Saturday, 22 December 2007

Unrequited love...


...how to get over feelings for someone who you 'like' who clearly doesn't feel the same way, if you have these feelings for them frequently and you feel that these thoughts are letting you down in your relationship with Jesus, as someone who is single. (Btw I've experienced this a lot, so I know what I'm talking about when I'm writing this.)

  • Firstly, pray - ask God to help you stop thinking about them. Completely.
  • Ask God to give you different intentions for going to places and question the desires you have already.. i.e. are you going to church to listen to the sermon and catch up with other Christians, or to secretly ogle the guy(s)/girl(s) you know will be there?
  • Ask God to help you trust in His perfect timing, and help you remember that singleness is a gift. Ask Him to help you remember you are single because of a reason... you have a lot more independence than men/women who are dating or married, so welcome singleness with open arms. Grow closer to God in the time that you have and do what you want to and are free to do without the 'burden' of being 'tied down'. Remind yourself that there is someone out there worth waiting for and God's timing is perfect... at the moment you may feel that everyone you know has been out with someone apart from you, but there will probably come a time when it will be your turn... and it is worth looking forward to that time. Remind yourself you are probably missing out on great opportunities and trying new things now, because you're dwelling on people who don't give you the attention you deserve as a child of God. Pray for opportunities that will get you involved in other stuff that's good for your spiritual growth - helping out in church, charity work, music, children's work, preparing bible studies etc..

What you should do after you've prayed...

  • Subtly avoid the person(s): so if they're at church/school, don't try to talk to them so much, or if you text the person(s) or send them e-mails, avoid sending so many.. and don't stare at your phone/computer waiting for a reply from them.
  • Read 'I Kissed Dating Goodbye' by Joshua Harris... it reminds the reader of the freedom and the opportunity of finding out more about Jesus and the benefits of spiritual growth in Him, a gift that singleness can bring, a relationship you can pursue deeper when you're not dating someone.
  • If you have a crush on someone, it's inevitable that your mind will often wander to them. If this happens and thoughts of them pop into your brain on a permanent basis and they are thoughts you know it's wrong to think (nuff said) then think of something else, like a Bible verse about purity or work you really have to do and think about that instead.
  • Write a poem about how you feel, or write something down expressing your feelings... maybe write a letter to her/him explaining how you're trying to get over them and how you don't want those feelings for them anymore - but don't send them or show them to anyone!
  • Keep on reminding yourself that if you 'like' someone and they obviously don't 'like' you back, then they're not worth thinking about in that way.
  • Talk to a friend, preferably of the same gender as you, whom you can trust about what you're feeling, preferably someone who is not going to come across 'that person' ever. It's better if they follow Jesus too, because then they can pray with you and usually share your view on what you should do about it.
  • Imagine if your crush(s) was/(were) in an accident and it damaged them in some way with serious consequences (use your imagination for this part).. would you still like them?
  • Try and list all the reasons why you shouldn't like the person you like... are they following Jesus? Are they friendly towards people in general? Do they really care for them? Do they try and make new people feel welcome? Do they already have a boyfriend/girl friend? Do you like them just because of what they look like or the things they have? Are they arrogant, vain, controlling, superficial, selfish etc..? - it sounds really mean but pick out these flaws so you become convinced that they are not the one for you and you deserve someone better.
  • Consider 1 Timothy 5:1-2 and other verses the Bible has in the NT.
  • Listen to some music that will help you feel better.. not mushy stuff that will only make you long to be with someone, but something else... for me I find Avril Lavigne (*I cringe at those words I've just written*) works.. and a song that's come out recently by the Plain White Tees called Hate (I really don't like you), may seem a little extreme, but it's something I could relate to. Lost prophets is good as well.
  • If you watch romantic movies, and find yourself afterwards wistfully wondering why you haven't found the 'man of your dreams' yet (this probably applies only to girls and women lol) stop watching those types of films. This can also apply to TV programs, magazines, music videos and novels. If you find these are a hindrance to focusing on God, get rid of them or don't watch them. Maybe get together with friends who feel the same way, so you can encourage eachother not to believe the lies Satan keeps on telling us through the media.

If you regularly read my posts, you're probably wondering why I posted something like this up, especially on my birthday (yes I am now 16.. scary isn't it?) Well it's because I realised a week or so ago about how much of my life I've wasted by thinking about guys. I don't want other people to waste their precious seconds of their lives thinking how I did (and sometimes still do.) Enough said, but do comment, I won't be offended by almost anything you say.

God bless you and have a great Christmas and New Year!

Imogen xox

28 comments:

Olivia said...

Wow! How true it is that so many teens waste their time drooling over a person of the opposite gender!I think dating is for when you are older and are able to consider marriage! Great article and happy sweet 16 (mines 2 weeks from Tuesday!) Olivia Coy

P.S. If you get the chance check out my family's blog:
www.thecoyz.blogspot

imogeninchrist said...

Found this poem which reminds us all why it's best to wait for 'the one' instead of giving your heart away too frequently.. http://wenslyn.blogspot.com/2008/04/gods-reply.html

Natalie said...

Thank you for this.

Smiling Prophet said...

Thank you for this. It is helpful, but I am having lots of trouble keeping him out of my head. If God made it clear that I should get away from him, then I would leave. It would be hard but no way can I choose someone over God. Nothing should and, hopefully, never will get in the way of God. He's my best friend. I became a Christian in May of 2008 and it was because of his apologetics and, obviously, the Holy Spirit working through him that helped me understand Christianity for the first time. My life has done a complete 180 and his family and him have helped me along the entire way. However, he's confused me with his actions "pulling and pushing" he's also stumbling HARD with his girlfriends and it hurts him so much yet he keeps doing it. So he comes to me to help him talk. I'm basically an accountablility partner. I don't want to leave him but it's so hard for me because he talks to me about his falls. Anyway I know you can't do anything about it. I just wanted to give you one of the situations that you help us try to overcome.

Kaela said...

I agree with almost everything you said, except the choice of music. Your should really try avoiding secular artists all together. I find that there is a lot of good Christian music out there, in ALL GENRES (really, its true) that can offer the type of comfort people need without using some of satan's tools, like hate. You can get the same feeling that Avril or Plain White Tee's can give you, plus more when God's word is running throughout the lyrics. It can be very powerful.

Great post. Exactly what I needed to hear. The guy I have a crush on is all of those good things unfortunately (for me) but I do believe the single life is the best way to get closer to our Lord.

God Bless

Rhawnie Green said...

Maybe not a "waste", but these are wise words. I see what your saying, and I am glad God gave you wisdom & that you are sharing this. God bless! ^-^

Ta'fxkz said...

maybe one day in eternity, unrequited love will make sense

Juls said...

Thank you.

I really needed to read this. My own problems with unrequited love are driving me crazy. Coming back to church and thinking about Christ and love is making me rethink a lot to do with the man I have feelings for. It is nice to see someone who was so young thinking as such. <3

Blessed be!
Juls

Anonymous said...

This was a great post and I know itw as posted a long time ago but I know this is problem many people have and I wanted to add my 2 cents :)

Another good tip is to write them a letter just explaining how you feel, how you met, what happened as you knew them-- everything that went on between you. When you see what happened written down sometimes it helps to speed up the recovery process. Write them every day until you no longer miss them.. it really helps

Anonymous said...

nice....
i feel guilty knowing im the source of somone elses pain in heartbreak, cus this guy is hurting that he cant get over me and he cnt even bare to look at me anymore or else it ll hurt him even more, i need help :( i cant give him advice without hurting him in the process D: n i dunno if he'll even follow :(

Anonymous said...

