Sorry, but if you're asking yourself this question, you probably already have your answer.
There's a big difference between fascination and attraction, but we often get the two confused. We crave affection and attention, so when someone gives it to us, we think we're in love ...
Don’t worry, we've all mistaken a fascination for a crush. And it’s not your fault either; it’s in our nature to want attention. Could it also possibly mean we need therapy and were neglected as children? Perhaps, but that’s a discussion for your therapist, not me.
So how do you determine if you like someone or the attention they’re giving you?
Ya know, I wish I knew; it would have saved me a lot of time and energy... and bodies... but that's beside the point. Through failed situationships and many peculiar crushes, I learned a lot about how to differentiate an actual legit crush from a fascination.
There are so many instances where you’ll mistakenly develop a crush on someone.
Let’s start with the big one:
It is painfully difficult to have casual sex while in constant contact with someone, hence, the dangers of FWB. We all like physical attention; so when you get it constantly from someone, your brain can trick you into mistaking pleasure for feelings.
I thought I was in love with my sister's guy best friend. Turns out he just had a huge… personality. So, my advice? Imagine going out on a date- dinner, a hike, roller skating, etc. If the date makes you want a second… you may have valid feelings. If not…
Stick to the bedroom.
But you also probably have-
-the flirty friend.
You flirt constantly and the sexual tension is immaculate, but nothing ever happens.
You have two options here. Do you picture:
a) having sex with them
b) having a life with them
If you can easily picture railing them in your Twin XL, you have a FWB.
But if you can’t picture a life with them
THEY ARE NOT WORTH YOUR TIME.
Maybe you have some feelings since you wouldn’t mind fucking the shit out of them, but if you can’t picture long-term, there’s really no point. You probably just like the attention.
Then, there’s the person who doesn’t give you attention.
Can you say, validation?
You don't like this person. You want their approval and they keep you around by giving you random spurts of attention.
It's a chase.
DON'T FALL FOR IT.
You deserve more than a ‘you’re beautiful' every month or so.
Since that's just my advice, I thought I would get some more opinions. I asked some college students how they determine if they like a person or only like the attention they get from that person.
Unexpected: the stories made me want a relationship. Almost.
“I realized I was really in for it when I started falling for her through text. I don’t get to see her in person often, but I’m still crazy about her. I realized this girl was different when I wasn’t able to see her, but I was still falling for her.”
I think that was the sweetest thing I have ever heard come out of a college boy's mouth. I didn't even know boys like that existed.
“If you can do things with them without doing anything, you like them. Like if you could just happily sit in one another's presence and do homework or be on your phones, you like them.”
Kinda like a best friend, where you go to their house just to sit on the couch watching TikToks for hours - It’s not about doing something fun with them, it’s just about being with them.
Am I guilty of falling for attention rather than a person? Yes. I think we all are, or otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading this. A lot of time and energy is put into people we don’t even like, and it’s sad.
So before you start stalking their snap maps, or asking your FWB, what are we?, take a hot minute and decide: