Should You Tell Him You Like Him?

Have you ever thought a guy you liked was interested in you, but at the same time you’ve felt super confused after your interactions with him? Yeah, me
too. I think it happens a lot, unfortunately. Here’s what one girl asked me recently:

I’m in so much emotional turmoil. I cry almost every day over whether he’s interested in me or not. I know it’s absolutely silly and I determine not to do it, but I can’t help how I feel. I don’t know if I should just end my turmoil by telling him how I feel and then let whatever happens happen. Is that acceptable or is that wrong to tell him I’m interested and let him accept or reject me? I’ve never believed in the woman pursuing the man, but he is okay with that. I just don’t know if this is an issue if I should tell him I am interested in him. Please help!

Here are a few questions I sent her in response. I pray they will also help you if and when you find yourself in a similar bind in the future:

  • What specifically leads you to believe this guy is interested in you?
  • Have you given your friendship enough time to develop naturally, or are you impatiently pushing for more (Prov. 19:2)? If this describes you, check out what these guys have to say in “Should a Guy Pursue a Girl Like a Dying Man Looking for Water in a Desert?
  • Have mature, wise adults in your life also noticed this guy’s special interest in you (Prov. 1:5)?
  • Are you aware of other girls who are confused by this guy’s interactions with them and who also wonder if he’s interested in them? If so, you may
    need to gently confront him about his unwise interactions with young women (Matt. 18:15).
  • If you put yourself out there and tell him you like him, how do you know your turmoil will end? What if he responds by telling you he’s not sure
    how he feels about you?
  • What do you think would be best for this guy at this point in his life? If he’s extremely busy, do you think he even has time for a committed
    relationship?
  • Can you trust God—and this guy—to open this conversation if and when it’s the right time (Ps. 25:3)?
  • Do you believe that if this guy is settled in both his feelings for you and in God’s blessing of your relationship that he will have the courage to
    tell you how he feels about you? If you’re not certain he has the guts to do this, is he really a man you could respect for life (Eph. 5:33)?
  • Imagine this guy doesn’t respond as you hope. Will telling him how you feel about him leave you feeling free and peaceful . . . or desperate and
    worthless?
  • What if, rather than pressing the issue with this guy, you changed your focus and began seeking and serving God wholeheartedly until He sends a guy who makes his intentions for you clear (1 Cor. 7:24)?

What do you think? Have you ever told a guy you liked him? How did things turn out? Do you think this girl should tell her crush that she likes him? Why or why not?

PS: For more on this topic, check out the post “Why Not Pursue Him?

About Author

Paula Marsteller

Paula no longer tries to catch guys' attention by swallowing live goldfish, arm wrestling, and jumping down flights of stairs. (She's married to a wonderful man now!) She spends her days caring for her son, Iren, and writing for Revive Our Hearts. She's the author of Confessions of a Boy-Crazy Girl: On Her Journey from Neediness to Freedom, and she and her family live in New York.

HEY, GIRLS! We love hearing from you, but feel limited in the ways we can help. For one thing, we’re not trained counselors. If you’re seeking counsel, we encourage you to talk to your pastor or a godly woman in your life as they’ll know more details and can provide you with ongoing accountability and help. Also, the following comments do not necessarily reflect the views of Revive Our Hearts. We reserve the right to remove comments which might be unhelpful, unsuitable, or inappropriate. We may edit or remove your comment if it:

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  • Anonymous

    DON’T DO IT!!! You will have so much more peace in the relationship, if it goes forward, if he is the pursuer from the start. Trust me, I have learned this the very hard way. That is God’s design. If the man can’t make a move now, why would he lead in your relationship?

  • Hannah Gabrielle

    This post was perhaps one of the most direct answers to prayer I’ve had in a while.

    Three years ago, I met this incredible young man that had so many of the qualities I look for in a spouse, including a wise, godly heart. However, there didn’t seem to be much interest (beyond friendship) on his part, and I was content to leave it in God’s hands. A year ago, this young man reappeared in my life, and we began conversing over text and spending intermittent time together. As I grew to know him better, I appreciated him even more and sought God’s will as to how I should respond if he were to ask to date/court me. While I felt like God gave me the clear go-ahead, it’s been a year and my relationship with this young man is still in much the same state: undecided, sporadic, and confusing (at least, to me). He’s very busy with life at the moment, and I’m content to wait and take a relationship slow, but since he hasn’t voiced his feelings, I feel like I’m left hanging. Should I simply tell him how I feel and then give him the freedom to pursue or not pursue as he sees fit? Should I stay silent and simply trust the Lord quietly? At this point, I think the reassurance of knowing I’ve “spoken my peace” would outweigh any pain or disappointment of rejection; however, I don’t want to take control of the situation like Sarah or Rebekah in the Old Testament.

