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Old 20th Jan 2013, 09:29 PM   #1
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Building a friendship

I have this guy friend/acquaintance at school that I occasionally talk to, but I really want to build a (stronger) friendship with this guy. Now before anyone asks, yes I have a crush on this guy. I donít mind being just friends with him but I want to build our friendship to the point where I can come out to him without him looking at me weird because I told him something personal. And hopefully then I can get him to reveal his sexuality to me (but that's not for now, first the friendship!)

The thing is, our interaction is somewhat limited. We see each other nearly every day (he follows almost the same classes as me), but we have our own circle of friends that we always hang out with during school so we donít talk much. I got lucky though because his friends occasionally skipped classes without him so then heíd come sit next to me and we got to talk a couple of times.

Now comes the real problem: Iím not sure if our friendship if is getting stronger (in my eyes it is but I donít know about him). Every time we talk itís about school stuff and most of our conversations have been really short. We both have exams now and he likes to work until the last minute like me, so after the exam is over, we get to see each other without our other friends. But then we end up talking about our exams till we get to my bus stop. Is this a bad thing? Can you have a friendship built on this kind of chatter? Iíd love to talk about other stuff but I just donít know what to say so we always end up talking about school stuff. I donít think he really minds though because sometimes he brings up previous exams that we had. Or maybe thatís because he also doesnít know what to talk about

Iím just afraid that he just sees me as an acquaintance or that he thinks Iím boring. And now that I get to see him more often, I want to get the most out of our time together so we can become (closer) friends and maybe talk more often during the rest of the year. Anyone have some tips for a socially awkward guy?
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Old 20th Jan 2013, 09:55 PM   #2
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Re: Building a friendship

Well, can you ask him some questions about stuff not related to the class? You know he's in some other "circle". Do you know what things he might do for fun that you're not familiar with? Do they play sports, or watch sports, or go play video games, or anything? If you know anything like that, you can simply ask questions about that stuff. "Do you actually play football, or do you just watch the games?" "What games do you like playing?"

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Old 21st Jan 2013, 11:03 AM   #3
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Re: Building a friendship

Like Lex said, you've got to break the "School Barrier". School relationships almost always start as being closed within school and it's topics. It's a defense thing, you talk about the one subject you know you both share, and sort of try to figure out if you share similar quirky interests, to avoid embarassing yourself. You've got to take the initiative and talk about some of your interests. This will illicit a response from him if he shares any. Once you've established that direct connection to each other (rather than through school), you'll quickly learn much about your shared interests. Once you've established a rapport, you can start suggesting things like "Wanna hang out this weekend?".

Remember, the key is to open up to him. It's a form of trust, to reveal personal interests, and when someone demonstrates trust in a person, that person will impulsively reciprocate that trust. It's how social bonding works.

As for your question, no, most good friendships are not formed on one aspect, especially something like work or school. Sure, you can be "friends", but barely so. To actually have a fully fledged relationship, you have to get to know the person for who they completely are, not just the work/school side of them. That means exploring their interests, spending time with them outside of school. Don't worry about how to hang out with him outside of school, that will come naturally once you've established shared interests.
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Old 21st Jan 2013, 07:43 PM   #4
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Re: Building a friendship

Thanks for the advice, both of you! Now I finally know what my next step is: to break down that school barrier! I think I'll start by asking him what music he likes. I know that he went to the same music festival as I did last summer but I never asked him exactly which bands he liked. So I'm pretty sure I can find a commonality there. I guess I'll go from there and see how things turn out. Thanks again guys! I would've been totally lost without you.
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