Unrequited Love: The Side No One Talks About


When people think of one-sided love, they often consider it from the perspective of the person giving unrequited love. They think of a person who loves another so deeply, but doesn’t receive this. This person is often thought of as the victim and the other as the villain. I, too, used to have such thoughts, until…


Text size

When people think of one-sided love, they often consider it from the perspective of the person giving unrequited love. They think of a person who loves another so deeply, but doesn’t receive this. This person is often thought of as the victim and the other as the villain. I, too, used to have such thoughts, until I found myself at the receiving end of affection I could not return.

I met guy X through a friend and the first time I saw him I didn’t even bother to take a second glance. He wasn’t my type. He wasn’t tall or dark, neither did he have this confident aura about him, nor amazing dress sense that always drives me crazy in a guy. In fact, I only spoke to him out of courtesy. And when I spoke to him, oh Lord! It only made matters worse because he had this thick Igbo accent that I can only describe as the biggest turn off I had ever experienced.

However, as the universe had it, guy X found himself attracted to me, and he made it clear. From that day onwards, he tried everything in his power (or so I assume) to get me. He asked for my number, which I felt would be mean to deny him. And so the antics started. Romantic texts, constant phone calls to check up on me, and dates, which I tried to avoid, but he wouldn’t take no for an answer. Thinking back to those times now, he really was a hopeless romantic.

All my friends noticed. And even though I made it clear that he wasn’t my type, they kept pressuring me to give him a chance.

Me: but I don’t like him. I can’t force myself to.

My friend: you will grow to like him Chioma! See ehn, the type of guy you’re looking for is the type of guy that will break your heart. Better take this one oh! He’s a good guy and he’s clearly into you, so you better not let him slip away o! If not, you will regret it.

Hearing advice like this over and over again made me decide to give guy X a chance, with hopes that I would eventually like him with time. So, when he asked me out, I said that we could see where things would go with us. He seemed so overjoyed with this answer, and honestly, because I had spent a significant amount of time with him, I had began to care for him. I didn’t want to break his heart. So, although I knew at the back of my head that I couldn’t love him the way he loved me—oh yeah, did I mention that he told me he loved me after about a month?—I went ahead with a relationship that I didn’t want in the first place.

After a while, I realised this wasn’t what I envisioned my love life to be like, especially as this guy started scaring me with talks of rings and marriage. So, I broke it off with him. And believe it or not, he cried. He cried and begged me to take him back. He said he would try better, and even told me that he would cut of his friends if that was what I wanted.

I was beyond shocked, because I didn’t think he would take it that badly. I felt so bad, because the problem wasn’t with him, but with me not feeling a certain way towards him, and so eventually, I took him back. This break up scene happened 3 other times before he realised that things wouldn’t be the way he wanted it to be, and he gave up.

The sad thing about this whole story is that I truly believe that somewhere at the back of this guy’s mind, he knew that the way he felt for me wasn’t mutual. And it made me question why he kept fighting for us to be together.

And so the story of Guy X and I ended. This experience made me think: maybe in stories of unrequited love, there isn’t always a clear victim or villain. Maybe sometimes, it’s just complicated.

Guy X and I no longer talk, but I’ve heard from our mutual friend that he’s seeing someone new now. So, I guess there really is someone for everyone.

Have you been the ‘victim’ or ‘villain’ in stories of unrequited love? What did you think of the other person?


  1. CeeCee
    I could totally relate to your write-up.

    I have been in a situation where this guy kept pushing and pushing. He was really cute and all but I just wasn’t attracted to him, there was just something about him. “At first I felt guilty and didn’t know how to say ‘No’ without hurting him. “So I had to lay low and continue to be nice, and wait, hoping the infatuation will fade. It was like a conspiracy of silence, where I didn’t want to openly speak rejecting words and he didn’t want to hear it.” That wasn’t a good strategy. After a while, it just became really annoying and it ended really badly. I learned my lesson and these days I just tell it as it is.

    I hear people say the love will come, but then I ask, what if doesn’t? I am a very physical person, if I don’t feel the attraction/chemistry right from the start (after the first date and second date), you automatically get sent to the friend zone.

    Sometimes we can’t help who we attract or loves us but I guess we can control what happens. Try to tell the person or act in a way that will make him get the fact that you are not into him(even though some people can be really dumb or just act like they don’t notice).