Although I could never fathom what the Lord would think, I'm just guessing He wouldn't want you to imagine someone getting into an accident, severely damaging them, just so you could get over them...

archangel08 said...

i can relate in this article for some point. since i myself had already experienced this stuff.. and thank god he show me the right way. God has always greater and brighter plans towards his child.. I love Jesus-Christ, for he is the one who guided me during that difficult hours, and he continually reaches out for me and talks to me so that i can be pure by him and thru him i am complete! i am not alone for Jesus-Christ is with me.. amen ^_^

enterINmyseason said...

I came across this poem after running a search on bible verses dealing with unrequited love. The only man I've loved for the last 6 yrs has ended our relationship last year..and I'm not crying anymore but I still miss him. How I've been dealing with it is by focusing on God each time I think about him. Today is another day I refocus my attention on Gods grace because he is on my mind. The idea mentioned above suggesting we listen to Christian music is a great one! As I was listening to Martha Munizzi's Best is Yet to Come album on Spotify, a certain title stood out this morning..."I Know the Plans I Have For You".. It is a great reminder that God is the author of our lives, only HE knows what is best for our lives..in all aspects including love. So my brothers and sisters be encouraged, remember that if that person left, that was God's doing for a bigger purpose. He has plans for each and everyone of us. If you have a chance, listen to this song on youtube.

God I pray that everyone who is reading this message, can have their hearts replenished, refilled, fulfilled in and by YOU! Fill our hearts with joy God! Renew our hearts. Heal our wounds! Encourage and strengthen us during our weak moments. Remind us that YOU are GOD, the ALPHA and the OMEGA, the AUTHOR and FINISHER of our lives. You are know what is best for us. And you have NEVER left our side. When we try to turn to secular things to comfort us, remind us YOUR word, grace and love is SUFFICIENT! In JESUS name I pray! Amen!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ja2XaS_JeDk&ob=av2n

Nicole said...

Im almost 40 and your words help. I truly love this man and im afraid he has no romantic feelings only.sexual. Im far greater than than that. While he is strong wise hard working ambitious. I pray God either steers me away to what I deserve or make him open his eyes to me. Either way I do what u say and stay clear of him. Please pray for me. Ill do the same for you.

Anonymous said...

God bless you for this post - incredible that you wrote it at 16!! I'm 41 and trying to let go of someone - this really helped. Thank you.

The Lord is my Strength said...

Thanks for this post. @ enterINmyseason: I enjoyed the video from Martha Munizzi. I am going through some tough times and that video was just such a blessing. I know God brought me to this blog to remind me that He has never left my side. God may have closed one door, but I believe He will open another one.

Ryan said...

Lots of wisdom for a 16 year old girl. Teens, and many adults, lack proper perspective which causes them not to be see clearly. They try to "make" a situation fit because they want it. They try to force it and throw all the cliches to justify a situation, like a relationship that isn't meant to be.

I am in love with a young lady, but it is unrequited. Sadly she has been obsessing over aguy who doesn't love her. Get this: she says "if I love him 100% he loves me 90%." There has never been a more idiotic statement mentioned! There is NO SUCH thing as partial love! That is an oxymoron. You can like someone 90%, you can be concerned about someone 90%, but you absolutely cannot love someone 90%. She nagged him for 7 years until, after not being able to find anyone else, he broke down and asked her to marry him.

Having read the posts here, I feel this perspective can benefit the readers.

Just because:

- you love someone doesn't mean they are right for you. There is such a thing as falling in love with the wrong person. don't buy the cliche "all that matters is that you're in love."

- it seems all of the elements are there doesn't mean they are the right person for you

There are such things as:

- being in love with being in love

- falling in love with the characteristics of the person thinking you are in love with them. This one was written especially for the lady who has feelings for the guy who brought her to Jesus

- being committed to commitment instead of being honest with and true to yourself

-misplaced loyalty (like the above) where you don't want to feel you are betraying / cheating the person or your character of faithfulness by exploring relationships with other people. You can't cheat on someone or betray them if they don't love you

To all readers: whatever you do, please don't try to force a square peg into a round hole. Don't waste your time and energy trying to make it fit and filling your head with rare exceptions like that one girl or guy who had their unrequited love turn into love. The bottom line is that love is not supposed to be hard. God didn't design it to be hard. So if they are not reciprocating, be happy you experienced the emotions associated with being in love, or in some cases having a crush. Don't be happy though if you are obsessed with a person who doesn't love you because that isn't healthy.

