Unrequited Love: Does He Love You Like You Love Him?
Lady Caroline Lamb and Lord Byron
“There is only one serious question. And that is:…how to make love stay?”
- Tom Robbins. ‘Still Life with Woodpecker’.
Ever thought of how common unrequited love is? The world of pop music would be lost without lovers moaning about this most debilitating of emotions. And what of poetry? Shelley and Keats were so often in the throes of this kind of thankless love, they wrote a whole lot of poetry. It was, in fact, the fuel for their fire. Curiously, this sort of thing inspires many creative souls.
The infamous Lady Caroline Lamb was so mad about the poet Lord Byron who had ceased suddenly to love her, she stabbed herself with a fruit knife at a ball. No, she didn’t die that way. She spent the rest of her life in near seclusion, lost in memories of him, which is worse.
Here are the different ways in which women react to unrequited love.
This is quite harmless. You know you’re not really going to get to know intimately that gorgeous colleague of yours because you’re married or he is; your dentist or the dimpled guy who comes home to fix your computer every time it throws up. All you get is a tingle when you think of him on long, lazy afternoons and a tingle hurt nobody. And who knows, maybe that dentist you dig sleeps without brushing his teeth and washes his car in his ‘lungi’ every Sunday morning.
This is the type that has you alone and dressed in your spotty nightgown, bawling your head off over a romantic movie on TV and staring at the telephone that never rings. And his photograph that never talks. The words that live in your head day and night are: WHAT DID I DO WRONG? You were together for quite some time and then he just walked out on you one day.
All the conversations and fights you had run through your head as you search for the phrase that sent him away. You refuse to leave the house because he might just call you. You lose your friends, your creativity, maybe even your job. But nothing’s as bad as losing him to another woman. If it were a man, it wouldn’t really matter.
In short, you are no longer the woman he used to know. Or your friends used to know. All the guys avoid you because you look like you could eat them up in one gulp.
This could happen to you after you’ve boiled in all that obsession and nostalgia and self-pity. It’s a good sign. It means you’re on your way to recovery. In fact, if rejection ever happens to you, I’d suggest you get mad and get even. Or better still, brush him away as though he’s a mosquito and look for better objects of desire immediately so he can see that he was nothing to you anyway.
However someone did say, and rightly so, that hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. I know women who’ve pissed into a rejecting lover’s coffee, cut up his credit card and blown their noses into his shirts. Bianca Jagger is known to have cut off all the sleeves off Mick Jagger’s clothes.
A girl I used to know even resorted to the black arts. She made a wax model of the girl who was chasing her boyfriend (it was easy because she looked like she had globs of flesh all over her) and burned her slowly over a flame. The same day this man chaser landed up in hospital with severe diarrhea.
And the boyfriend? He was so put off, he allowed someone else to chase him. My friend said she should have tried a love potion instead – dropped spider leg juice into his Coke or something, but where was he?
One fine day you’ll wake from wild dreams of making parts of him fall off, and realize that you’re feeling fine. You can suddenly recall with great clarity the way he snores like he’s got a whistle up his throat, and that bit of hair that sticks out of his nostril.
The Bittersweet Beauty of Unrequited Love
© 2014 Anita Saran