  2. Dr K
    I’ve been both; very recently, a villian. At first I tried to separate heart from head. On paper we were supposed to be perfect. Dude was amazing really, but my heart wasn’t just…connecting. “Give it time K”, I told myself. Time was going, dude was sending ring emojis all over the place and planning introduction, heart was still strolling. I had to leave. I had cried enough about not liking/loving him like I knew I could love or that he deserved. It’s sad really.
  3. Stephanie Garrick
    This is an amazing write up! I’m so proud of you. I completely understand where you’re coming from and I believe that there’s always another side to every story that people haven’t heard for whatever reason. Again, great job bestie! Love you
  4. Plum
    This is my story. So far i cant imagine kissing him no matter how physically appealing he his in all my time with him then we aint going anywhere. When such happens I try letting him down gently from d get go and I try to be sensitive about it by using the right words and giving as much space as possible. I forced it too once or twice and I remember running the opposite direction each time dude wanted to see me. The other one, I concluded we were better as friends as soon as we kissed even though I liked his company alot. It was so bland as if had kissed my cousin..I’m sure he must have felt it back then but chose to ignore it.

    Better to state it as early as possible when you observe you are getting more attention than usual than to lead them on.

  5. Lade
    Great write up Chioma! I can totally relate to this post.
    There was this guy everyone thought was perfect for me but I couldn’t see it at all. Guy was sweet, kind and even not that bad to look at (those rugged kind of fine) but I wasn’t clicking at all, plus zero attraction. we had very little in common, and guy didn’t even get my sarcasm, so much that we couldn’t even hold interesting conversations for long unless our mutual friends were present.
    So to show my friends I wasn’t just being Cruella de Vil and also to try my luck (since I’d been single for so long and mum’s contemplating intense prayer/deliverance session), I decided to give in.
    As the villain that I am, I broke up with him several times cause even after trying my best to make it work, I felt bad the feeling wasn’t mutual. But guy kept running back. I did care for him after a while but I still cringed when he held my hand (which i still find really odd). Needless to say, the few months of on and off relationship was an emotional turmoil for both of us. I was sad all the time cause I hated hurting him and he was going crazy trying to make it work.
    Tbh, I still feel like a villain when I think about it. But will it be selfish to say I was also a victim of unrequited love? There’s no winner here.
  6. M
    Question for the timeline. Probably not connected to the timeline. What happens when you are the person giving unrequited love and you have decided to take your L and go. But the other person who rejected you in the first place doesn’t want to let you go. She’s still calling and whatnot – trying to arrange hangouts and all that. In fact, so called person is even acting pissed off that you have decided to minimise contact and all that.
    1. Lucy
      She’s using you, simple.

      Let it go.

      , I recently told a guy off rudely when he wouldn’t take series of mild no for an answer. People need to understand that this is 2017 where playing hard to get is no longer a thing. If someone likes you back, they wouldn’t give answers like, ‘let’s see how it goes, let’s be friends first, lemme think about it or I need to ask the Lord first’ to proposals of a relationship.

    2. Chioma Post author
      I think that maybe then the person could be trying to keep you as a back up. I mean, think about it. They have made it clear that you’re not the one for them, and you’ve decided to cut your losses and move on, however, they’re still trying to hold on to you, and you make the mistake of thinking that they’ve finally realised the kind of person you are and finally want you. But what happens when someone comes along who they actually have real effortless feelings for? The bitter truth is that this person won’t likely bother to give you a second glance anymore, regardless of the fact that you’ve been led on. I think maybe you’re just being kept in case no one else comes along.
      Or I don’t know🤷🏽‍♀️. I’m no expert. Maybe she’s in fact finally seen you for who you are and wants to give it a chance now.
      1. Mo
        Your non-expert talk is the truth, sistre.

        I noticed females seem to be the only ‘villan’ commenting. Why?

        As for letting them know, I do it straight up, there’s no mercy in no saying it. I still did and i am still doing it to a very close friend, we get each other so well, but romance just hasn’t clicked.

  7. Nnanyel
    Lmao…..I was in this position till she decided to temp(text and dump) me with the line”I don’t love you like that anymore,Bros we should move on”. You did the right thing,sure he understands

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *