How To Stop Liking A Guy If There’s No Hope Of A Relationship
By: Jessica Saxena
Updated February 05, 2021
Medically Reviewed By: Christy B.
Maybe it's a crush you can’t shake. Maybe you've fallen head over heels for someone who is already in a committed relationship. Maybe they’re part of your crowd or part of the workplace. Maybe you see them nearly every day and can’t keep your thoughts off of them when you don’t. Maybe you have already tried it a couple of times with them, and you know it never works. They’re 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.
It Happens To The Best of Us
Unrequited love is part of the human experience. Everyone has at least one. 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, just like it is natural not to. However, if they do not feel the same way, these feelings can quickly turn sour as you try and decide if it’s worth pining over this person or trying to move on. If you’re choosing to try and move on, it can be a challenge.
Maybe you’re trying to move on from someone who does feel the same way. Maybe it’s an ex you just can’t seem to forget. Acknowledging that it's time to move on because you see no hope of a future relationship is the first step to opening yourself to new opportunities.
We'll share some tips for how you can begin to get over him. It will likely include some personal work and maybe some behavior shifts. You may have to do some self-reflection and work on growing yourself. You may even need the help of a professional, but in the end, you can trust yourself that you can move on and meet someone wonderful.
Where To Start
One of the best ways to start moving on is to try to limit his presence in your life or yours in his. This may mean you involve yourself in activities or social groups that don't involve him. The less you see him the less space he literally occupies in your life. Picking up a new hobby or inviting some friends over for a movie-watching binge can be a great distraction. Strengthening other relationships can remind you to focus on the positive things you do have in your life, instead of what you feel you are lacking.
What Did You Like about Him?
If you like him enough to need to get over him, you probably know why you’re so attracted to him. If he has a lot of positive qualities, it can be tempting to keep him around as a friend. Or maybe he already is a really good friend, so you don’t know how to distance yourself if you rely on him in this sense. 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.
If you discover there actually were not that many qualities about him you really liked, getting over him may have just gotten easier.
There's Nothing Wrong With You
Just because you like a guy that 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 desire things, and it’s not always in our control if that thing desires us back. Sometimes your interest might even be enhanced by the fact that you can’t have someone. It can be tempting to romanticize about what is unavailable. Be careful to not sink into thinking that there is some flaw in you just because it’s not working out. While there’s always room for growth, you are enough where you are right now. Everyone has different things they are attracted to. This varies tremendously in looks, size, height, personality, and interests. He might not be attracted to you right now, but someone else will be.
How To Move On
It may seem impossible to get over these intense feelings you have for someone if they don’t reciprocate. It will be much more fulfilling to pursue a relationship with a partner who is available and ready to be with you. Here are some actionable steps you can take to help you move on:
Write It Out
Journaling can help you sort through your thoughts and decipher your true feelings. It allows you to be completely honest with yourself and figure out exactly what characteristics you are attracted to so you can look for them in future partners. Putting your thoughts on a page can also make you feel like you’re releasing them. You might find they have less control over you as they are no longer bottled inside.
Change How You Think About Him
Research has actually 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: namely, thinking about them negatively. By recounting some of their negative qualities or the negative parts of your experience with them, you can push yourself along the heartbreak recovery period.
Cut Off Physical Contact
Unless you have to work together or you’re close friends, it can be helpful to try and avoid crossing paths for a moment. By preserving your personal space, you can do some of the healing needed to invite him back if you choose to later. You can take a mental inventory of the places you frequent and consider how likely it is you’ll see him there.
Unfollow On Social Media
It's easy to get sucked into cyber-stalking someone you care deeply about, but for your own sanity, consider hitting unfollow (or even the block button) on social media. It can be a temporary fix, or you may find it serves you for a long time. Taking away your access to their activities can help you from feeling engrossed in their life and will give you the time and space you need to move on.
Focus on Yourself
Moving on often requires focusing on yourself. Focusing on yourself doesn’t have to mean sitting by yourself feeling sad. You can try going out and doing something fun just for yourself or with a dear friend. You can try something you’ve been meaning to get around to, like getting a facial, trying out a new hairstyle, taking a new fitness class, or visiting a museum.
Meet New People
Take the 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 talking to new people you haven’t before can broaden your horizons. You may feel more invigorated and less lonely.
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. You don’t have to judge yourself if you aren't healing as fast as you think you should. Getting over such intense feelings can be difficult and take time. Be kind to yourself, and give yourself grace.
BetterHelp Is Here To Help
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. Your counselor is an objective third party that isn't going to judge you. Everything you say will be private. Beginning to work with a therapist online can be a great, comfortable step forward. 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.
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"I would totally recommend Christine. She was very supportive and assertive when counseling me. I like that she was attentive and always kept the communication and the conversation flowing. The information that she gave me was very useful and I would have love to keep in her counseling. She is excellent at romantic relationship issues. :-)"
"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."
You Owe It to Yourself
It can be hard to have someone you care about deeply not feel the same way, but it's not the end of the world. 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 the fulfilling, lasting relationship with a partner who truly loves and supports you. Take the first step.
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