Thought Catalog

Why I Pretend I Don’t Like You Like That

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I’m pretending that I don’t like you like that, and I bet you don’t even know. Why would you? I’ve put a lot of effort into this charade, and I’m pulling it off with such ease I’ve almost even convinced myself that I don’t like you like that. Sort of like that creepy thing people do when they’re sad and just smile anyway; eventually the smile becomes real, and the forced weirdness just fades away.

So listen, instead of telling you I like you like that, this is what I’m going to do. I’m going to tell you about some other guy I think is hot or who I’ve slept with recently. Maybe I want you to get jealous, but mostly I just want you to get the impression that I don’t like you like that. I’ll probably hit you in the arm when you say something funny, or brush against you as I’m getting a drink at the bar. Maybe I want you to like it, to think about what if I were naked, but mostly I just want to be close to you in the most inconspicuous way possible.

I’ll keep hanging out with you, so you will know I want to be friends, but sometimes when you text, I wont answer immediately, and sometimes I’ll have other plans that I won’t change to see you, because I want you to think that I don’t like you like that. Sometimes I think that if you do like me like that, I want you to feel the way I feel when I think you don’t like me like that — and when I think these things it makes me an awful person, and I wish I could be less vindictive about it. I pretend that I don’t like you like that because I don’t want you to have the satisfaction of knowing that I do.

Right now I’m wondering if you’re reading this and wondering if it’s you, because if you are then maybe you like me like that too, or maybe you just see right through me and my façade isn’t as perfectly curated for emotion as I thought it was. You know we have fun; I see how you laugh when I tell jokes. Sometimes it makes me think that you like me like that too, but it’s not hard to convince myself of my former opinion — that of course you don’t like me like that. So I’m going to keep pretending I don’t like you like that (maybe forever) because I’m terrified that you don’t like me like that in return.

What you don’t know is that sometimes I can sleep at night because I’m thinking about you. I’ll smile about something you said and concoct scenarios in which you’re madly in love with me and we’re vacationing in some exotic location, drinking out of coconuts. What you don’t know is that when other guys, great guys, make passes at me I reject them because I know it’s unfair to give them my kisses when really it’s you I’m picturing kissing me back. What you don’t know is that every time my phone lights up with a text from you, I feel as giddy as a school girl and I tell all my friends, even if it’s as simple a text as, “How you doing?”

And you’re never going to know any of this (do you think that’s poignant or pathetic?) because I can’t stand the thought of you rejecting me. I would prefer to watch you hand in hand with a thousand girls that aren’t me than to hear that we will never be together. I’m going to keep pretending that I don’t like you like that because as long as I am, I can pretend that maybe one day you will like me like that too. Because in this big city, sometimes I feel scared and alone, and while I’m pretending I don’t like you like that, I know for certain that you will always be there for me when I need you, and I’m scared that if you knew how I really felt, you wouldn’t be there for me at all. TC mark

image – Floor

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    • kitty

      this is my life in an article. your articles never cease to amaze me, kat. thank you yet again.

      • Lindsay

        You’re Kitty and she’s Kat….kitty kat! Awwwwww! 

    • http://somuchtocome.blogspot.com Aja

      You might get eaten alive for this one, but I liked it.  Loved it even.  Because liking somebody is scary.  You always run that risk of them not liking you back.  And that is painful.  

      • FromTheFuture

        Is it really that scary? Millions of people in your immediate social area and you’re worried about one person? Trust me there are plenty more plaid wearing, indie listening,black frame eyeglass owning, social media entrepreneurs where that one came from.

        • Cherry Dream

          I really found truth in this article so I liked it, and I also found truth in your comment. I like that as well. Lol

        • http://somuchtocome.blogspot.com Aja

          We can disagree on this. But yeah, I find having crushes to be scary because no one in the world (not even you) likes rejection.  And shame on you for assuming you know who I date and what I like.  Sweeping generalizations are so trendy right now. 

        • Anonymous

          It’s a blessing if the biggest worry in your life is liking someone.

        • http://somuchtocome.blogspot.com Aja

           It isn’t my biggest worry.  Where did I make that statement?  But thanks for the concern.

    • FromTheFuture

      “What you don’t know is that sometimes I can sleep at night because I’m thinking about you.”

      Poor guy.

      • Cody Ellis

        Should this read ” can’t ” ?

    • http://twitter.com/palespectre flipside of a memory

      “And you’re never going to know any of this (do you think that’s poignant
      or pathetic?) because I can’t stand the thought of you rejecting me.”

