In today’s article we will discuss some clear signs a woman likes you but has a boyfriend and what you can do.
You might have a vibe with someone who, as it turns out, is in a relationship. They aren’t available, but you keep getting the sneaking suspicion that they’d be interested if they were.
It’s an interesting conundrum. On the one hand, this person is off-limits due to their relationship status. On the other, you suspect genuine interest and wonder what you’re supposed to do about it.
While no one can tell you what you should do, the following signs could indicate that she does like you — even if she already has a boyfriend.
These clues could at least put your mind at ease that you aren’t making it up. The signals are there, and you’re reading them right.
7 Signs She Likes You But Has a Boyfriend
The reality is that she’s probably trying to be subtle and not cross any lines. You might have captured her interest, but her heart might be spoken for already.
She might be trying to figure out her feelings, but you might be picking up on some of them in the meantime.
Why listen to me? I was a master’s level licensed therapist. I worked with couples and individuals and specialized in trauma recovery and relationships. I now write content about dating, love, self-improvement and psychology. My work has been featured on large publications such as Elite Daily, Your Tango, Positively Positive, Mamamia, and The Good Men Project.
1. She Flirts with You Often
First of all, some people are just flirtatious, and it doesn’t mean anything. They’ll flirt with anyone or anything because they just have that vivacious personality. If they don’t take it seriously, you shouldn’t either.
However, if they aren’t simply flirtatious or are much more flirtatious with you than others, you can count this as a sign that she likes you. She’s got a boyfriend, but you’re still getting flirty energy from her.
She might not cross any lines on a technicality, but you notice the interest is there.
2. She Sends Mixed Signals
It’s also possible that the woman who likes you but has a boyfriend already will send mixed signals. She’s always running hot and cold.
One moment, she’s intricately involved in your life and the next, you don’t even hear from her. She can be flirtatious and then shut you down cold.
Mixed signals might be happening because she’s sorting through her feelings. She has a boyfriend. There’s history and some sense of loyalty there.
But she likes you. It’s a tough position.
She might be trying to figure out how to downgrade her feelings for you to friendship to protect her relationship.
Or she might be thinking of risking her relationship to shoot her shot at being with you.
She might be considering how to have the best of both worlds without anyone getting hurt — and realizing that it’s unlikely she’ll be able to pull that one off if she continues this way.
3. She Breadcrumbs or Benches You
If she likes you but has a boyfriend, she’ll likely breadcrumb or bench you. In breadcrumbing, she’ll give you just enough attention to keep you interested in her while she continues with her relationship.
You’re being kept as the backup plan and sat out on the bench to wait your turn to play. This move is meant to keep you invested even while she explores her own interests.
Breadcrumbing and benching don’t respect your time or feelings. You’re expected to wait around while they figure things out, and you might be waiting a long time.
She might be waiting for Plan A to run its course, and you can’t be sure you’re Plan B. Someone else might already be holding that coveted spot.
4. She Jokes That She’d Date You if She Was Single
Someone who is joking that she’d date you if she was single is likely not joking at all. She’s just testing the waters to see how you react. In truth, she’s letting you know that she likes you but has a partner already.
This might make you feel good on one hand. After all, she’s confirming she likes you and sees you as a dateable person.
But it might also hurt to know that she doesn’t like you enough to leave the relationship she’s in to be with you.
5. She Shares Intimate Details of Her Relationship with You
If she shares a little more about her relationship than she should, it’s possible that she’s crossing some lines into emotional infidelity.
She might be bonding with you while discussing the private areas of her relationship. This is even more concerning when her partner isn’t aware that she’s sharing these private matters.
A friend might share these details, and it might not mean that she likes you as anything more than friend.
But if she’s oversharing about intimate details and meets the aforementioned criteria, it’s possible she’s into you and can’t help but spill the tea on her current romantic situation.
6. She Reaches Out to Discuss Relationship Problems with You
It’s not just that she tells you all about her relationship whether you want to know or not. She also reaches out to discuss her relationship problems with you.
This is certainly an issue of emotional cheating when she talks to you rather than her partner about their problems.
This could violate the trust in the relationship, but it also represents further proof that she likes you even though she’s in a relationship.
