How to Stop Loving Someone

Two Methods:Stopping an Unrequited LoveGetting Over an Ex

If you find yourself in love with an ex or someone who doesn't love you back, it's normal -- and even healthy -- to put an end to those feelings. To stop loving someone, putting distance between you will be key in any situation. For an unrequited love, you should also focus on telling yourself why that relationship wouldn't work and creating opportunities to notice other people. For an ex, remind yourself of what led to the breakup and keep yourself busy when you start feeling blue. It can be difficult to stop loving someone, but given time, your wounds should heal.

Method 1
Stopping an Unrequited Love

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    Reduce contact. If you can manage it, cut off all contact with the object of your affections. This doesn't mean “do it if you feel like it;” rather, it means “do it if you can manage to do it without making things harder elsewhere in your life.” If you work alongside your unrequited love, for example, flatly refusing to communicate with him or her is only going to make things worse at work. Just do as much as you reasonably can.
    • Stop calling, e-mailing, texting, or otherwise reaching out to your love. If he or she contacts you, either don't respond, or politely decline any offer to converse or spend time together. This will help put distance between you quickly, which you'll need in order to begin seeing past your feelings.
    • Have excuses on hand to decline offers to spend time together. If you see your love in person on a regular basis, you may be invited out, for example to get a drink after work with other coworkers. Decline these offers by explaining that you're too tired or too busy, whether you really are or not. Again, the goal is to increase the space between the two of you. Eventually, if you never hang out, the other person will stop asking.
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    List flaws and problems. Once you're in less contact with the person you love, cement your new distance by examining reasons a relationship would never have worked out anyway. Start with the obvious one: the person you love doesn't love you back. No amount of convincing could have ever changed that; emotion trumps reason when it comes to love and romance. From there, add more reasons.
    • Focus on potential problems with the relationship first. Think about awkwardness with mutual friends, relatives, and coworkers. Write down mundane things like schedule conflicts as well; think about friends your love has that you dislike, and then imagine having to spend a lot more time around them.
    • Add flaws to fill out the list. It's tempting to just list your own flaws, but now's not the time: that's tantamount to beating yourself up over something that never happened to begin with. Instead, think critically about the person you love. This is difficult, but it's good practice. Think about annoying habits, views you disagree on, and times when you were disappointed by his or her words or actions.
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    Make it a point to notice others. Now that you're not spending leisure time around your unrequited love, it's important to begin noticing how many other attractive people there are all around you. It's true that you're unlikely to feel a spark with most of them, but that doesn't mean you can't appreciate a pleasant voice, a nice butt, or a great conversation for what it is. Make a conscious effort to focus on the attractive qualities of others you see and meet. Before long, you'll find that there's plenty of room in your heart for new crushes.
    • Don't worry about finding someone else to fall for just yet. At this point, just prove to yourself that you can have eyes for someone other than the person you were in love with.
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    Give it time and move ahead. Unfulfilled dreams of romance have a funny way of drying up and blowing away when you stop feeding them. However, getting to that point takes time. Stick with your plan: make room for others, stay away from the person you fell for, and remind yourself of flaws and problems when you're feeling weak. One day you'll wake up and realize that it no longer breaks your heart to think about what could have been, and you're looking forward to a new adventure instead.
    • It's likely that, in the absence of an actual relationship with the person you loved, you'll eventually look back and realize you never loved them at all – you were just intensely attracted. It's hard to really, truly love someone when it's all one-sided. Take comfort in this fact as you work on getting to the point where you can acknowledge it for yourself.

