There Are Ways to Deal With the Sting of Unrequited Friendship by K. Sackville
We’ve all experienced unrequited friendship in some form, from reaching out to someone who doesn’t reciprocate our interest, to fending off an approach from an acquaintance we don’t particularly like.
Unrequited friendship can be extremely awkward, and surprisingly painful when you’re the one being rejected.
I’ve been unrequited, and it’s demoralising and confusing.
There is one woman I’d love to be closer to, and I’ve made several suggestions for lunch or coffee. She always seems enthusiastic, and tells me she’d love to catch up, but she never follows up, and never calls or drops me a message.
I feel embarrassed for caring, but I wonder why she doesn’t like me and what I’ve done wrong.
This is completely normal, says Elisabeth Shaw, CEO of Relationships Australia, NSW.
Unrequited friendship can hurt because it evokes the old dynamics from school – the cool group (them) vs the not cool group (us) – and the idea that a particular person holds the key to something we need.
…Of course, unrequited friendship can be ambiguous, so you can’t always be sure you are being rejected.
“I’d love to catch up,” my acquaintance says, but then never responds to my messages. Should I keep trying, or let it go? Is she genuinely busy, or is she trying to fob me off?
If you have experienced an unrequited friendship, there are ways to manage the discomfort.
My social work background informs my reaction. Firstly, don’t allow it to damage your sense of self worth. Remind yourself that no one is to everybody’s taste; not you, not me, not the person you find most likeable in the world. You may simply not resonate with the person you wish to befriend. It’s disappointing, but it doesn’t make you less lovable or valuable.
Secondly, remember that many people are genuinely time poor. Your unrequited friend may like you, but have no current openings for new friends. They may have little time available for the friends they already have, and cannot add others onto the roster.
The remainder of that article can be read here.
(Link): How the Sexual Revolution Ruined Friendship – Also: If Christians Truly Believed in Celibacy and Virginity, they would stop adhering to certain sexual and gender stereotypes that work against both