Friends to Lovers

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Trope · Genre
Related: Childhood Friends
See Also: Enemies to Lovers
Tropes · Slash Tropes · Tropes by Fandom
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Friends to Lovers is a common romantic trope, which involves two people in an established friendship becoming romantic partners. It is not uncommon for the relationship to be unexpected, that the characters never intended for there to be anything but friendship, but something happens to make them see the possibility of a romantic relationship. Stories using this trope may also involve UST and pining. In fanfiction many writers will take two characters who have a strong canon friendship and place them in a friends to lovers story, or longer stories may build a friendship between two characters, who are not canonically close, leading to eventual romance.

In the Fansplaining survey, Five Tropes Fanfic Readers Love (And One They Hate), Friends to Lovers was the most beloved trope among respondents. In contrast, Enemies to Lovers was Number 20 on the most beloved trope list.[1]

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Related Tropes

Childhood Friends

Enemies to Friends to Lovers

Although Enemies to Friends to Lovers and Enemies to Lovers can be thought as one and the same, that is not always the case. Sometimes two characters who are enemies, and have UST, pivot quickly into having a sexual (or romantic) relationship, skipping the step of developing a friendship first. For some fans this is satisfactory because they wish to see the pairing together, but for many the friendship component is crucial for them to accept and enjoy the pairing.

I mean I SAY I love the ‘Enemies to Lovers’ trope but what I really MEAN is that I love the

‘Enemies to Resentful Allies In A Time Of Crisis to Grudging Mutual Respect to Growing Fondness Concealed By Snark to Hurtful Betrayal to Slow Reconciliation With A Greater Understanding Of Each Other to Strange But Solid Friendship to Unexpected Feelings In A Time Of Crisis to Denying Their Feelings While Growing Closer As Friends to Epiphanies Of Love In The Worst Possible Circumstances to Mutual Pining to Unbearable Sexual Tension to Lovers’







  1. Fansplaining Article, OCTOBER 27, 2016.
  2. 27th May 2018 by enigmaticagentalice