Saying I love you and not hearing it back from someone who means the entire world to you can be a huge blow to anybody. When we are in such a situation, the first thing that comes into mind is the situation Carrie was in when Big left her on their wedding day in the series Sex and the City. It is one of the most heart-breaking circumstances you can go through.
When Big didn’t show up to his own wedding, it left Carrie traumatized for a long time. She was so heartbroken, she could not even enjoy her girls’ trip or even work for that matter. Feeling like you are in a one-sided love affair can make the whole world come crashing down on you.
But, fret not, it is not the end of the world; even if it does feel like it right now. There is a lot to look forward to in life and your growth should just not end because you’re sad about saying I love you and not hearing it back from the one you care about.
So, you said the three words but didn’t hear them back. Saying ‘I love you’ first and not hearing it back is probably anyone’s biggest nightmare. You feel as if you’ve been sucked down into a hole of emotions, hurt and devastation. You wonder if you read the signs wrong or if you said it too soon.
You’re mentally and physically exhausted from all the crying but just can’t stop thinking about this. All you want right now is a time machine that you could use to undo this. You wish you’d never confessed your feelings in the first place!
8 Ways To Deal With Saying ‘I Love You’ And Not Hearing It Back
Stop being so hard on yourself, for a simple reason that it won’t do you any good. First of all, you’re human. You are allowed to have emotions and express them. It is completely normal to feel shattered when you tell someone you love them and all you get is a look of confused emotions.
What you did wasn’t a mistake. If you have feelings for someone, they have to come out and you have to know how the other person feels too. If this hadn’t happened, you would be living a false fantasy thinking that the feelings were mutual. Knowing the truth can actually set you free in this case and stop you from diving too deep.
Unrequited love has many facets to it, and the sooner you accept the reality, the better. But, no matter what you do, you are still in a state of devastation right now. Here are 8 ways that you can deal with saying I love you and not hearing it back so you can get back on your feet quickly and say goodbye to the hurt:
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1. Sink back into your normal schedule
It is difficult to go out in public and face people. You fear that you will see your love again and won’t be able to hold back your tears or your agitation. But the truth of the matter is the more you isolate yourself, the worse your situation will get.
Staying alone and wallowing in your feelings will not allow you to distract yourself and feel better. Once you go back to your normal routine, you will have something to divert your mind with instead of dwelling on that one incident of saying I love you and not hearing it back.
When you start getting back to your normal routine, your brain will automatically switch to that mode as well. Remember, the best way to deal with rejection is to face it. Confessing your feelings to someone and being honest to yourself actually makes you strong and not weak.
2. Be honest with yourself
The truth is that you love this person immensely. This is a fact that is not going to change, at least not anytime soon. Learn to accept the fact that you loved this person and could have been a great partner to them. You could have given them all the happiness in the world but the truth is that they don’t feel the same way about you.
You need to accept this fact and move on. Don’t suppress your feelings. Instead, embrace them because that is the only way you will ever make peace with it and yourself. This is the only way you can get over this person and move on with your life.
If you really want to forget the sadness and recover from saying I love you, it all starts with being honest with yourself.
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3. Don’t chase them
They have already told you they don’t feel the same way about you. Hurts like a bullet, we know. Although it may seem tempting, there is no use going after this person and expecting them to change their mind. If there were any such feelings, you would have got your answer then itself.
Going after that person will only drive them further away from you and ruin the friendship/bond that you two shared before. Don’t get blinded by your emotions and lose an important person in your life. And definitely don’t fool yourself with fantasies that they do love you.
4. Stop obsessing over it
Agreed, saying I love you and not hearing it back can be devastating but dwelling on it is not a great idea either. Obsessing over it is a big waste of time and you are going to regret it once you get over this phase. Not hearing I love you back can be someone’s worst nightmare, but it’s also a reality check.
You tried to show them you care but now you know that it is in your best interest to walk away, try to think of it in that way. It can feel humiliating when you think about it in retrospect but there is nothing embarrassing about wearing your heart on your sleeve.
At least, now you know that you will not spend your time beating on a dead horse. Don’t dwell on those feelings and accept the fact that it is over and there’s nothing between the two of you other than friendship. This is better than obsessing over the possibilities of having an alternative ending.
Related Reading: 11 Ways To Stop Obsessing Over Someone
5. Acknowledge that they are still a big part of your life
That person may not have feelings for you and hearing I love you from them is something you should not expect but that doesn’t mean that the person doesn’t care for you. They could still be a big part of your life. Don’t spoil your present equation with them. Feelings come and go, but your constants still stay in your life.
Think about what is more important, your feelings of unrequited love or the kind person that you admire so dearly? If feelings have to come, then they will, but till then, stay the way you are with that person. Perhaps not as lovers, but as good friends.
6. Ask yourself why hearing it back was so important
To recover from saying I love you, not hearing it back and entering a whirlwind of sappy emotions, you have to introspect deeply to get out of it. Maybe you thought that the person feels the same and you couldn’t wait to get it out of your system. Or maybe you wanted a reality check or a confirmation from that person.
There can be many reasons why you said I love you. You could have wanted to hear it back to get validation. Take some time to introspect and identify the reasons why you wanted to hear it back. If you already knew that they don’t feel the same way and just wanted confirmation, this is it.
But ask yourself, will your life stop because of not hearing I love you back? Know your self-worth. You know that you can do better than this.
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7. Think about the other person’s situation
Do you think it was easy for that person to say no to you? They had their own reasons and you owe it to them, as their friend, to at least try to understand their perspective. What if that person said I love you, too, despite not feeling the same about you? Things would have been worse and more complicated, leaving you unsettled and empty at some point or the other.
Your bond with that person would never be the same and maybe you wouldn’t talk to them anymore because your one-sided love would cripple you. You need to respect the other person’s decision and understand why they did what they did.
There is always a concrete reason behind such decisions and you need to realize that. Yes, saying I love you and not hearing it back hurts to no extent but you can’t blame the other person for not feeling the same way since they can’t help their feelings.
8. Indulge in self-love and spend time with friends
In situations like these, you need to know your self-worth. Don’t lose your self-respect over someone. Indulge in self-love. Don’t be alone. Saying I love you first and not hearing it back can be a harrowing experience, but remind yourself that there are other people who love you so dearly.
Hang out with your best friends and enjoy every bit of your life. Go on that solo trip you always wanted to take. Your life doesn’t stop here. There are so many more people to meet and who knows which one turns out to be your perfect match. You can’t expect someone else to love you if you don’t love yourself first.
Love yourself and the world will love you. Saying I love you and not hearing it back breaks your heart. Getting over such a situation can feel like nothing less than a breakup. You feel betrayed and mad at the person, even though you know that it wasn’t exactly their fault.
This could be because you had too many expectations and when they came down crumbling, you didn’t know where to go. Such situations bring a lot of hurt and devastation, but also show you how strong you are and your road to recovery can make you such a brighter person.
You can get over this. Just know your self-worth and appreciate all the positives in your life. Things were great before this person was in the picture; then why can’t they be great again? Take your time to deal with these emotions and cry it out. But once you’re through, don’t look back. You deserve to be loved and cherished and if not them, hearing I love you from someone else who truly cares for you will feel so much better.