Unrequited love is a love that is not openly reciprocated. The one who is adored may or may not be aware of his/her admirer’s romantic affections. They also may ignore their admirer out of lack of interest or the presence of another lover. “Let no one who loves be called altogether unhappy. Even love unreturned has its rainbow” (J. M. Barrine, The Little Minister). This certain type of love has been depicted as an unselfish and uncomplaining willingness to accept suffering and humility.
Psychiatrist, Eric Berne, considered that ‘”the man who is loved by a woman is lucky indeed, but the one to be envied is he who loves, however little he gets in return”. Some may see this as a negative, and while it does have negative effects, it also shows such selflessness. A quality many people in our society now lack is compassion, love, and understanding. It is truly a quality that is envied by others. Some may think, “How is it possible to love someone who does not even know you exist? , well that just goes to show how much they invest in caring for other people no matter what benefits they will receive. However, there are also negative effects of an unrequited love. Research suggests that some negative emotions the rejector feel are emotions such as: anxiety, frustration, and guilt. Founding father of psychoanalysis, Freud, pointed out that “when a woman sues for love, to reject and refuse is a distressing part for a man to play”. He is basically stating that it causes the suitor, male or female, pain and agony to reject their admirer.
Now in most cases the unrequited lover usually always retain some hope that he/she will change their mind one day, however, the rejector’s outcomes or effects are predominantly all harmful to their well-being. While the beloved suffer from negative effects, so do the admirer’s, and they are much more harmful. If the unrequited lover has trouble expressing their emotional needs it may lead to feelings such as depression, low self-esteem, envy or jealousy towards the beloved, anxiety and rapid mood swings between depression and extreme happiness.
We constantly see examples of unrequited love today in movies, books and songs. They all often portray the positive effects once the rejector comes to his or her senses and decides to be with the admirer. However, this is not always the case; In fact, most of the time the admirer never gets the satisfaction of having a relationship with their love. Although, with positive examples like this it makes it easy to understand why the admirer persists after facing rejection.
It is all because of the hope they continue to have. In terms of the feelings of the hopeful one, they feel about the same amount of pain as does someone who is going through the breakup of a romantic relationship without ever having had the benefit of being in that relationship. While some may say the negative effects of an unrequited love outweigh the positive effects, the unrequited lover posses one of the most important characteristics, which is selflessness.