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10 ways to know that someone likes you but is hiding it
10 ways to know that someone likes you but is hiding it

Having a crush is equal parts exciting and nerve-wracking, but it’s made all the more complicated when you’re not sure how that person really feels about you.

Did they ask to be my lab partner as a way to get closer to me, or do they know I aced the bio exam? Are they asking questions about my weekend because they genuinely want to know what I’m into, or are they just making conversation? It’s easy to overanalyze any situation when you’re falling hard for someone, but luckily, there are many signs to look out for that indicate someone likes you, but is hiding it.

It’s normal to question why someone might conceal their feelings, and tbh, there are several reasons. The most common are fear and rejection, Dr. Sanam Hafeez, neurophysicist and Director of Comprehend the Mind in New York City, explains. “Perhaps they are afraid that if they reveal their feelings, you won’t feel the same way, and it could lead to rejection, which could be emotionally challenging for them,” she says.

If you two are besties and have a good friendship, they might be worried that confessing their feelings will make things weird or mess up your dynamic.

It’s also important to note that their cultural or social norms could play a factor, Dr. Hafeez adds. “Depending on the person’s background and upbringing, they may have been taught that expressing their feelings is inappropriate.”

Recognizing the signs that someone likes you — and understanding the possible reasons why they might be hiding it — can help you communicate with them better and eventually have an honest conversation about your feelings. Fingers crossed, it’ll lead to something more.

Here are 10 common signs that someone likes you but is hiding it

1. They may act a bit awkward around you

Who doesn’t get a bit tongue-tied around a crush? “Someone who secretly has feelings for you may act shy or awkward around you and be unsure how to act,” Dr. Hafeez says.

2. They compliment you often

This might seem like an obvious indicator that someone has feelings for you, but their compliments go beyond appearance. They make cute comments about your sense of humor, your confidence, or even small things like your neat, cursive-like handwriting. “People who have feelings for you will be gracious and appreciative towards you,” Dr. Hafeez says.

3. They get a little jealous

Jealousy is a normal feeling, as long as it doesn’t cross into red flag behavior. “If they comment when you mention someone else or get jealous about you hanging out with someone else, this is typically a sign they have feelings for you,” Dr. Hafeez explains.

4. They ask questions

Ok, so they’re probably not asking if you believe in love or what you look for in a partner, but they’re asking questions that help them get to know you better. They’re curious and want to know how your math test went or what your spring break plans are. “Someone with real feelings for you will consistently make an effort to know what’s happening in your life, including asking you how your day was, what you did, and how you feel,” Dr. Hafeez notes.

5. They remember the details

“They will always remember basic things like your favorite food or your birthday,” Dr. Hafeez says. Even if you just mentioned this information once or twice, they take note. Did you make an absentminded comment on Friday about watching that new Netflix movie over the weekend? They’ll probably ask you about it on Monday.

6. They want to spend time with you

Whether it’s choosing to partner up together for a school project, or asking to hit up Chipotle after school, this person is going to try and find ways to spend time with you. “They will be consistent when communicating and follow through on plans they made with you,” Dr. Hafeez says. It might not be as obvious as a date, but it’s quality time together that they initiate.

7. They listen

If you’re unsure if your crush is into you or only being nice, this sign is a big one. If someone is only making polite conversation, they might not remember that you love Daisy Jones and the Six or are worried about your driver’s test tomorrow. But someone who’s into you will always actively listen.

“If someone is genuinely interested in you, they will pay attention to what you say and show interest in your thoughts and opinions,” Dr. Hafeez explains.

8. They lean in when you talk

Body language is key. “If someone secretly likes you, they may tilt their head as you speak, which is a sign of engagement,” Dr. Hafeez shares. They’ll turn to you when you speak and will keep their body language open. “Their legs will be crossed in your direction and their arms won’t be folded with ‘closed’ body language,” she adds.

9. They make eye contact

You instantly feel more connected when making eye contact with someone. You know that they’re paying attention and listening, and not distracted by texts, notifications, or announcements over the school loudspeaker.

10. They can’t help but smile around you

They might also blush a little bit and laugh at your jokes. They even try to make you laugh and smile with a hilarious meme, funny TikTok, or inside joke just between the two of you.

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