, etc.

By the time you both get back to school, or meet at church, you’ll find it a lot eas­ier to talk to her.

Reader’s com­men­tary:

“I find coun­selling is hit and miss. “I’ve been to coun­sel­lors over the years, some good. Some are sub­si­dized through a fam­ily ser­vices pro­gram so you pay at a slid­ing scale.

“Th­ese some­times pro­vide in­terns as coun­sel­lors. You con­fide in them, feel con­nected, then they must leave when their pro­gram is fin­ished. It’s very stress­ful.

“One coun­sel­lor just lis­tened to me with­out pro­vid­ing use­ful feed­back. An­other just talked about her/his own per­sonal ex­pe­ri­ences and didn’t lis­ten to me at all.

“With an­other, we had per­son­al­ity dif­fer­ences.

“It seems you some­times need to go through sev­eral dif­fer­ent coun­sel­lors to find a good fit.

“Most peo­ple aren’t aware of this. They give up.

“Some­times you don’t have the lux­ury to shop around — you can’t af­ford those that charge at least $100 an hour. But it lim­its your choices to the sub­si­dized ones with in­terns.

“Coun­selling seems a great so­lu­tion but it’s not al­ways the ideal.”

El­lie: Coun­selling does re­quire a “fit,” but not nec­es­sar­ily some­one who agrees with your for­mer ef­forts which haven’t re­solved your prob­lem.

Peo­ple switch doc­tors, den­tists, train­ers and hair­dressers who don’t suit them.

When shop­ping for a coun­sel­lor, ask ahead whether he/she uses a short or long-term ap­proach.

Also ask their main point of view (e.g. be­hav­iour, cog­ni­tive, hu­man­is­tic or holis­tic ther­apy) and get in­formed about it.

Those who let you hear your­self talk, are count­ing on you to rec­og­nize some­thing you haven’t ac­knowl­edged be­fore.

A good coun­sel­lor is a guide, and can teach new re­sponses to trig­gers while ex­plain­ing why past ef­forts failed. The rest is up to you. See my home page at www.el­liead­vice.com for how to “Find A Ther­a­pist.”

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