What to do with unrequited love?

How to Deal with Unrequited Love

Contributor(s): Jessica January Behr, PsyD. Dr. Jessica January Behr is a licensed clinical psychologist and the founder and director of the Behr Psychology practice. She specializes in couples therapy and sex therapy. She also works with people suffering from anxiety, stress, relationship problems and depression. She received her BA in Psychology from Hunter College and her MA in Education with a concentration in School Psychology and PsyD in Clinical Psychology from Pace University.

Number of sources used in this article: 7. You will find a list of them at the bottom of the page.

Number of views of this article: 47 433.

Loving someone is the most beautiful thing that can happen to any of us. However, when the person we have feelings for does not reciprocate us, we feel deep heartache. Although unrequited love is painful, it can still be dealt with. To your condition does not worsen, learn how to react to the situation. Limit communication with this person. Take care of your emotional needs. Finally, take steps to help you move on with your life. Consider starting a new romantic relationship.

  • Allow yourself to experience the full range of emotions and feelings. Anger, humiliation, sadness – you can go through all of these if you love someone unrequited.
  • Feel sorry for yourself. Do not force yourself to get rid of these difficult feelings and experiences. Allow yourself to grieve for a few days.

  • Pay attention to the fact that if a person you like does not like you, do not ask him to do it. Such actions will not achieve anything. Your self-esteem will suffer a lot.
  • If a person agrees with you only because he wants to appease you, you won’t be able to build a healthy relationship.

  • Imagine that everything that happened to you happened to your friend. How would you explain to him why it happened to him? Perhaps the person who is not reciprocating to your friend is at a point in his life where he is not setting out to build a relationship. Alternatively, perhaps he likes other personality types. None of these reasons have anything to do with your importance and the value of your personality.

  • Think about it: telling a man that you don’t have feelings for him is very difficult. Also, if you are friends, it is likely that the person is worried about losing their friendship with you.
  • It takes a lot of courage to tell a person “no” if they are not someone you want to spend your life with. There can be many reasons why a person does not reciprocate your feelings. So accept his decision. This way you show that you are a mature person.

  • Pause and try not to date this person. Say, “I need to be alone. “. Don’t call, text or chat on social media.
  • If seeing someone’s updates on social media hurts you, unsubscribe from them. For example, on Facebook, you can unsubscribe from someone, so that person’s posts no longer appear in your news feed, but you’ll still be friends. You can always subscribe to updates again.

  • You’ll feel better if you realize that the person has flaws.
  • Make a list of that person’s negative qualities. For example, you may be annoyed by the way this person laughs or his or her unkind attitude toward some students who are not popular.

  • Your loved ones will find it easier to help you if you are specific about what you want. For example, you can ask a friend to go to the movies with you on your day off. You can ask your mother or sibling to help you clean up things that remind you of that person.
  • You can also ask your loved ones to name negative traits of that person.

  • Eat healthy, nutrient-rich foods, exercise, and rest. Reduce your stress levels. Engage in quiet, relaxing activities. Listen to music, draw or play with your pet.
  • Try writing a goodbye letter to the person. Imagine that you have broken up with this person because you realized they are not right for you. Focus on the negative traits of the person. This will allow you to move on.

Try a new hobby or activity. Join a new sports team or play sports in a sports club. This will allow you to take your mind off your heartache, get rid of your daily routine, and get a chance to connect with new people.

Find sources of entertainment. If you’re struggling with unrequited feelings, it’s not the best time to listen to songs or watch movies that will remind you of your loved one. Choose your books, movies and music very carefully. Instead of dwelling on your favorite sources of entertainment (or what reminds you of that person), look for more neutral options. [8] X Source of Information

Unrequited love – what’s a rejected person to do

Unrequited love happens in almost everyone’s life, putting them before a difficult choice. What to do if it has happened to you? Is it possible to avoid suffering or get rid of it quickly? How psychologists advise to cope with unrequited love, whether it makes sense to fight and whether we are able to take control of it? The answers are in the article below.

