1. “This is embarrassing, but when I was still a teenager, there was a girl I had a huge crush on. The whole ‘We’re best friends’ deal except she had a boyfriend. You know, like the plot of half of the romantic comedies out there. I was convinced we were destined to be together. Anyway, her boyfriend and her break up and for some reason… I thought it’d be a great idea to show up at her front door with flowers. You know, the way some idiot in the movies would. Anyway, she got really mad at me for basically trying to ‘swoop in’ and we didn’t talk for a few months. We’re still friends now, but man… that was… ill-advised.” —Mark, 28
2. “I once took a job at a summer camp as a counselor just to work with this girl I liked. The important thing to know is that I hate kids. She got mono and was basically out the entire summer and I had to watch kids for eight weeks. She came back the last week and I never had the nerve to talk to her.” —Anthony, 26
3. “I once spent the night talking with this amazing, gorgeous chick at a bar. We were really hitting it off. You know those nights when you just feel like everything you’re doing is on point? She mentioned a friend was coming by to meet her later, which I figured was no big deal. Turns out, it was an ex-girlfriend of mine, and things did not end well. Needless to say, I went home along that night and she never returned my texts.” —James, 27
4. “Once, I was on vacation and hanging out at a pool. I was like, 15. I saw some hot girl reading the Bible, and I’m pretty sure my opening line was, ‘Hey, are you reading the Bible?’ It turned out she was like 25 and talked to me about Jesus until I told her I had to leave. I still cringe thinking about it.” —Alex, 28
5. “I reached out to an old classmate over Facebook. I swear I didn’t even come on too strong or anything, just asked her out. She blocked me immediately.” —Chris, 27
6. “When I was in middle school I spent all my allowance money on a piece of jewelry to give to this girl. I figured it’d impress her. She laughed at me in front of her friends. I should’ve listened to my friends and used the money to buy Halo.” —Matt, 27
7. “Once, I asked a coworker out. Well, in hindsight, I thought I asked a coworker out… real casual, just like a drinks and tapas kind of deal at a place right by work after work. Things went well, nothing romantic or sexual, though, but we both had a good time. We went out again the next week, and again after that. Same thing, nothing sexual, and I guess I assumed she just wanted to take it slow. But I figured that the fourth time, I was going to go in for the kiss. We go out again, I go for the kiss, she rejects it and realizes what’s going on. Apparently, the whole time she thought we were just hanging out as friends. So basically, I thought I casually dated a coworker for a month before I actually got rejected. I transferred departments as soon as possible without making it look obvious. But to be fair, she was also very nice and didn’t tell anyone as far as I know. So there’s that.” —Patrick, 29
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This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.