Having crushes can be a wonderful, scary, fun, and heartbreaking experience. When you get your first crush, you're confused about what's happening. You've never had these feelings before. Over time, though, you'll realize that it is all a normal part of growing up.
The First Time
You see that guy you don't even know walking down the hallway at school and your heart skips a beat. You start to blush. You might want to just get out of there, fast. Or maybe there's a girl you've always been friends with, who is great fun to talk to and hang out with. Then one day she walks into chemistry class, and suddenly you're the one feeling the chemistry.
Young love or lust can happen anywhere, any time. One minute you're feeling normal and the next, someone catches your eye and your world is turned upside down. Your crush might be someone you know, or it could be someone you've never met. It may even be someone you'll never meet, like a hot actor in a movie or a gorgeous athlete.
The funny thing is you can't choose who you'll have feelings for, just as later in life you won't be able to pick who you fall in love with. You might find someday you're fixating on a person who you hated just a few days ago. Such is the world of wild emotions you've entered when you have your first crush!
All people react differently. Some people aren't afraid to tell another person they like them. Others don't even want to talk to the object of their affection. Some tease the person they like as a way to get attention. Many daydream about hanging out with that special person. You might find yourself thinking about her all the time, or mindlessly writing his name in the margins of your notebook.
Dealing with a Crush
Just as there are many ways to react to crushes, there are several options for dealing with your feelings.
• You can ignore your feelings and hope they go away. This can be difficult if your crush is someone you know, because it's hard to act natural when you're full of emotions.
• You can enjoy the fantasy. This is the best course when you're obsessing on someone like an actor or an athlete, because you'll never get to meet them. Share your feelings with your friends, and you can all enjoy daydreaming about what would happen if you ever got to meet the object of your affection.
• You can tell the person you have a crush on him or her. It's really difficult to admit to these kinds of feelings, especially with someone you don't know very well. There's great potential for disappointment. The person might make fun of you or laugh at you. Even if he or she lets you down easily, it can still give you that crushing feeling of heartbreak.
• A better course might be to try to befriend the person your heart is set on, if he or she isn't already your friend. Spend some time with the person in group activities like going to a football game. As you get to know each other better, you might find the time is right to confess your feelings.
If you work up the courage to tell your crush how you feel and he or she rejects you, it can seem devastating. It's a horrible feeling to know someone you like doesn't like you. It can be embarrassing to confess your feelings and then learn they aren't mutual. Know that while this feels horrible, it is only temporary. Before long you'll be happily obsessing over someone else. If you have difficulty moving past your feelings, talk to one of your parents or a trusted adult.
When Someone Has a Crush on You
Of course, crushes are a two-way street, and while you're suffering through having feelings for someone who barely knows you're alive, someone else might be feeling that way about you.
If someone confesses his or her feelings to you and you don't like them, try to be nice about it. If you've been rejected in the past, remember how bad that feels. Tell the person you are flattered but you don't feel the same way.
Remember, if anyone makes you feel uncomfortable or tries to make you do something you don't want to do, even if it's someone you like, tell a parent, teacher or other trusted adult.
And when you find the person you're obsessing over likes you, enjoy that time of being young and feeling crazy about another person who likes you too and maybe even dating that person. There's nothing like it.