      Rejection is soul crushing, hence I will forever be pathetic.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=12452337 Emily F. Clouse

      i told him that i liked him like that because every time i see him, he gives me that look and pretends not to. and he said he didn’t like me like that. so i made him say, “we will not date” because i said that is enough for me to let ‘pretending not to like him like that’ congeal into ‘not liking him like that,’ because if he doesn’t like me like that then, like, screw that. i’d rather have him in my life as a friend who treats me like i’m the only person in a room/bar/party than not at all.

      but he tried to insert a “probably.”

    • Kate Davis

      This was nothing short of wonderful <3

    • LDN

      No joke, I opened a Word doc to write an article for TC entitled ‘why I won’t kiss you’, like 2 mins before I saw this. KAT! YOU’VE STOLEN THE WORDS FROM MY FINGERTIPS!

    • http://twitter.com/jkymarsh J. Ky Marsh

      Welp, it’s official, I can now identify a worthless Kat George article just from the title alone.

      • Dontmind

        And yet you still took the time to comment, asshole.

      • Dontmind

        And yet you still took the time to comment, asshole.

      • Okeydoke

        LOL I HAD THE SAME THOUGHT hi five 

      • guest

        troll.

    • http://twitter.com/jkymarsh J. Ky Marsh

      Welp, it’s official, I can now identify a worthless Kat George article just from the title alone.

    • Rishtopher

      “Because in this big city, sometimes I feel scared and alone, and while I’m pretending I don’t like you like that, I know for certain that you will always be there for me when I need you, and I’m scared that if you knew how I really felt, you wouldn’t be there for me at all.”

      This pretty much sums up the entire article. I think you can say a lot in a little and this sums up how I feel easily.

    • Rishtopher

      “Because in this big city, sometimes I feel scared and alone, and while I’m pretending I don’t like you like that, I know for certain that you will always be there for me when I need you, and I’m scared that if you knew how I really felt, you wouldn’t be there for me at all.”

      This pretty much sums up the entire article. I think you can say a lot in a little and this sums up how I feel easily.

    • http://summerslowrunner.wordpress.com/ Summer

      Relating to this so hard right now.

    • http://summerslowrunner.wordpress.com/ Summer

      Relating to this so hard right now.

    • Guest

      13 yr old suburban white girl problems

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=503568460 Carmella Kaya Osborne

        hardly

    • Jessica

      Really?

    • Jessica

      Really?

      • CORIFRAN

        yes really. It was actually perfect. 

    • CoriFran

      I told him, and he told me he didn’t like me in that way. I was MORTIFIED, but he refused to not, not be my friend anymore. I tried so hard not to be his friend, but he literally wouldn’t allow it. He was great about it, my heart broke because I thought I loved him. Well actually I did love him, and he loved me too. This was exactly 3 years ago and I am not going to lie, the first year hurt like hell, but eventually I realized that everything happens for a reason. He and I were only meant to be friends. I realized that we didn’t deserve one another, we deserved others. If he is really the friend you think he is, he will still be there. I say ‘Tell HIM’. It may be the greatest relief of all time. He will either feel the same, or he wont. Either way you can move forward in YOUR life. :D

    • Guest

      now someone write it from a dude’s point of view… im too busy at work.

      • Mage

        Couldn’t this easily be a dude’s point of view if you didn’t notice the author? You probably wouldn’t even have to change any pronouns.

        • MDN

          I am a dude and this is exactly what what goes through my head on an almost daily basis.

    • Af

      lol are you 16 years old? go listen to some more fall out boy.

      • Vira wang

        fall out boy hasn’t been relevant in a long time. I suggest a more contemporary band to use for such insult

    • w y

      That last paragraph really resonated with me. I recently articulated all of these things that you said in this piece to a previous partner who I was *just* hooking up with. We’re also best friends, and I couldn’t really understand what sleeping with my best friend meant. Was I secretly in love with him? I tried to convince myself otherwise. When I asked him if he could see us together in the future and he said no, I didn’t feel my heart shatter into a million pieces. Rather, I found it validating, and hearing it from him removed any sort of self doubt I had in my feelings for him. I’m amazed that telling him that I may possibly have romantic feelings for him didn’t push him away, but rather, brought us closer as friends.

    • Sophia

      The wordiness of this article is what made it so good. It’s just like the long and confusing thought sequences going through your head in this situation.
      Excellent work.

    • http://twitter.com/mung_beans Mung Beans

      stop being a fraidy-cat weirdo

    • http://twitter.com/tinakfine Tina Fine

      love everything you write, really nice.

    • Raechel

      your articles never fail to make my day.
      you seriously speak what I am going through..
      wonderful!

    • LS

      i’d say keep up the facade, eventually you’ll both be drunk and lonely and you’ll get what you want. given enough time and alcohol it’s almost mathematically fated to happen.

      • Guest

        surprisingly yes.

      • http://www.guidetomenhattan.com Rachel

        What I like to refer to as the “alcohol litmus test”…

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