Method 2
Getting Over an Ex

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    Focus on the difference between “love” and “in love.” When you've got a long history with someone, it's hard to imagine you'll ever stop feeling some sort of special connection with him or her, even if you know you'll never want to date that person again. That's normal. Where confusion arises is in understanding that even if you still love someone, you can end up not being in love with them anymore. Try to grasp this difference so that you can be more at peace with your residual feelings without feeling as though they're indicative of a spark that's no longer there.
    • Think in terms of relatives. You love your parents and siblings, but you'd never say you're in love with any of them. There are other types of love aside from romantic love. It's okay to remember someone fondly and admit that a part of you will probably always love them, as long as you can be clear with yourself that it's a familial kind of love. All you have to focus on is getting over the “in love” part of the equation. There's no need to rip your guts out and rearrange them, too.
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    Give yourself distance. A breakup is devastating for both parties, and you're going to need time and space away from your ex to successfully cope with it. At the most basic level, this means cutting off contact with your ex and avoiding spending any more time around him or her than you absolutely have to. Unfortunately, sometimes your ex won't be able to make the same commitment. If your ex keeps reaching out to you, meet somewhere neutral and explicitly tell him or her to stop contacting you.
    • Be clear and firm. It might be heartbreaking in the moment, but it's for the best. Remember, you're not getting back together – you broke up for a reason, after all (and possibly for several reasons). No matter what your ex says, space and time away from each other is good for both of you in the long run. If he or she isn't strong enough to accept that, you'll have to be strong enough for the both of you.
    • Be civil. Don't come out of the gate swinging; don't attack your ex for contacting you, or whine about it. Instead, shoulder the responsibility yourself. Say things like “I really need time away from you to heal; I can't handle seeing or speaking to you right now.” Keep the focus on yourself and what you need, rather than being accusatory or spreading blame.
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    Record the breakup. Writing is a useful tool for getting thoughts and emotions out of your head and clearly organized so you can handle them better. Few life events are as overwhelming as a protracted breakup after a long and close relationship, so take advantage of your literacy and write things out. Describe the breakup; describe how you felt when things were at their lowest, and how you still feel when the weight of it hits you. Write down anything you can to make the burden easier to bear.
    • Write down a list of everything you dislike about your ex, and add to it whenever you think of something else, even if you've already got a similar item. Don't dwell on this list; hate is pointless and damaging to your own psyche. Instead, just use it as a way to vent, and as a clear reminder of why the breakup had to happen when you feel your resolve wavering.
    • If you're completely overwhelmed by an experience, write it down and then shred or burn the paper it's on. This helps push the experience out of your mind.
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    Busy yourself elsewhere. The absence of a significant other in your life has likely left a vacuum of empty time in your daily schedule. Fill it with things that have nothing to do with the breakup or your ex. It's okay to spend some time moping or reflecting, but it's very easy to end up wallowing in your own bad feelings without a plan to keep yourself occupied.
    • Take up or increase your exercise regimen. Exercise is a proven way to reduce bad moods – it can even combat clinical depression, in some cases. Exercise as much as you safely can, as many days per week as you can.
    • Socialize more. Get in touch with old friends or make new friends by joining clubs and visiting social events – whichever way you approach your social life, make it a point to increase the time you spend around others who like you. Knowing that you still have a place in your social landscape really lifts a heavy heart.
    • Take up hobbies. Anything from collecting items to building them in your garage is a good choice. As long as you can spend time and see constructive results, your hobby will help you cope by channeling a lot of your energy into something creative and positive. Even practicing new makeup styles or outfits can work, provided you take the time to work at it.
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    Meet new people. Eventually, it'll be time to go out and start dating again. Don't rush into this; it isn't fair to use someone else as a “rebound,” and it prevents you from properly coping with your own feelings. However, once you're able to control your emotions when you think back to your ex, nothing will help boost your spirits quite like going on dates with some new people.
    • Attend every party and social event you can. If you don't know people who throw parties, look up dance nights, open mic nights, and other free or cheap community events, and plan to attend. Dress up and look your best; you never know who you might meet.
    • Sign up for an online dating service. Free services, such as OKCupid, are really the only way to go here, since there's no guarantee you'll meet anyone you really hit it off with. That said, online dating sites are a great way to set up dates and test the waters again without having to make a commitment right off the bat. Date around some and try to have fun with it.


  • It's fine to distract yourself with simple, passive activities like TV, movies, and video games, but don't neglect constructive hobbies and socializing just so you can spend more time vegetating.
  • Think about their flaws and everything bad they've ever done to you.
  • The more time you can spend away from the person you love, the easier a time you'll have learning to stop loving them. Given the choice between being slightly rude or bowing to your love's wishes and torturing yourself instead, go with the rudeness. You've got to “look out for number one” first.


  • Don't spy on your ex or past love. It'll only reopen the wounds you've been trying to heal.
  • Don't speak ill of the person you're trying to get over. If you simply must, do it in private to a person you can trust, such as a parent or therapist. Spreading bitterness around will only make things worse for you in the long run.

Article Info

Categories: Former Relationships