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Flirtationship: A Guide For Friends Who Flirt

Are you really flirty with someone but neither of you makes a move to take it further? You might be in a flirtationship.

Whether it’s between friends, coworkers, classmates, or friends of friends, a flirtationship is a state of limbo between friend-zone and friends-with-benefits. And it can be a rather frustrating place to be.


What is a Flirtationship?

First things first, what is a “flirtationship”?

Well, it’s a combination of the words “flirtation” and “friendship.” So, it’s a flirty relationship between two people who are clearly attracted to each other.

However, for whatever reason, they can’t pursue it further (even though they both may hint that they want to).

Related: How To Attract A Man And Keep Him Interested

I was in a flirtationship once with a close friend. We’d “Netflix and Chill” meaning that we’d watch Netflix and cuddle on the couch as if we were boyfriend and girlfriend, but we weren’t having sex.

We would hug each other, lean on each other and hangout like this often.

We clearly had chemistry but neither of us felt that we should make the move to take it further.

5 Signs You’re in a Flirtationship

#5 — You Talk to Each Other All the Time

One of the main signs that you’re in a flirtationship is if you talk to the guy practically every day.

You might wish him “good morning” and “good night” — and even ask how his day has been at the end of it.

In fact, you probably speak to him as much as you would do if he was your boyfriend (or mother).

And it’s not just through texts and WhatsApp.

From liking each other’s Instagram photos to sending video Snapchats, social media plays a big part, too.

Essentially, there’s always constant communication from both sides — and both of you seem to like it.

Related: How To Tell If A Guy Likes You – Explained By A Dating Coach

#4 – You’re Very Touchy Feely

Sure, you find that you’re close with the other person in your flirtationship emotionally when you’re apart.

That said, you’re also very close physically when you’re together.

Not only will you be glued to each other’s side, but you might find that you hug a lot or hold hands. Or perhaps you’re constantly finding an excuse to touch each other, whether this is brushing legs or gently tapping arms.

Not sure if he likes you that way? Well, according to Better Help, if he’s romantically interested in you, there’ll be some clear signals in his body language:

  • He’ll have his body locked in on yours, angling his face, chest, and shoulders so that you’re directly in front of him
  • He’ll point both of his feet towards you, which shows that you’re the most important thing around him
  • He’ll lean in to hear you when you’re talking so he can close the gap between you, which shows physical attraction
  • He’ll smile a lot with his teeth, which shows just how happy he is to be around you
  • He’ll stare in your direction, which shows that you have his full attention
  • He’ll mirror your movements, whether it’s folding his arms to match yours or touching his face like you’re touching yours, as a way of trying to connect with you and build trust
  • He’ll adjust his appearance when you’re around, such as smoothing his hair back or straightening his shirt, so you only see the best version of him

Oh, and even though some of these signs can be subtle, they’re easy to spot if you’re actively looking for them.

Related: How To Flirt With A Guy – 10 Ways To Build Chemistry

#3 – Strangers Assume You’re Together

Another sign that you’re in a flirtationship is if people you come across all believe that you’re romantically involved.

Why? Well, judging by how you guys behave when you’re together, of course.

Whether this is the guy serving you at the bar or a friend of a friend who’s only just meeting you both for the first time, it’s quite common for you both to be asked if you’re a couple.

And it’s also common for these strangers to be genuinely shocked when you tell them otherwise. (I mean, who can blame them?)

Related: Signs A Man Is Attracted To You

#2 – Your Loved Ones Don’t Understand What’s Going On

Just like the strangers you meet, your friends and family might be super confused about your flirtationship.

They might not be able to understand why you aren’t an official couple — or at least dating.

Cue: a bunch of lectures that exceed the amount you got in your first year of college.

And you might have to spend a lot of time and energy trying to explain yourselves to your loved ones — even if you’re not exactly sure what to say.

Related: How To Tell A Man Is Attracted To You

#1 – You Don’t Kiss or Have Sex

The ultimate sign that you’re in a flirtationship is if you guys only ever hug or hold hands.