I am a 36 year old male and, though am very optimistic I am also very realistic. I no longer believe there is someone for everyone. I decided to write this because people try to encourage you with words like 'find the one for you' or 'God has someone for you.' However, that is not guaranteed to anyone. I don't believe in lying to yourself or others to ease their minds when they are experiencing unrequited love. What I will say to the readers here is it is clear that your unrequited love is not for you. That is what I focus on instead of giving myself false hope that they are not 'the one' as if to guarantee that there is one.

I understand many reference Jeremiah and God's plan to prosper and not harm, but that is not a guarantee you will find mutual love and get married. You can settle for someone who isn't ideal, who is 'close enough' but that doesn't mean you found 'the' person.

The most dangerous mindset is that you can't be alone. That makes you susceptible to getting involved with someone who is wrong for you and make your life worse. Singleness is not the worst thing. It is a blessing, and so is being married to the right person. They are both blessings in their own right.

Ryan said...

Make sure you know yourself first before trying to involve another person in your life. I understand sometime you weren't looking for love but ended up falling in love, with the wrong person. But aside from that, don't pursue a relationship until your know yourself first. Then if you do pursue someone, make sure they know themselves before getting deeply involved with them. Know what is important to you and don't compromise that. Don't try to convince yourself that things which are important to you can be compromised because you are trying to make the person right for you.

May the Lord bless you all in your lives.

Painting Joy said...

Thank you so much for posting this,Imogen! This was a blessing and encouragement to me because like Smiling Prophet,I am also struggling with having someone in my head and also would be willing to move on if I could only be 1,000 percent sure that he is not interested! I just can't get the hope to stay out of my head and it doesn't help that I'm not sure I want to. That being said though,I agree with Ryan completely about the privileges of singlehood,which was a longtime coming since I have wanted my own family since I was 14! I also agree that there may Not be someone for everyone,including me,and that I need to spend more time focusing on my relationship with the LORD and not thinking I can find fulfi!llment outside of that relationship.I know that I will need this reminder again and again so thank you everyone for posting! God Bless! :-)

Jelmar Bernas said...

Thanks for posting this, whoever you are. I'm in so much pain right now and I can relate to almost everything you wrote here. I actually cried. I hope someday I could get over her and fix my eyes on Jesus.

Imogen said...

Hey everyone who's commented on here.

I'm blown away that people are still reading this and are still encouraged. I'm so glad that God is still using this. I'm now 21, and have still been single, and continue to struggle with singleness. However, in the last year or two, have really been appreciating how awesome singleness is. I've written a few more posts about it at my tumblr website (which is my url for this comment) and really recommend this article, about seeing where we're placed as opportunities to serve God instead of moping in self pity - http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/single-satisfied-and-sent-mission-for-the-not-yet-married
Really hope it helps and may the Holy Spirit be moving in You to make you all more like our wonderful Lord and Saviour! xx

Painting Joy said...

Praying for you,Jelmar! I am in a lot of pain myself regarding someone so while I can't claim to know exactly how you feel since I don't know your circumstances, I know where you're coming from and how distressing(and depressing) it is! I don't want to end on a sad note though, hopefully things have improved at least a little for you at this point, God is always there for us,it's just hard to reach out at this time and accept it as being enough,it is for me,anyway!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this. I really like a guy who goes to my church and is on the youth group worship team with me, and I dont want to be going to church just to see him and be let down over and over again. He is my friend but he doesnt want anything more than that. Another friend of ours got involved and I think they both like each other and its killing me. I've just felt so lost but this really helped:)

Troy said...