    Thus, last night I prayed and ask the Lord to please show me if I should tell him I liked him. Based on this article, which is a *clear* answer to that prayer, I sense that I need to be still and wait on God to move, but I’ll continue to pray and watch for His leading.

    Any further insight from any of you sweet ladies is also greatly appreciated! Thank you again for this article.

    • Praying for you now, Hannah!

      • Hannah Gabrielle

        Thank you so much, Paula! Your prayers are greatly appreciated.

  • Tessa

    You wrote, “I know it’s absolutely silly and I determine not to do it, but I can’t help how I feel.” You in your own strength may not be able to control your feelings, but Christ in you can. Surrender these feelings to the Lord and ask for His help. Write down a prayer telling God about your struggles with feelings about this young man, then tear it up into little pieces, letting them float down (maybe out a window) while you ask God to take away these strong feelings. This helped me tremendously at one point in my life.

    Just as in my own strength I can’t control my temper or my mood at “that time” and need God’s help to have right thoughts, emotions, and reactions, we need God’s help in dealing with emotional attachments to godly young men that we notice.

  • cryptical

    Sorry, but I definitely disagree with the counsel in this article. I think sometimes Christians have made such a doctrine out of men pursuing women (when it isn’t even spelled out in the Bible) that they over-spiritualize struggles like this young woman’s.

    She’s not pressuring, she’s not pursuing, she’s not trying to make something happen (though she hopes it does). She’s trying to end her own turmoil by getting an answer. Whether the guy likes her or not, she will get some kind of closure and be able to move on. If he does like her and they begin a relationship this way, the world will not end.

    One of my best friends agonized over a guy who didn’t speak up, and made the move to ask if he was interested. They are now married with two beautiful children. He was not going to say anything, because he is naturally shy and she was heading back to her home country. He didn’t want to disrupt her plans. Little did he know how happy she was to have them disrupted!

    I in the past agonized over a guy I liked, and finally confronted him. He told me that he was not interested. And guess what? Problem solved. Now I knew, and I could move on.

    I would definitely advise this young woman if it’s troubling her this much, to do the simple thing and engage in some human communication. It’s not disobeying some command of God, and the sky won’t fall. She will probably feel much better (even if it turns out he doesn’t like her).

    • You’re right, Cryptical, The sky won’t fall if she does tell him she likes him, and she won’t necessarily be disobeying God (though it’s possible she might not be trusting Him). That’s why I wrote this as a series of questions–because there’s no black and white rule. This is where I land based on the little I know of God’s design for male leadership in marriage, and based on the fact that this blog is for teens, but I’m not about to say that someone has sinned because they have told a guy they liked him.

      Thanks for commenting!

      • cryptical

        Sorry if I came across as too critical. I really apologize if so. I do agree on male leadership in marriage. I just don’t think a girl is usurping that by asking for clarification when she’s troubled by a situation like this. Another thought as well: if he isn’t interested, she’ll be able to get over him that much faster, and potentially be open to another great guy who is. Thanks for your comments as well.

  • Amanda Dearyan

    Well, recently I told a guy I liked him, because I was in the same place you are. I thought it would help but now realize that I should have been patient and waited for God’s timing. The guy did like me but I still wish I had let him take the lead. I’m such a go-getter sometimes it backfires.
    Im a strong girl and I need a strong guy. I need a guy who’s man enough to show me he cares but Also Godly enough to do things God’s way. I would say, like I’m trying to do now, wait on God’s timing or it won’t be the best it can be. Fortunately God is bigger than my mistakes:). But if you can avoid the pain do! But trust me, I hate when guys are confusing! But I try to put the blinders on and let Him work stuff out!! God bless!!