In fact, it’s likely that you’ve never crossed the line into romantic territory, which includes kissing and being sexually intimate.

And even you have crossed this line in the past, you don’t anymore — and it’s down to one of the following reasons.

Related: How To Get A Man To Chase You

5 Reasons Why You Might Be Stuck in a Flirtationship

#5 – One or Both of You Are Already in a Relationship

The most common reason why you might be stuck in a flirtationship? One or both of you already have a partner.

Therefore, if anything romantic happened with the flirtationship, it would effectively be classed as cheating.

And nobody wants to be labelled as a cheater, right?

Related: Signs Of Jealousy In A Man – Cute or Unhealthy?

#4 – One or Both of You Aren’t Ready for a Relationship

Perhaps one or both of you would prefer to be in a flirtationship due to not being ready for a relationship.

According to Psych Alive, this might be because:

  • Your defences are up — if you were raised by parents or caretakers who were negligent, you may grow up distrusting of affection
  • You tend to choose a less-than-ideal partner that’s emotionally unavailable — you may be used to acting on your defences based on your fears of intimacy
  • You have a fear of rejection — this is based on situations in the past where you have been hurt, abandoned, or let down
  • You have low self-esteem — this lack of confidence prevents you from going after the people you’re most drawn to.

Learn more about confidence here.

Either way, the mere mention of taking your flirtationship further might scare you (or him) off.

On the other hand, Insider claims that a person who is ready for a relationship will display the following signs:

  • You are willing to lower your defenses and get close to people
  • Your regimented checklist for the “ideal partner” no longer exists
  • You’re happy with who you are and where you are in life
  • You’ve learned how to communicate effectively
  • You know how to compromise
  • You are independent and know what you deserve
  • You’ve got over your ex
  • You’ve learned how to love yourself more than anyone else

As a result, this person will make a loving, caring, self-sufficient, equal partner. And isn’t this the best kind?

Related: How To Find Love By Taking Down Your Protective Wall

#3 – There’s an Ex Involved

Another reason why you guys may be stuck in a flirtationship is that there’s an ex on the scene.

Whether it’s yours or theirs, there seems to be unfinished business. And this makes the situation more complicated than it should be.

If we’re talking about your ex, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you in love with your ex?
  • Can you and your ex move forward?
  • Would you be able to leave your flirtationship in the past?

Usually, if you’re not already with your ex, this is a clear sign that the relationship wasn’t right.

And by hanging on to an old relationship, you might be ruining your chances of creating something incredible with the guy you’re in a flirtationship with. 

Think about it.

Related: 10 Signs Your Ex Will Eventually Come Back

#2 – Distance

Does your flirtationship partner live out of town? Or is he about to move across the state for a job?

Alternatively, are you the one who’s moving?

Either way, perhaps the current circumstances make getting into a relationship tricky — and this is putting one of you off.

If you’ve decided that you do want to progress your flirtationship, ask yourself:

  • How far apart will you be living from your partner?
  • How often would you be able to see each other?
  • Is it really possible to have a relationship?

Even if it seems unlikely that you can be together right now, you might be able to in the future. Don’t give up hope.

Related: 5 Dating Standards That Actually Matter

#1 – One or Both of You Are Afraid of Ruining What You Already Have

The main reason why people tend to stick in a flirtationship is that one of them is afraid.

Let me guess: you’ve got such a great relationship right now and you’re worried about ruining it? Or he’s the one that’s freaking out?

Sure, this is totally understandable, but you guys will never know unless you give it a try!

Related: 10 Traits of A High-Quality Man

How to Progress a Flirtationship

Assess Whether It’s Worth Risking Your Friendship Over

If you’ve had enough of being in a flirtationship and want to turn it into an actual relationship, proceed with caution.

Ask yourself if you’d be able to get the friendship back if things turned sour. And can you trust your partner not to break your heart?

