How To Stop Liking Someone If There’s No Hope Of A Relationship

Updated December 6, 2022by BetterHelp Editorial Team

Maybe it's a crush you can’t shake. Perhaps you've fallen head over heels for someone who is already in a committed relationship. Maybe they’re part of your circle or someone at your workplace. Perhaps you have already tried a relationship with them, and you know it won’t work. They seem like the partner of your dreams, but, for whatever reason, you feel there's no hope of being with them. Coping with these feelings can be difficult, but you can get over them, no matter how impossible that might feel. Learn more about how to stop liking someone in this article. 

It Happens To The Best Of Us

Are Your Romantic Feelings Unreciprocated?

Unrequited love is part of the human experience. We see it in countless storybooks. Consider the story of Beauty and the Beast. Gaston has a crush on Belle and the barmaids have a crush on Gaston, but there's no real future for either longed-for relationship. While this is just a children’s story, the same thing happens in real life every day. 

It is natural to be attracted and develop feelings for another individual. However, if they do not feel the same way, you must decide if it’s worth pining over this person. If you’re choosing to try and move on, it can be a challenge. Acknowledging that it's time to move on because you see no hope of a future relationship is the first step to opening yourself up to new opportunities.

Where To Start

One of the best ways to start moving on is to try to limit contact with the person.  This may mean you involve yourself in activities or social groups that don't involve them. The less you see them, the less space they will occupy in your life. 

Picking up a new hobby or inviting some friends over for a movie-watching binge can also be a great distraction. Moreover, strengthening other relationships in your life can remind you to focus on the positive things you do have, instead of what you feel you are lacking.

What Did You Like About Them?

If you like them enough to need to get over them, then you probably know the root of your attraction. If the person has a lot of positive qualities, it can be tempting to keep them around as a friend. Or maybe this person already is a good friend, so you don’t know how to distance yourself. It may be difficult to navigate at first, but if you're able to let go of the idea of having a passionate relationship, you might find your friendship is able to benefit you both again.

There's Nothing Wrong With You

Just because you like someone who doesn't want to be in a relationship with you doesn't mean there's something wrong with you. It’s part of being human to have desires, and it’s not always in our control whether a person desires us back. Sometimes your interest might even be enhanced by the fact that you can’t have someone. After all, it can be tempting to romanticize what is unavailable. Be careful not to adopt the belief that there is some flaw in you just because it’s not working out. While there’s always room for growth, you are enough just as you are right now. 

How To Move On

It may seem impossible to get over these intense feelings you have for someone if they don’t reciprocate them. Remember, though, that it will be much more fulfilling to pursue a relationship with a partner who is available and who wants to be with you. Here are some actionable steps you can take now to help you move on:

Write It Out

Journaling can help you sort through your thoughts and decipher your true feelings. This practice allows you to be completely honest with yourself. That way, you can figure out exactly what characteristics you are attracted to so you can look for them in future partners. Putting your thoughts on paper can also help you release them. You might find they have less control over you as they are no longer bottled inside.

Change How You Think About The Person

Research has suggested that the only noticeable way to reduce feelings of love towards someone you’re not with is by changing the way you think about them. Specifically, you need to start thinking about them in a less appealing light. By recounting some of their negative qualities or the negative parts of your experience with them, you can push yourself along through the heartbreak recovery period.

Cut Off Physical Contact

Unless you have to work together or you have close mutual friends, it can be helpful to try to avoid crossing paths for a while. By preserving your personal space, you can do some necessary healing. Remember, you can always invite them back into your life later if you choose to. 

Unfollow On Social Media

It's easy to get sucked into cyber-stalking someone you experience attraction toward, but for your own peace of mind, consider hitting unfollow (or even the block button) on social media. This can be a temporary fix, or you may find it serves you for a long time.

Moving on often requires focusing on yourself. Focusing on yourself doesn’t have to mean sitting by yourself and feeling sad. Instead, you can try going out and doing something fun just for yourself or with a close friend. You could also try something you’ve been meaning to get around to like getting a facial, trying out a new hairstyle, taking a fitness class, or visiting a museum.

Meet New People

Take this opportunity to go out and meet new people without any expectation of developing a romantic connection. Simply making the effort to get out of your comfort zone and talk to new people can broaden your horizons. You may feel more invigorated and less lonely as a result.

Be Kind To Yourself

It's important to come to terms with your feelings, but there’s no need to beat yourself up over them. Resist the urge to judge yourself if you aren't healing as fast as you think you should be. Getting over intense feelings of attraction can be difficult and take time. 

BetterHelp Is Here To Help

Are Your Romantic Feelings Unreciprocated?

Working with a counselor can help you understand and work through this situation. You can explore why you developed these feelings, what it is you're drawn to, and what you should look for in your next partner. 

Unrequited love can be accompanied by painful feelings of rejection. You may even feel humiliated that you have romantic feelings for someone who doesn’t feel the same way about you. It can be difficult to open up about these feelings in person. That’s where online counseling has its benefits. 

Reaching out to a therapist online can make stepping forward more comfortable. 

Online therapy has been the subject of much research lately. Studies are showing that when comparing face-to-face versus internet interventions, there appears to be no real difference in effectiveness. For example, one meta-analysis (looking at studies involving 9,764 total individuals) found that online therapy is as effective as face-to-face therapy for a variety of different challenges, including those that involve relationships and feelings of rejection.

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"A year ago I was experiencing difficulties in my relationship, which highly affected my psychological state and interfered with my work. At one point, I decided to try BetterHelp.com. My counselor Dr. Brewer helped me to see some things I couldn't on my own and encouraged me to prioritize myself. It was a huge help for me at that point, which led to the decisions I am happy about."

Takeaway

It can be hard when someone you care about deeply does not feel the same way. As difficult as it may seem, you can overcome these feelings and grow as an individual in the process. Give it some time, try the tips mentioned above, and you will eventually find a fulfilling, lasting relationship with a partner who truly loves and supports you. Take the first step and speak to an online counselor today.

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