  • Sarah

    Over twelve years ago, I told a guy that I liked him. We just celebrated eight years of marriage, and it’s been great so far!! I don’t regret telling him I liked him one bit! Turns out he was just a little reserved, so he loved knowing how I felt and what I thought!

  • Ziyaah

    I tried telling a guy who I thought we had gotten close enough to bring up deeper discussions; in the end all I got was embarrassment beyond imagination. Branded as a guy chaser. My suggestion would be prayer and stronger friendships to have fresh eyes in this situation.

  • Linds

    Thank you for this article….the series of questions you present are helpful in examining such a scenario and coming to a God-honoring decision. I would be interested to hear your thoughts in addressing the question, “Should I tell him I DON’T like him?”. Currently dealing with a scenario where I serve alongside a guy at church who I’ve gotten to know and have come to the realization that I don’t think we should go beyond friendship. He has shown me exclusive attention before and still seems to be “flirting” but hasn’t been clear with motivations behind his attentions. Thanks!

    • Hmmm, great question, Linds. At the very least, do not flirt back or show him exclusive attention. If you want to do more, you could say, “I could be wrong, but sometimes it seems like you’re showing me extra attention. Am I imagining things?” That could lead into a conversation where you tell him you’re not interested in more than friendship.

      Praying for wisdom for you as you handle this situation. (I don’t think there’s necessarily a “right” or “wrong” way to handle this, as long as you speak the truth clearly but respectfully and kindly.)

  • Deena Maga

    So much good points, Paula, question how would you know if a guy really loves, you and wants to be with you. With out playing games and has intentions on marrying you one, day. How do you know like if he’s the one that God has sent for you. What to do or how to ask God for a husband like that. Someone who has right intentions with you from the beginning and will not end up hurting your feelings by not being honest with you, from the beginning “although” that person seems like they liked you.

    • Hey, Deena,

      They’ll tell you that they like you and want to pursue you with marriage in mind. Be patient as they get to know you and figure out if they want to make this big move. When it’s the right guy, he will. Trevor did for me, after years of “famine” from other guys.

      Praying for you now as you wait on God,

      paula

      • Deena Maga

        Thank you, so much I need that right now. I just need guidance and direction and discernment to know when things are of God and not.

      • Deena Maga

        Thanks, Paula really do appreciate it 🙂.

  • Kaitlyn Hulstein

    So I was actually in a similar situation recently. I was crushing hard for a guy for about a year; I play the same instrument as him in band but I wouldn’t consider hm my friend at all, he’s barely an acquaintance. But I liked him a lot. I told a friend I worked with, and he (Checking with me first) told the guy I liked him. I was totally ok with it because I was sick of that weighing on my shoulders and having to hide that and I’m someone who can get over something quickly if it’s talked about openly. So for the next couple months it was kind of awkward when I saw him honestly. Knowing he knew I liked him and not knowing how he felt about that made it hard. It doesn’t help that I’m naturally awkward though. I decided to confront him personally at the end of the year. I made it really casual and started by telling him something else I had to tell him before marching band started. Anyway, we talked and he said that knowing didn’t change anything for him in how he viewed me/didn’t make things awkward for him. That then helped me to not feel awkward. Since, I’ve been working on myself a lot and my relationship with God, and I don’t really feel that way about him at all anymore.

    • Cool, Kaitlyn! Thanks for sharing. So grateful you’re using this time to pursue God and cooperate with Him as He transforms you into the image of His beautiful Son. That’s awesome.

  • Danielle Theresa Battisti

    Now that I’m older I realize the old fashioned way of handling this is best. Men are the initiators… allow God to be God if you truly seek His will.

    • They really are, aren’t they, Danielle? I remember wondering about this guy friend who never pursued any of us girls around him. But then he found a girl in another state and pursued her boldly. There was nothing wrong with him; we just weren’t for him.

  • Chrissy

    Last year, I got to know a guy who is deeply rooted in God so I thought, this is “the man of my life”. The only problem was his self-effacement. He was the first one I told that I like him. Without any bad intention, I put some pressure on him which lead us to stop dating. Instead of that, we used time to ask God what to do and the answer was: There shall be no twinning.
    I´m so sorry for this guy and I don´t want to make the same mistake once again. If a guy can´t exercise to lead the relationship under God´s will, he won´t be able to fulfill his task as an husband.