What is unrequited love

Already in the words “unrequited love” lies the definition of the phenomenon. Of course, we are talking about unrequited love. It depends on us how these feelings will affect the personality, self-esteem and further life. Of course, the ideal development of the situation is to “get over it” and move on, learning the necessary lessons from the incident that occurred. Unfortunately, there are other stories associated with unrequited love: a person begins to focus on feelings, deepening in them and dragging himself into a long depression.

First Actions

You have realized what happened: you are caught up in unrequited love. Of course, it is impossible to save yourself with universal advice on how to get out of this situation.

Take the advice, often rejected and rejected, but following it is inevitable, you will come to this anyway, no matter what paths. The first thing to do is to grieve. Yes, allow yourself to grieve! You’re hurting, and you can’t keep that pain inside, thereby nurturing it and storing it up inside. No, you have to let it out. Of course this doesn’t mean you have to spend years suffering and obsessing over the person who rejects you. Is that the fate you want for yourself? Apparently not. An evening (a week at the most) will be enough to vent all the negative emotions associated with unrequited love.

Note, your goal is to vent the negativity, not to bathe in it. Cry, watching videos and photos, share your feelings with a friend, mother, watch movies and clips of unrequited feelings. It will be painful and hard, but at some point (it will come sooner than you think) you will begin to notice that you seem to be cleansed and relieved of the heaviness. It’s natural and logical: you’re taking a load off your heart, it’s getting easier. Of course, it’s better to go through this stage at once. Don’t think that by chasing emotions inside, you will get rid of them. They just show up at the wrong time.


Often, faced with an unrequited love, and realizing that the feelings need to get rid of, lovers prefer to completely shut it out, noticing and ignoring. At some point it will work, but at first try not to forget what happened, and analyze it well. Follow the previous advice and do not live your worries, splash them out. In parallel, not only is not forbidden, but it is even recommended to think about the person for whom you are experiencing unrequited love. It’s not about presenting in your mind possible joint happy future. Do not fantasize, and reason sensibly: why has not worked, maybe it’s incompatibility? And from this follows the next point.

Debunk .

Look at the object of adoration soberly. Love is “intoxicating,” and that expression appeared for a reason. Ask your friends or relatives to tell you their thoughts on why your love proved to be unrequited. Usually people in love perceive negative information about the person they love negatively, but you try to assume that everything you’ve been told is true. If unrequited love happened to you not for the first time, then you probably know that after a while the events are seen very differently, and the memory always resurfaces of which you think: “I was just told that he was dishonest, and I did not listen. Let it be admitted that this time, too, the negative information about your loved one may well be true.

If no one speaks out about the person you care about (because they do not know him or do not want to talk about him), then surely you yourself can analyze the situation, and understand what his shortcomings are. This is what you should concentrate on – his negative traits. They are inherent in everyone. Does it seem to you that this man is an exception? Then perhaps you don’t know him very well yourself. Playwright Lope de Vega said: “If you’re too addicted to women, look for flaws in the charms. Immediately everything will become much easier.” Of course, this line applies to both sexes.

How not to become a victim of unrequited love

In order not to become a victim of unrequited love, one must clearly understand how this unhealthy feeling appears. It is not for nothing that such a condition is periodically compared to obsession, because when it comes to true love, there is an exchange of energies, but not a “one-way game”.

Looking for the reasons in childhood.

Sometimes people reject those who love and love those who avoid them? For many psychological problems (unrequited love falls into this category), experts often say that the causes should be sought in childhood. Try not to dismiss these words, and really remember how things were in those years. Many girls were in love with the leader of the class, and boys in the brightest classmate. Of course, these objects of admiration could not reciprocate for everyone. Some were left with feelings of unrequited love. Remember, did you fall into this category? Your sympathy didn’t lead to the desired outcome, and you had the experience of an “unclosed gestalt.

However, this story could have started not in school, but in the family. The parents of many, did not have enough time for the child. Maybe it was because of other children, or work, or some personal problem. The reasons are no longer important, because they will not change the fact that you felt rejected. To deserve attention, you had to dodge somehow, and this scheme has become entrenched in your mind. It became habitual for you to fight for the expression of other people’s feelings, and you carried this tendency into your adult life as well.