Keep in mind that friends will discuss their problems with you, and it doesn’t mean they have a crush on you. Alone, this might mean nothing more than the fact that you are a trusted friend.
However, if you couple this behavior with several of the others, it might make you wonder if they see you as a person who could be more than a friend someday.
7. She Still Follows You on Social Media
One of the main signs she probably likes you but has a boyfriend is that, even though she’s in a relationship, she actively follows you on social media.
She’s liking, commenting, and staying engaged nearly every day.
Unless she does this with all her friends all the time, it’s likely that she’s into you even though she does have a boyfriend.
Social media interactions could blur the lines.
She might not put anything out for public eyes to examine that wouldn’t pass her boyfriend’s inspection, but the frequency of her interactions could have you thinking there’s more to it than friendship.
What To Do About It
You might be feeling confused and want to know what you’re supposed to do when the person you like — and who likes you — is in a relationship with someone else.
Respect Relationship Boundaries
The first thing you can do is respect relationship boundaries. This person is in a relationship already.
You don’t have to like it, but you should respect that the person you like has a pre-existing relationship with feelings, history, and loyalty.
You might think you’d be a better partner, but if you truly like and respect this person, then you also need to respect her relationships.
Respecting her relationship means not doing anything to harm it. If you wouldn’t want someone flirting with your girlfriend, don’t flirt with someone else’s.
Make sure that you keep the relationship friendly and avoid crossing any lines that could be seen as inappropriate. Even though you suspect she likes you, it’s important that you still show respect for her relationship.
Set Boundaries of Your Own
You also need to set a few boundaries of your own. If you know that you like her but that she’s in a relationship, decide how to protect your own feelings, space, and energy.
You might have to be clear that you can’t spend as much time with her or need to keep more distance in order to maintain your own emotional experience with her.
Instead of being her backup plan, you can tell her that you don’t feel comfortable listening to her relationship problems and that it would be better if she talked to her partner about them.
You get to decide what works for you. If she can only be your friend right now, what should that look like? Be sure to clearly state your boundaries and then enforce them.
Love Yourself Enough to Leave
You might also want to love yourself enough to leave. She’s not available. You know you like her. You know she probably likes you, too. That doesn’t change her relationship status.
Part of loving yourself is doing the hard things that are good for you. You know it’s not healthy to hang around waiting for her to pick you. You don’t want to be the “pick me” type anyway.
Love Yourself Enough Not to Wait
You also need to love yourself enough not to wait around in hopes that this person is single and available for you. There’s no guarantee this will happen.
Unless she has disclosed that she is ending her relationship, you don’t know that she’ll be single any time soon. You might feel tempted to wait and hope, but your life can pass you by in the meantime.
You deserve a partner who sees you as more than a contingency plan.
If you don’t think she’s serious about leaving her partner, respect and love yourself enough to make yourself available to date other people.
You can grieve the relationship you hoped to have with her, but don’t miss out on the possibility of a great relationship with someone else because you’re hung up on someone who isn’t available.
The Fantasy vs. The Reality
The reality is that you might think she’d be an amazing girlfriend, but you don’t really know. All you do know is that she’s not single but is still showing interest in you.
This happens, and what I’m saying doesn’t come from a place of judgment. I’m simply pointing out that you might have a fantasy of the relationship that doesn’t match reality.
Be open to the fact that you might only ever be friends even if there’s some interest or chemistry mixed in.
Someone else might tell you to shoot your shot. There’s some wisdom in this. You might want to confess your feelings on the off-chance she doesn’t know how you feel.
It might make a difference. Just make sure you aren’t building a fantasy she can never live up to in real life.
In the end, you’re the one who has to decide where your personal integrity lies. You can choose to respect her relationship and downgrade your feelings to friendship.
You can choose to tell her how you feel in hopes that it changes things.
And you might want to walk away from her and keep the faith that if you’re meant to be, you’ll come together at a time when you’re both available.
It’s not an easy situation, but you have to trust yourself to do what feels right for you. Not what feels good. Not what feels easy. What’s right.
When you decide the course of action, know that you’re doing the best you can — and your best is always good enough.
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