This is one of my most popular posts from my old blog, ChiaraSays. Enjoy and please share with those in need.
How do you deal with loving someone who doesn’t love you back? Why is it so hard to get over it and come to grips with reality? What’s preventing us from healing from such a deep wound, knowing the pain can often be unbearable?
Love hurts. Love stinks. Love is blind. At some point in life, we’ve all experienced the pain that poets and songwriters have written about for ages. Usually, it’s because we’ve loved someone who hasn’t loved us back. Feeling so emotionally invested in something we’re being told doesn’t even exist is often the most excruciating pain, yet we endure it. Why?
There are many degrees of one-sided love. If I were to describe them all, we’d be here all day and you wouldn’t actually get to the solution part of the article. In the name of salvation, I’ll only discuss the three MAIN ones instead.
Obsession from Afar:
You know this one. You’re head over heels for someone who doesn’t even know your name. Or perhaps you’re madly in love with a friend or acquaintance who is, for one reason or another, completely unattainable. I’d like to believe this only happens in movies, but, unfortunately, our minds are powerful, powerful tools; if we want something bad enough, we don’t need much to go on in order to believe someone is within reach.
The Repeat Offender:
This one refers to relationships and is by far the most common and the most delusional. Not only do we hold on to the hope that somehow the “love” will be rekindled, but we’re willing to wait around forever because we simply refuse to believe that such passion could be so short lived. When you started dating, you could have sworn up and down that no one had ever experienced the type of connection the two of you had. You ignore all signs that are telling you it’s over and, despite the overwhelming pain and nights spent crying, the smallest part of you holds on for dear life.
You’re Great, but I’m Not Interested:
This one is perhaps one of the most relatable: you gather up the balls to express your undying devotion—or mere attraction—to this person only to get rejected with the standard, “Oh you’re sweet…, but you’re not really my type.” Or the worse, “But we’re such good friends, I couldn’t.” What sets you apart from the rest of the world is that you don’t just walk away in defeat and go for your next potential obsession; you wallow in misery and refuse to accept rejection.
Why We Can’t Just Move On
Love is a clusterfuck of complexities. And like the previous section, I can’t describe all the reasons we fall into such a painful trap. Not only are there too many to list—dependent on each individual case—but some just cannot be explained with rationality. With that being said, here are two reasons we deny escape:
1. Wishful Thinking
This is the devil. There are a few stages of denial: Your friends could lay out a list of reasons why you need to move on and you would remain there, glossy eyed and oblivious. That’s the worst stage and it needs the most intervention. The lesser and more common stage is when you’re completely aware of every single reason you need to stop loving the person, yet you simply can’t and you don’t know why. I’ll tell you why. It’s because deep inside, small and buried away, is the last ray of wishful thinking. Like cancer, it multiplies at the sign of hope for survival. And really, no matter how large or small, the potential damage is the same.
2. Our Ego
You’d never admit it, but deep inside you’re wondering, “How can this person not see how much of a catch I am?” You can’t help but wonder what he sees in his new lover. This way of thinking is pretty harmless. In fact, having an ego about the situation can usually result in you realizing you’re too good to endure such pain and rejection. However, it takes nothing more than a little push and bam. You’re back into delusion land; you once again believe you’re so great that your doorbell is going to ring any second, and your obsession will be down on one knee whispering, “I was wrong… you are the one.”
Wake Up. Your life was not written to be a Katherine Heigl or Patrick Demsey movie.