It may not be this particular person you fell in love with. With other experiences in your childhood years, probably at the first signs of unrequited or emotional coldness, you would have switched to someone else, but life attitudes dictate a different development. It no longer occurs to us that the person might not be “ours.” Rather, we think it’s us who didn’t try hard enough to attract him.

“Adult” reasons.

We have already learned that it is not uncommon to feel unrequited love from people who were neglected in their childhood years. However, sometimes the reasons that provoke the craving for “unavailable” are formed in adulthood.

Study the list of these causes, and if they make themselves felt, then begin to fight directly with them, and then your oppressive feeling of unrequited love is likely to disappear afterwards.

  • Low self-esteem, insecurity . People who are characterized by a tendency to devalue their own personality, subconsciously do not consider themselves worthy of the chosen one. When they find a couple, they usually feel that they do not correspond to their partner who seems smarter, prettier, more popular, more interesting or in general better. Underestimating themselves, such a person subconsciously accepts neglect and goes along with it, believing they deserve it. Women who fall into this category are often the victims of domestic tyrants.
  • “Victim” in life . Often such people are not aware of their position, but it is perfectly visible to those around them. Remember if you have been told a similar phrase: “Stop playing the victim”? So you do have a tendency, and it’s not surprising that you tend to sacrifice your life, dignity, time, and much more for the sake of unrequited love. Certainly, it is habitual and even comfortable for you to be a victim of circumstances, suffering from unrequited and unaffected by the course of things. Over time, such a position ceases to evoke pity. You need to get out of this kind of relationship, not feel sorry for yourself.
  • The need for strong emotions and feelings. Such people are also called “energy vampires,” and vampirism can manifest itself in different ways. Usually it is a strong need to be fed by negative emotions, experiences. Some are satisfied with the usual squabbles and quarrels, but for others it is not enough. Life without serious suffering seems impossible to them, and they easily plunge into these emotions – getting negativity out of life is much easier than striving for positivity.
  • Loneliness is a common reason for immersion in unrequited love. Experiencing loneliness, it is natural that we need human warmth. The object of love can become a completely random person who gave at least the slightest sign of attention – it becomes enough to think about him constantly and come to the conclusion that the heart settled in the true love. Single people have a lot of time for fantasies that lead to such consequences.
  • Financial, housing difficulties . It sounds down-to-earth and unromantic, but this topic can also be a trigger for unrequited feelings. Girls who can’t live separately from their oppressive parents or who have money troubles are more often subjected to this. They begin to think that the beloved would “save” them from trouble and help with their decision. An encounter with a little suitable person makes them see him or her as a potential savior and, accordingly, as love. It’s not even a question of cold calculation – a girl can really believe that she has fallen in love, fantasizing about how beautifully they would live together (as opposed to the present). Once you realize that it’s about the desire to get out of a predicament, concentrate on solving it.

What to do if you love, and you do not.

Many believe that unrequited love brings only negative experiences, leaving bitterness and tears. If you have done everything possible to attract the attention of his (chosen one), but in response do not get what he wants, try to distract from the object of sympathy, and realize that you can get benefits.

The benefits of unrequited love

Maybe at first this thought seems absurd and hackneyed, but you can actually benefit from what is happening. Many people know the popular saying that “if fate threw a sour lemon, then you have to make lemonade out of it.

If you have not achieved reciprocity, then think about the positive aspects of the state:

