She's Friendly Online, Cool in Reality

Visitor's Question from a 13-15 year old Male
I talk to this girl online all the time and yes, I like her but she doesn't know it. She's in my school too, but the weird thing is, we hardly ever speak at school. Online, we are always talking about things, even personal things, as if we were the best of friends! But when we're at school, it's almost like we don't know each other.

So how do I change this? Can I change this? Please help! Advice
This is a really common situation. It's easy to talk on line, you don't have other people watching you, you can say anything, it's easy to feel close. It's the same reason you are asking me for advice instead of say your family or teachers. It's easy when you're "anonymous" to say and do things that would be really hard in person.

So when you see her in person, suddenly you're a "real boy" with real arms and legs and it's scary to reveal herself to you. Plus now there is the whole audience of other people watching and listening which can be very intimidating.

So work on slowly becoming friends in real life, so that she gets used to the idea. Talk about something in the on line world - a book or movie or something. Then when you see her in person, continue that same conversation. Do NOT do this about something private!! You want her to feel fine and happy talking about the topic in the open. So make it something neutral like a movie or a song or something.

Also, talk to her in places that aren't crawling with other eyeballs. I bet part of why she likes on-line chat is that she doesn't have to worry about what others think. When she is in person she has to worry if people are listening in and what they think. So the more quiet a place you two can talk, the more it's like her "safe on line world".

-- from Jenn
One of Your Friendly Advisors at

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