Even though the safe route would be to stay in your flirtationship, I’m a firm believer in taking risks when it comes to love.

(Assuming that you’re both single, of course!)

After all, you don’t want to wake up at 90 years old and look back at your life with regrets.

In my opinion, an “oh well” is always better than a “what if?”.

Related: 15 Signs He Wants A Relationship and Not A Fling

Drop Hints About Dating

If you’ve decided to go for it with your flirtationship partner, the first thing you can do is drop hints about you guys dating.

I’m talking about:

  • Suggesting that you go and see a movie together (especially if it’s the next one in a sequel that you both like)
  • Asking him to try out a new restaurant with you
  • Inviting him to the park for a picnic on an especially sunny day
  • Other fun date ideas here.

(Either one or all three will do!)

Fundamentally, amp up the flirting, be even more touchy-feely than usual, and evoke confidence.

This way, you’d be pretty hard to say “no” to!

Related: 10 Fun Date Ideas He’ll Love

Tell Him That You Like Him

Would you rather be upfront with your crush as opposed to dropping hints about your feelings?

I hear you.

Generally speaking, this is the best way to move forward. I mean, oftentimes, guys can be a little oblivious and appreciate a direct approach.

In this case, abide by these golden rules:

  • Choose a moment when it’s just the two of you
  • Make sure you have time to talk 
  • Avoid speaking with him over text — being face-to-face is ideal
  • Be clear when you tell him you like him romantically
  • Be clear when you tell him how you’d like to proceed with your flirtationship, i.e. by going on a date

And make sure that you don’t rush him to respond. You may catch him off-guard.

Don’t be afraid of being rejected. I know that’s easy to say, but high-status women are not afraid to say what they want, and brush it off if the other person isn’t into it.

Learn more about high-status dating here.

Ask Him Out

Sure, telling him how you feel is the open and honest way of doing things.

However, you might want to try a different, more casual approach. You know, the one where you ask him on a date (directly) in the hope that he says “yes” — and it’s the beginning of your beautiful love story.

I’d suggest something like: “Would you like to go on a date with me sometime?”

This is to-the-point without being too pushy.

And you’ll know how he feels judging by whatever he says back.

Just an FYI — if he does turn you down, try not to be too disappointed (even though I realize that this will be difficult).

Look at it this way: at least you’ll never have any regrets, knowing that you went for it and tried your best to make it happen.

And this means that you’d finally be able to close the chapter on that romantic prospect, leaving you free to pursue a guy who does feel the same way about you.

Related: How To Be Confident Enough To Attract Your Soul Mate

Take It Slow

Have you revealed your feelings to your flirtationship partner and he reciprocated them? Or did you ask him out and he accepted the date?

Well, this is great news! Having said that, the hard part isn’t over.

Now that you’re escaping from murky flirtationship waters, it’s important to take the rest of the journey slowly.

Just because you guys know each other pretty well already as friends, doesn’t mean that you should just jump straight into a relationship. 

Take your time to introduce the romantic elements into your flirtationship (and enjoy them!).

One of the worst things you could do is have an amazing night together as soon as you’ve admitted to having feelings for each other.

How come, you ask? Well, in this case, your flirtationship might unintentionally cross over into friends-with-benefits.

And that’s not ultimately what you want.

Related: How To Make A Man Fall in Love – From Dating App to Marriage

Make Sure He Is High Quality

I hope you found this article helpful, but it does you no good if you’re not attracting High-Quality.

If you’re a confident and successful woman, you need a confident and successful man.

If you’re interested in learning what High-Quality men look for in a woman, check out my Free Guide on “How To Attract Higher-Quality Men” by Attracting Better Men.


A flirtationship is a flirty relationship between two people who are friend-zoned but not yet friends-with-benefits. 

And if you’re happy being in that place, fair enough. As you were.

However, if you’re not, that’s okay too. You can take slow but steady steps to happiness, whether this is with him as a partner — or without him.

Love, your favorite dating coach.


Lana Otoya

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