Roy Tang

Programmer, engineer, scientist, critic, gamer, dreamer, and kid-at-heart.

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(Warning: sappy!)

Have you ever been in love with someone who can't love you back?

Unrequited love: one of the worst possible states a human being could ever hope to achieve.

It starts quite innocently. You start to notice this certain person. You find her sweet and friendly. You like the way she looks, the way she talks, the way she smiles. She's pretty cute, she's smart, and her smile is enough to melt your heart. You hang out with her every so often. You find something about her that turns you on. Pretty soon you find yourself thinking about her more than usual.

What is it about her that has your interest? You're not sure. You don't even know her that well. She's not the type of person you always thought you'd fall for. She's not a super-beautiful hot babe. She doesn't give any special indication that she's even remotely interested. But your heart doesn't give a damn, you love her anyway.

You start to worry about how you're feeling. You wonder whether you should try to get close. Or maybe you should be upfront and tell her how you feel. You agonize for weeks; all the words left unsaid, swimming around in your head, yearning for release. You want to be careful. But you want to shout your love from the rooftops.

It doesn't matter. In a moment of weakness, it comes out. Your first mistake. You tell her how you feel. Verbally, by SMS, by email, by chat, by hand-written note, it doesn't matter. It all starts coming out. Like a fool, you pour your heart out, believing that your love for her is enough; enough for her to give you a chance.

No such luck. She won't even consider it. She can only be your friend she says. You walk away, sad, shattered, dejected, not knowing what to do. It rips away your heart, the fact that you love her so much, you feel so strongly for her, yet she cannot return even a fraction of the intensity of your emotion. You feel so helpless, so powerless over this situation that means the world to you.

You ask yourself what went wrong. Did you say something stupid, did you do anything wrong, did you blow it? No, she says, there's nothing wrong with you, it's me. Bullshit, you say to yourself.

You try to keep on hanging out with her, to be her friend, as she says. But you can't . Every moment you spend with her is infinity of torture. You want to speak out, tell her how you feel, remind her that there's someone loving her. Seeing her is pure agony. In yet another moment of weakness, you make your second mistake. You tell her you still love her, you tell her you're still there.

She refuses to talk about it; she says she doesn't want to feel the guilt. Damnit! You blame yourself, asking why you always say the wrong things at the wrong time.

Soon, things become awkward between the two of you, and you drift apart. You see her everyday, but you barely talk. You still feel the same way, but you can't even comfortably spend time with her anymore.

You tell yourself that you should just try to be her friend. You bottle up your feelings, try to set them aside. They eat away at your heart, tear apart your soul. Running into her becomes a double-edged sword; you're glad to see the smile on her face, but you're saddened by the awkward silence that exists between you.

You start to question yourself. You start to ask God what you did to deserve this sort of pain. Are you really so unattractive, so unremarkable, that the girl of your dreams won't even consider you? Was it really too much to hope that this girl could at least look beyond your outer shell and try to get to know the real you?

You start to doubt the girl you fell in love with. Maybe she wasn't as nice as you once thought? Maybe she's an evil, heartless bitch? Maybe she's no more special than you are, maybe you've put her up on a pedestal, and maybe you'd just be disappointed if the reality did not match your expectations? Is she really worth all this pain?

You start to think about how you feel. Are you really in love with her? Or do you just want her because you can't have her? Are you in love with the real her, not just some made-up idea of her?

"This is madness!" you finally conclude. "There has to be more to life than this... Why should I waste so much of my time and energy pining over this woman, a woman who will probably never even consider me, a woman whom I'm not even sure why I'm attracted to?" You come to a decision. You will get rid of these feelings, these emotions; push them away to some dark corner of your soul and leave them to rot.

And you do it. It pains your heart to do so, but you start to avoid her. You don't talk to her unless you need to. Whenever you think of her, you throw yourself into your work, your hobbies, your friends, anything to rid your mind of her lingering presence. You do what it takes. You pull out that part of your heart that remembers her smile, and you bury it inside, deep inside, so that you may never feel those painful emotions again. You kill that part of your soul that knows how to love and how to live.

It is living pain and torture, but eventually you manage to do it. You manage to regain control of your mind, heart and soul. You're finally at peace. All is right with the world.

And then you see her again.

She greets you, talks to you, compliments you, smiles at you. And suddenly all your hard work fades away. Your world is no longer your own. You're falling in love, all over again.

You recognize it, and you accept it. You are able to survive, because somehow, through all those moments of pain, heartbreak and despair, a light shines through. Every so often, you manage to get some time to sit with her, talk to her, see her smile. And those moments, while very rare, are also very precious. Those moments are pure, unadulterated bliss, and you wish there was a way to make them last forever. They are no more than fleeting instants between oceans of pain, but somehow, those few moments are enough to make all of the loneliness worthwhile...

And the cruel, vicious cycle repeats itself...

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Last modified at: Jan. 17, 2021, 4:58 a.m.. Source file