  • Janelle

    I’ve told guys I liked them three times in my life. Each time ended in disaster! I learned the hard way. I will never pursue a guy again! Leave it in God’s hands. Trust Him and His timing!

  • Anonymous

    I love this post! So wise! Speaking from personal experience…wait on God’s timing! For several years I struggled with being deeply interested in a family friend. We had similar interests and enjoyed working together. I was confused about his intentions and begged God for clarity. In His time God made it clear that there was not mutual interest and honestly over time I realized he wasn’t even the kind of man I was asking God for. While the waiting was so hard I thank God for that time as I learned some important lessons about myself and God and developed a much deeper walk with Him. Most of all I learned He satisfies every longing far better than anything or anyone else! Just trust Him!

    • “Most of all I learned He satisfies every longing far better than anything or anyone else!” Amen, Anonymous!

  • maya anne

    What do you do if you have a “sort of crush” (non romantic, just overly attached kind of crush) on someone who is a TON older than you? Please don’t judge me for this cause its REALLY embarrassing to me, but I realized I am sort of attached to this person. They are an authority figure in my life and I need to know is it normal…? And what do i do about it cause I can’t avoid them?

    • Hey, Maya Anne, Is this authority figure married or single?

      • maya anne

        hes married … gosh this is so embarrassing to even mention X(

        • Thank you for being honest with me, Maya Anne. Yea, this attachment is definitely NOT okay. Is he a pastor? Youth pastor?

          • (PS: Proud of you for being open with me. Please don’t hear me judging you–I want to help!)

          • PPS: You’re also welcome to email me at Paula@PaulaWrites.com if that would make you feel more comfy sharing details.

          • maya anne

            Sent you an email:) hoping it sent since my tablet has been doing weird things lately. Thank you!!

          • Got it! Thanks so much, Maya Anne. Snowed under with work projects right now, so it might take me a little bit to respond, but I will. 🙂

          • maya anne

            Thank you sooooo much! I understand you are very busy so take your time! I hope you have a wonderful and productive day!

  • Grace

    Last week I met a guy who after knowing me for two days told me that he liked me. Suddenly the relationship went from us just being friends to an extremely awkward relationship because I knew his goal was to be more-than-friends. It made me realize that my crush could feel the same way towards me if I told him how I felt. So I’m going to focus on just being friends.

    • Yea, he played his cards pretty quick, didn’t he? Definitely think it’s important to build a solid friendship first. Thanks for sharing, Grace!

  • Valeria

    Paula, thank you for your post. Could you please pray for me? I’ve been carrying away a situation with a guy for several years… and I really don’t know what to do. It’s painfull for me not knowing if he feels something for me or if he simply sees me as a friend and wants to be in touch with me every once in a while. I was honest with him about my feelings years ago, and after years I’m still confused about his real intentions. I don’t want to confront him again and even though I pushed him away from my life to protect my heart, he always comes back! This never seems to end.. I pray for God’s guidance and patience but this past few weeks have been very diffucult because he talk to me again in a friendly way and I can’t help having hopes, expectations and feelings for him (like thinking about him all day), Again he is not clear and direct as I hope for a man to be…I do feel stuck and frustrated, Help!!
    I’m writing from Buenos Aires, Argentina

    • Dear Valeria,

      I think it would be fine for you to ask him to end contact with you for the sake of your heart. That would not be directly telling him (again) how you feel about him, but would give him the opportunity to tell you if he did indeed want to pursue you.

      My guess is that he doesn’t, though, based on the details you’ve shared. My encouragement to you would be to do what it takes to move on.

      Praying for you now,

      paula

      • Valeria

        Thank you Paula!

  • Flowers

    Does anyone have personal examples of telling a guy that you like him, either turning out good or bad? I keep reading comments that either say it went well for them or it didnt, but none of them really explain what happened. In trying to make a decision for myself, and it would really help if I could know why it worked out or why it didn’t. This has really been consuming my thoughts lately (i can’t believe I found this post because it came just in time), but I’m still left feeling kind of confused? Is this perhaps specific to the situation?

    • Juditha

      Perhaps the novel ‘in the field of grace’ by tessa afshar could help. It’s a novel based on the story of Ruth and has quite some words of wisdom about both situations like this and trusting God wholeheartedly.