  • Learning resilience and willpower . Unrequited love is good for character building. We have to learn endurance and to take care even in the difficult conditions of rejection.
  • Learning to appreciate . Faced with unrequited love, we learn to appreciate any signs of attention from the person we love. Usually in the situation under discussion, the attention is not enough, it is especially valuable and is reproduced in memory more than once. Meeting mutual love in the future, we do not treat it as something natural – it becomes even more beautiful than it would have been before unrequited love.
  • We become more attractive. More often than not, this is what happens. Having failed to arouse the proper interest in the person we like, we try to change ourselves, and, as a rule, these changes happen for the better. Men usually become more interested in sports, and often turn a new hobby into a good habit. Women more often experiment with their appearance, begin to take better care of themselves, and the result does not have to wait.
  • Become More Resourceful . Having fallen in love unrequitedly, many people begin to think how to conquer the beloved (beloved), and these thoughts prompt extraordinary and memorable actions. It is possible that the object of adoration will not appreciate the effort, but in thinking about the various surprises we draw from various sources of interesting ideas, and in the future they will be useful.
  • Become more attentive . This phenomenon also has a logical explanation. Attention develops in several directions. Firstly, we begin to notice the desires and hobbies of the person to match them. Secondly, we become more attentive to his environment, trying to understand what people cause his interest.
  • We learn to be more proactive . Unrequited love often adds initiative and persistence in the character. If before we did not seek to show it, or just do not know how, in this situation, everything changes. Since uninterested in us person does not manifest itself, it has to do to us, simultaneously opening up in themselves previously unknown facets.
  • Let’s take care of other people’s feelings. Of course, after experiencing unrequited love, some begin to take revenge on others, breaking their hearts and forcing them to go through various levels of suffering. Most people, on the contrary, learn tolerance, kindness, and compassion. How does this manifest itself? Often, as we try to break through the wall of another’s indifference, we remember showing coldness to another’s expression of feelings. After realizing what that person was experiencing, we strive to apologize and show consideration – something we weren’t able to give before. And in the future we become more tolerant of other people’s displays of affection and do not allow ourselves callous disregard.

To summarize the above points: having experienced unrequited love, we learn many useful lessons and discover important facets, which would have remained in the shadows, if not for the collision with indifference. The palette of feelings becomes wider, and the imagination develops. We earn important experience in overcoming various internal barriers, fears, insecurities and complexes. Having received such lessons, you should not position yourself as a “victim” of unrequited love.

Psychologist tips to get rid of unrequited love

Consider the two most common situations: the lover has fallen out of love, or simply rejects, or when he has no idea about the feeling of love.

If feelings have faded.

The most pointless thing in this case – the hope and desire to “return feelings. This advice is incredibly difficult to follow, but you’ll find that it is the only true: you need to wait it out, get over it and not humiliate yourself in front of a man who rejects you, ignores you, avoids you. How can this humiliation be expressed, for which you will definitely be unpleasant after some time? Meaning intrusive calls (and in this case they are all intrusive), excessive attention, attempts to call again and again for a conversation or a meeting. Yes, hope dies hard, but you have to do everything possible to promote it, finding all the willpower that is possible.

Do not think that by causing pity in your partner, you will fall in love with him or hold him back. Usually, such pity is inseparable from contempt, disgust. Be resilient, and accept the fact that his (her) love is gone or basically impossible. Think about the shortcomings that repel the lover? People love all kinds: the wicked, the poor, the stupid. Just that person does not love you – the main reason why this union is impossible. Let go of the one who is indifferent, and you will meet the one who loves you.

Not satisfied with the position of “victim,” and you really want to end the suffering by breaking free from the captivity of unrequited love? Abruptly cut off the relationship, short calls, messages, any reminders. Don’t look for reasons why you can’t do it – better to find ways to implement this urgent recommendation.

Remember that almost everyone has faced this situation at some point. It will pass. However, the way you behaved will remain in your memory. Not just in your memory. Try to present yourself with dignity, so that when it passes (which is inevitable) you were not ashamed of weakness. Entrust your suffering to a friend, your mother or a psychologist, but not to someone who does not care about you.

It is important to clearly understand that such emotions are a psychological addiction, similar to alcohol or nicotine addiction. It takes time for the body to forget about the addiction. It will not be easy, but it’s time to start training willpower, it is still useful – take at least some benefit from torturing you relationship. Do not idealize your partner, and then you will realize that in your eyes it makes him special only your love, and the rest – in your life you have met and will meet other people more interesting, capable of treating you better.

If he (she) does not know about your feelings.

There are only two possible developments: a confession or get rid of unrequited love. If a confession is made and there is no response, try to take the tips above, but if you can not do it for some reason, do not ignore these recommendations. Life has given you a challenge, accept it with dignity.

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