I'm going to try to make this short, but there's quite a bit of stuff to explain.

Background information:

Me: Male, 17, Junior

Her: Female, 17 (assumed), Junior


So, this girl moved from a nearby state to the city where I live in before the school year began, and when school seated, her assigned seating in physics for the semester was at my table group. I got a crush on her and asked her to homecoming (this is back in October), but she said she was going to be gone the day (visiting her old state) but she said it was sweet of me to ask. We had a conversation afterward about where she was from and the new place where we both reside, and that gave me some hope. However, she wasn't gone on the day of homecoming so I have my doubts (there's a chance she left after the school day ended). For about a week she basically went out of her way to avoid me, but it got back to normal after.

Then, in November, we were assigned the same group for a month long project and conversations were friendly from there. We eventually exchanged numbers in a group chat for the project (there was one other person in the group) and we ended up talking outside of the chat (but mostly about physics), and the conversations were very friendly. In the second semester, her seat changed so we aren't in the same groups anymore, but we text every once in a while to discuss physics homework and she is very friendly now with her texts and she says hi when we walk by each other in the hallway.

What I want to do is ask her out, but I feel like I'm dangerously close to the friendzone. I could probably just start a conversation with her during lunch, but it would be kind of annoying to her because I'm just interrupting her studying out of the blue with nothing to talk about. The final option I think I have is this: In my class, if you miss a lab, you have to stay after school with another student who already did the lab and do it then. I'm thinking I could just do that, but there's a chance we don't do the lab together.

tl;dr: She kind-of rejected me and we're on good terms at the moment, but there are complications for me asking her out.

Question(s)/Where I Want To Be:

How can I ask her out? Do I ease it into a conversation?

How I want the situation to be at the end: She knows I like her and I have either gone out with her or she has said no.

My expectation: We go out, but she wants to be friends (idk, this is just what happens most often with my friends and their relationships)

EDIT: The way that I approached her was by walking up to her after class in the hallways and just straight-up asking her. I'm asking how I can change this approach to be more successful and if I did it wrong.

UPDATE: She missed a lab and I helped her make it up after school and that went well, where do I go from here?

  • 4
    Hi and welcome to IPS! Please keep in mind that our site is about developing one's interpersonal skills, not dating advice. The logistics of going on a date are off-topic here so I've edited that out. As for the rest, I've closed for now as unclear since there's a lot of missing info about what interpersonal skills you are looking for help with - why can't you just ask her on a date in the same way as when you asked her to homecoming? What was unsuitable about that approach, and what even was that approach? You tell us about what's happened since, why does that mean you can't ask again?
    – Em C
    Mar 19, 2019 at 13:18
  • 1
    I might be missing it, but what are the mixed signals described by the title? Everything that's listed in the question seems to be normal social behavior (saying hi, discussing homework for a common class) or a rejection (a "no" on homecoming, and temporarily avoiding you after asking). What has she said/done that you think indicates romantic interest in you? I'm not asking to be pedantic, my advice would be different if you're going in "cold" versus if she's hinting she wants you to ask her out, etc.
    – Upper_Case
    Mar 19, 2019 at 15:26
  • @Upper_Case idk, she just seems to be more friendly than most people given the level of interaction we've had, sorry if I didn't make that clear
    – Jodast
    Mar 19, 2019 at 15:48
  • @EmC I changed it, is it still off-topic?
    – Jodast
    May 3, 2019 at 19:58
  • 1
    The edit doesn't really change the question.. you seem to be assuming that your approach the first time was bad because she declined, even though her stated reason had nothing to do with you (and in general, people decline dates for many reasons that aren't "you asked in the wrong way"). We also can't answer "did I do it wrong" because that's basically asking us to guess whether she was telling the full truth or not about why she said no.
    – Em C
    May 3, 2019 at 21:07

1 Answer 1


There’s a lot going into this but I’ll try to be succinct.

1. If you classify a “friend zone”, that’s where you will stay.

There are many reasons why people are attracted to each other. Some people have a natural magnetism or charisma that draws in others. Some have natural abilities. Etc. Figure out why a person would be attracted to you and then play on that strength. For example: She may be immediately attracted to an athletic soccer player but she can have just as strong (or stronger) attraction to someone who makes her FEEL safe. Feeling is not the same as reality. Physically an athletic person could make her feel safe but emotionally she could be very vulnerable. If you provide a safe space for her, she will begin to trust you.

2. Being a friend is never a bad thing.

Like I said above, if you recognize yourself as being in a friend zone, that’s where you will stay. Instead of seeing that as a bad thing, regardless of how you feel about her, your default should be to act and react as a friend. Being a friend is a good foundation for a relationship. Use that and show her that you want that first before anything else.

3. Be honest.

Honesty requires sacrifice and courage. At some point you will need to be straightforward with her. You determine the timing of that. (And yes, timing is very useful.) NEVER use technology as a mask for difficult conversations!!! If you are going to ask her out, do it in person. There are very few exceptions to this. Texting and calling are both valid ways of communicating, but use these to build friendship and rapport. If you need to have a serious conversation in ANY context, do so in person. Trust me, it’s hard, but the rewards are well worth it.

This applies to your parents as well. I don’t know what kind of parents you have. But if you trust them, confide in them. There are other ways to meet that having parents around won’t cause a fuss. Public transportation? Bikes? On foot? There are almost always other options if you really don’t want your parents around.

4. Side note.

You mentioned meals or movies for places to meet/dates. Historically, everyone does these things. Do something that allows her to feel safe and connected to you. Meals are great social times but can be over-used and awkward without connection to draw on. NEVER go to the movies. All you are doing is putting social interaction to a minimum. Personally, I am a social dancer. I do Swing, Blues, Salsa, Bachata, etc. You have a better connection with someone within an activity.( I am not talking about clubs which probably wouldn’t let you in anyway. If you want to go the social dance route, I can point you in the right direction.) Does she like working out? Running? Playing games? Church? Find a social setting that gives you a connection and then build on that. I know your social circle revolves around school, but school for you is work. Move your relationship (because friendship is still a relationship) from work to a social circle. This is called building social capital.

I hope this helps. I know it’s tough, but hang strong. There is no magic pill and it will take work. During this process, study yourself. There is always something to learn about yourself and others around you that will help you be more effective.

  • She's a soccer player, I do know that. Also my parents are the super strict kind
    – Jodast
    Mar 19, 2019 at 15:47

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