How To Stop Loving Someone You Shouldn't Love

Medically reviewed by Julie Dodson, MA
Updated May 1, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

It can be challenging and sometimes feels impossible to stop loving someone you shouldn’t or lose feelings for them at all. Often, when you love or fall for someone you shouldn’t, or someone who doesn’t wish to be in a relationship anymore, the situation can end in unrequited love or love that isn’t reciprocated, leaving you to feel hopeless that your love interest will ever feel the same way. It can be crucial to face the reality of the situation and let go of fantasies and expectations in a healthy way, accept your emotions, spend time with family members, a best friend, or other friends, practice self-care and self-growth, and seek professional help if necessary. Surrounding yourself with positivity, finding closure, and working with a therapist can be beneficial.

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Practice self-care

Taking care of yourself can be an essential part of the healing process. Engaging in activities that make you feel good and improve your overall sense of self and well-being can be vital. Self-care activities that can help manage emotions, reduce stress, and enhance mental health should generally be prioritized.

Some examples of self-care activities may include the following:

  • Physical activity and exercise
  • Spending time on other relationships, such as with friends and family
  • Participating in hobbies and interests
  • Practicing mindfulness and meditation
  • Seeking professional help

Making positive changes in your life can also help you move on from unrequited love. These may include starting a new hobby, trying new experiences, and working on personal growth. By emphasizing the positive aspects of life and making improvements, you may allow your focus to shift away from the pain of unrequited love.

Surround yourself with positivity

Surrounding yourself with positivity can also help you stop thinking about and move on from unrequited or one-sided love. A loving relationship doesn’t have to be romantic, and spending time with others who care for you can be beneficial. You might try to spend time with supportive individuals who have your best interests in mind, engage in enjoyable activities, and seek out positive experiences to help you shift your focus toward the good things in life and provide comfort and support during the healing process.

Find closure

For most people, finding closure after a relationship (or hope for romantic love resulting in a future relationship) has come to an end can be a critical part of the healing process. Closure usually means accepting the end of the relationship and finding a way to move forward from these feelings of love. Although closure won’t make your feelings disappear overnight, this can help you process your emotions and find peace with the situation.

Several strategies may help you find closure, such as those listed below.

  • Having a conversation: If possible, having a conversation with your former partner or the person who was the object of your affection may help you find closure. Although this may be a challenging conversation, it can provide an understanding of their perspective and lead to peace with the situation.
  • Writing a letter: Writing a letter to the person, even if you never send it to them, can be a helpful way to realize your feelings, gain self awareness, process complicated emotions, and find closure.
  • Making a decision: Love is more than just a feeling; it’s a choice, and accepting your emotions and consciously making a decision to move forward can be beneficial. Sometimes, that can mean accepting that the person who you are no longer in a relationship with is not the same person they used to be or not the kind of person you want to love.
  • Attending therapy: Working with a therapist can be a great way to find closure and process emotions. They may provide support, teach you coping skills, and help you talk through and understand your emotions.
  • Finding a support system: Talking to individuals who understand your situation can provide comfort and support during the healing process. This could include a close friend, family, and support groups.
Moving forward is usually the goal after leaving a situation in which you loved someone you shouldn’t have. This can mean finding a way to heal, letting go of the past, and potentially starting to live life for yourself again. Although moving forward can be a slow process and may feel impossible at times, it can help you find happiness and peace. Try to take recovery one day at a time and remain optimistic.

Learn strategies for how to stop loving someone in online therapy

Engaging in online therapy can be a form of self-care that may provide a multitude of benefits, including finding closure and processing your emotions. Online therapy can be a convenient, flexible way to connect with a licensed mental health professional. If you’re in a dark place or feeling heartbroken or unmotivated, being able to attend therapy sessions from home, rather than a therapist’s office, can be helpful.

Loving someone you shouldn’t and ending the relationship, or accepting that your unrequited love may never be returned, can leave you experiencing symptoms of depression. Even when you’ve stopped loving a person, these symptoms may not pass as easily. Online therapy can be an effective treatment for depression and other mental health disorders. Even if you’re not living with a diagnosable mental illness, talking through your feelings with a mental health professional can be beneficial.

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Takeaway

Healing and peace can be attainable after you stop loving someone you shouldn’t by accepting reality, taking care of yourself, finding closure, and moving forward. With time and patience, breaking free from unrequited love and moving forward with life can be possible. It’s often essential to be gentle with yourself, take it one day at a time, and focus on the positive aspects of life. With the help of a professional therapist, you can work through these emotions and gain the tools you deserve to find closure and start living life for yourself again.
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