Imogen, Thanks so much for your words of wisdom on the matter. It is so refreshing to receive them from someone so young.

I have had an attraction for a girl for a long time, I knew and know God has had & still has amazing plans for her life & until recently she has been a long distance away studying & developing her gifting with a large Christian organisation. Shortly after her return I felt I had to say something. I finally told her my feelings for her & while she didn't say no, she didn't say yes, just that it was the wrong time for her. She said she was incredibly flattered but also incredibly busy, I know she genuinely is. Perhaps she has been polite & trying to let me down gently.

I have had a struggle now with being around her. I have done many things on your list already & found the one that comforts me most is that 'singleness' is a gift. I had recently forgotten this and up until recently I have always been comforted by this. I find it hard to accept most of Paul's wisdom as I don't want to accept I will be single forever like him, I have had amazing opportunities to serve His Kingdom, that I know would not have happened if not single. I know I have many others in my church praying for me in regards to finding the right girl to serve alongside me.

I know about God's perfect timing & plans, but living in the world is incredibly frustrating to say the least. I have attempted to read many Christian based relationship books, & find many opinions contained in them difficult to put into my life, eg. date the wrong people... it lets you know who you really want to date (I'm sorry but this goes in contrast to many teachings I have experienced in the church) about guarding your heart and being honourable to others. So I am hoping the book you mentioned won't go in similar directions.

It has been quite some time since my last relationship (Loving her & her family & experiencing acceptance by them was the reason I came to know Christ) I have been hesitant to get into a relationship until I have been sure of the reason I am a Christian, not for her or a relationship with another girl but because of a genuine knowledge and acceptance by me of a creator God who sent His Son to die for my sins & wants a relationship with me first and foremost.

After hearing of that girl whom I had my last relationship with got married & has started a family - I had feelings of jealousy, envy, anger, disappointment & why not me? among other thoughts/feelings. It isn't as though I am not happy God brought her into my life, I know His plan for me had to include her. God had plans including her & allowed for the heartbreak of the end of the relationship to accept I needed Him rather than a relationship to fulfill that empty part in my life. I needed to accept Him through this difficult time as subtlety didn't work with me, I needed that sledgehammer to my head and heart to understand. God didn't allow for the test go too far, He knows my boundaries & provided this time of testing & development of character to mold me into the person I now am in Him.

May everyone here who is struggling with this topic find comfort that "YOU ARE NOT ALONE" the enemy uses those thoughts to cripple you & try to stop you to grow God's kingdom.

I pray that everyone finds the words of wisdom on this page refreshing & encouraging. I had to google "What does Christ say about unrequited love?" to find this & it was the first & best result I have found so far. I had been looking for a bible study on this, to help reinforce & make it a part of my daily life, & have found little so far. There are plenty on pure living, relationships & marriage but a lack on unreturned/unrequited love.

Everyone, keep fighting the Good fight & don't forget He is with us in these times. May God bless you & remind you He has great plans for you in His Kingdom. Peace & contentment be with you all.

Painting Joy said...

That was very encouraging Troy, thank you!

Kenneth said...

"So close yet so far", Seeing her everyday in work makes me helpless, there is this void in my heart that keeps on growing, I hope god would see my weeping, and someday i would understand his will, I now let go and let god.

Anonymous said...

Thank you very much. My thoughts and feelings have been consumed by this boy. Your words have helped me a lot. I will go back to this when I feel myself going backwards. Thank you

S.H said...

I'm so glad I found this! You couldn't have said it any better. I was just dealing with unrequited love last month. I felt absolutely frustrated because since I became a teen I've had many crushes and all have been unrequited. When I see it through gods view it all makes sense why I have experienced this. I have grown so much each time! I will be going into grade 12 and I now see I wasted my time as well. I now see that until the woman god wants me to marry comes I should stop looking for a girls love and focus on gods love. I have faith she will find me.