Why Am I Afraid of Guys Liking Me? Here’s What Specialists Say

NOV 28, 2022 AT 07:26 AM

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It is in every person’s nature to want to be liked and to feel loved. For women, they want to be appreciated. They make an effort to do things—sometimes unconsciously—just to get a guy’s attention. But once they learn that a guy likes them, they start to be defensive and fears start to rise, and may even reach a point where they start to lose interest. Why is that? Why am I afraid of guys liking me?

There could be a lot of reasons why we become afraid when a guy likes us. One obvious reason could be is if we don’t like the guy and we don’t want the guy to think that we are reciprocating those feelings; but what if we like the guy and we’re still afraid of them liking us back?

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Fear of love and intimacy

The fear of guys liking me could be rooted in the fear of love and intimacy. If we learn that a guy likes us, we start to associate it with love and intimacy that may lead to a relationship, and because of that, we’re afraid when a guy likes us.

Dr. Lisa Firestone, a writer and speaker about love and relationships, talked about the reasons why people are afraid to love. And one of the reasons she mentioned in her article was that love brings existential fears. A person tends to think that the more we have, the more we have to lose. The closer we get to another person, the more we are afraid to lose that person. Consequently, some people would rather be not in a relationship.

As for fear of intimacy, it doesn’t specifically mean sexual intimacy but emotional intimacy as well. Trusting someone of your feelings is difficult for you, this may be because of past relationships or experiences before where your trust was broken.

Getting to know our fears, love, and intimacy is important to overcome these, according to Dr. Lisa Firestone, this is an important step to having a long and lasting relationship with someone. By identifying these fears, we may know how to address them properly which may result in a fulfilling relationship.

We associate love with pain

Dr. Pat Love, a professor and certified love educator, said in an interview that “when you long for something, like love, it becomes associated with pain.” This is because when we think of opening ourselves to love or to new relationships, we cannot avoid thinking about our past experiences where we were hurt, experienced loss, and felt rejected or abandoned. This is why we avoid intimacy, love, or relationship, and may even fear the thought of someone liking us.

In addition, when you open yourself to love you are also opening yourself to feeling pain. Whoever said that “love without pain is not love at all” knows how honestly true this phrase is. To quote a famous writer, Irving Stone, from his book Lust for Life “There’s no love without pain.” When you’re in a relationship with someone, it is inevitable that you have misunderstandings, miscommunications, fights, and arguments. But this is growth, and emotional pains are growing pains.

Insecurities sweep in

You sometimes doubt yourself and your capabilities as to why a guy would like you. You start to ask insecure questions such as “Why me? What is there to like about me?”. And as insecurities rise, your confidence drops and you start to feel uncomfortable and may even be afraid of the idea of a guy liking you.

Insecurities are valid, but they could not help you in any relationship. Alysha Jeney, MA, LMFT, a licensed relationship therapist and relationship expert, said that our insecurities may stem from past relationships that caused us to break our trust which then makes us build a wall to keep people from getting in or we push them away from us.

She explained that because of these insecurities, you become afraid to let anyone in or become close to anyone. Jeney suggested that counseling could help you overcome these insecurities, but you could also practice mindfulness to make yourself more aware of why you feel these insecurities and how to cope with the situation.

Simply happy being single

Yes, as simple as it is, you’re just happy being single and still enjoying it. The idea of a guy liking me makes me want to distance myself from that guy, especially when I am the type who doesn’t want to confront a guy telling him I’m not into anything close to a relationship yet.

The worst case could be that the guy who likes you is a friend of yours, and confronting them would make your friendship awkward, this is why I’d rather not have a guy friend get attracted to me at all. Another worse case would be when some of your friends or family know that a guy is attracted to you and they pressure you to entertain the guy, just because you are single.

It’s like single people are pressured into dating or being in a relationship because this is what the dating culture is. But then again, you’re happy being single.

Bella DePaulo Ph.D., a psychologist, and author of various books about singlehood said that everyone who chose to be single—whom she calls singles at heart— enjoys solitude and loves having time to themselves. These singles at heart can prioritize their lives without ever having to think about their partners.

If you’re single by choice, don’t get pressured by friends or family members. Do not feed into the dating culture where you should be settling down—either getting married or living with a partner—at the age of 30s or 40s. If you’re happier being single, so be it. It’s your life and not theirs. Just enjoy life without pressure. And do not get pressured into dating just because a guy shows signs that he likes you.

So when a guy likes you, it’s all right to be afraid. But you could overcome this by taking a step back, looking at it from a different perspective, appreciating that a guy likes you, then identifying why you’re afraid. With that as a start, you’ll know how to overcome it and how to deal with the situation.