      • Flowers

        Thank you, Juditha 🙂

    • Emily

      I told several guys i liked them, different guys, different times. None of the times i did it were they in the church/pursuing a relationship with God and, needless to say, they ended badly. The relationships were full of text flirting, subtle physical contact and resulted in a disconnect between me and God. I also didn’t have blessings from my parents and they were secret relationships. So while we were not physically impure, we were emotionally impure. All three times i was in relationships, they ended with my parents finding out (not a good way to go) and me having to apologize to the guy because I had been emotionally impure. Hope this helps.

      • Flowers

        Thank you, Emily. It definitely does help 🙂

    • I have. It’s just not a good idea. Basically the bottom line is: If a guy likes you super a lot, then he will tell you. If he doesn’t he won’t. You’ll really only embarrass yourself by telling him most of the time, unless you’re allowed to date and you can just casually ask him if he wants to go on a date.

  • Hope N. Tabing

    this post is a blessing. Thank God, He knew where to meet our needs.

  • Teresa Rincon

    My issue is, if you have a friendship with your crush and he’s not interested in you that way, then what? End the friendship?

  • Amaka

    I have been in a similar situation. i had known the guy for about 6 months, I liked him but I didn’t know if he was interested in me. it was really frustrating. Given that I had not felt that way since accepting Christ about 4years ago, I needed my peace of mind so I sent him a text message requesting that he defines the friendship cos I was confused and also not to have undue expectations of him. Then he replied and apologised for any way he has made me uncomfortable and said we are just friends. Then he stopped talking to me as usual.

    @

  • Maddi

    ok so there is this guy and it turned out he liked me. I asked him if he wanted to start dating he said just friends for now ok? with a winky face. Now this leaves me in wonder everyday if there is someone else. if there is someone better. if i would just be his 2nd choice

  • John

    No, don’t tell him you like him. Because that’s a lie. Women do not love men. They only have boyfriends because it makes the other girls jealous of them. It doesn’t even matter who the guy is. Please do us men a favor and leave us alone. There is nothing good a woman can bring to a man’s life.

  • Katlyn Lewis

    So I really like this guy that I have been friends with for a couple years now. Just this year I have started developing feelings for him, but I don’t know how he feels about me? My family absolutely loves him, and his parents always mention how much they love me. We went to formal and prom together. We also ended up deciding to go to the same college. I guess what I am wondering is, is it wrong to tell him that I like him, or should I wait for him to tell me he likes me?

  • Chel

    Hi, well. I have been reading/using this page for a year now. Is crazy how time passes; but this is the first time I dare to write something, or sign up. And I want to tell you something girls, people who are behind this page, behind this writings. You have helped a lot of people, me including and everytime I have a problem either it is about guy, problems with myself, relationships, my faith this has helped me so, so incredibly much and I can see how incredible are you girls and how God really cares about you, and how he uses your lifes to show, teach other people and how amazing He is. And, man imagine this: I am a christian girl from Paraguay. And this came to me.

    • Sarah, with Revive Our Hearts

      Beautiful, Chel; just beautiful!!! You are a Christian girl from Paraguay, and we are in fellowship with YOU! What a good, good Father we have! Thank you for your words of blessing for this ministry, Chel. We pray God will continue to speak truth into your life through these writers. It is a pleasure to read your post! God bless you, sweet girl from Paraguay! <3

  • Zulaa

    I’m so glad to find this site and reading all the articles really encourage me so much. May God continue to bless you, sisters (brothers)!! Just today I was having this struggle of being attracted to one of my church brothers. Again and again, its so easy to give into temptation of thinking of him, asking him how he’s doing and praying for him (which is actually more for myself). But again and again, because he’s still growing in Christ, because I’m still growing in Him, I’d be hurt by his words or actions. I’d feel disappointed or not good enough and that’s a dangerous thought to have. I’m repenting for the fact that I allowed my feelings to get the best of me, I allowed my thoughts to wander to someone else but Christ and let that someone became the center, I allowed my desire to control my actions rather than trusting and waiting on God. And because of these actions I’m hurt and it just aches a bit too much. But amazingly God still shows His all encompassing love to me, I know He won’t reject me and that He will heal me, He will discipline me and teach me to be pure in my thoughts and heart. Thank you from Mongolia. May we continue to act out Hebrew 10:24.