May 11, 2016

The Pain of Unrequited Love—a Think Piece.

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It is usually frowned upon to be in love with someone who will never feel the same.

We berate ourselves because, “He didn’t love me as much as I loved him!” We feel foolish and naive.

What if we began to see loving as essential, what if we loved for the sake of admiration of another? What if we loved just to feel love?

We are so often caught up in who feels what about whom that we forget that the journey is important, not the destination. Embracing the revolutionary idea that you do not need someone to love you to validate the love you feel may change how we love and express ourselves.

If we were to only love for the sake of getting love back, wouldn’t we be limiting ourselves? Most people don’t see all of their facets as worthy of love, keeping bits of themselves hidden to ensure they receive love. Practicing radical self-love could cure us of this need for acceptance. If we accept ourselves, love ourselves—what then? Can we be ourselves more fully? Express the bits of ourselves that are deemed unworthy by ourselves and others? Love from a place of purity rather than what the other can do for us?

When we validate and love ourselves, unrequited love no longer bothers us. Our heads don’t run rampant with what we’re doing “wrong.” We begin to understand that whatever reason they have for not returning our feelings is about their own personal journey and doesn’t reflect our perceived flaws. We begin to understand we can learn the lessons they were meant to teach us without clinging to the idea of them being “ours,” because that’s not the point anyway.

When we fall in love with someone, it’s because of qualities and traits. (We adore their courage, passion, or creativity!) Maybe we begin to even embody a little more of that energy in our own lives. What if unrequited love could inspire us to not only love ourselves but to fully step into the power of who we were meant to be?

Consider this: maybe they weren’t supposed to be our lover forever, maybe they were part of our journey to teach us how to express ourselves artistically. Maybe they broke your heart because they fear getting close. Maybe the love another cannot give us has nothing to do with our “faults.”

Maybe we can even learn to embrace unrequited love (especially if it’s painful!) because there’s beauty alone in how deeply we can feel!


Author: Alana Hill

Editor: Catherine Monkman

Image: NomiZ25/Deviantart

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