The poets write of it.
The singers sing of it.
Romeo experienced it with Rosaline.
Juliet experienced it with Paris.
It’s the classic case of wanting what you can’t have. A superficial and passive kind of love.
I experienced a few moments of unrequited love in my teens. You know how the story goes. Nerdy features editor of the school paper falls for the monosyllabic captain of the football team. She dreams of being swept up in his big, strong muscular arms; he dreams of her doing his English homework, free, for an entire year.
The thing with unrequited love is that usually it ends. With a crash. We see the light steadily shining in our faces. In my case it happened when I couldn’t convince the footballer that onomatopoeia didn’t involve actual peeing on a mat. It was all over for me at that point.
But sometimes unrequited love doesn’t end as it should. And a situation develops that is fraught with problems.
One of my husband’s friends has a crush on me. He is single and has been ever since I’ve known him. When I first heard about the crush (told to me by a mutual friend) I was flattered but didn’t really think any more of it. I thought it was one of those things that people say sort of in a joking way when they find someone else attractive but have no intention of taking it any further.
The problem is that this guy has taken it further in a kind of creepy way. For a while he would pop over unannounced when he knew my husband wasn’t in. He has always been quite respectful – no sleazy remarks or anything like that but he has been what I would refer to as overly attentive.
Then there are the emails and the phone calls. Enough to feel like I’m being pestered. Many of which contain inappropriate content for a single guy talking to a married woman.
I have quite a few close male friends and one of the things I like about them is that we can be great mates regardless of our gender and there’s never any hint of anything sexual or otherwise. I think it’s a mark of immaturity and lack of sensitivity when a man makes a nuisance of himself in that way with a woman whom he knows is married. And who is not encouraging him in any way.
The whole thing was really beginning to bother me so I told my husband about it. He already knew about the pop ins and had been instrumental in stopping them, but the emails led to a blow-up between he and his supposed friend and they are not talking at the moment.
I’m annoyed that it has come to this. It’s fine to admire someone from afar but when you actively try and influence the way they feel about you it can only end in tears.
Unrequited love. It’s the stuff of soap operas and teenage fantasies. Sometimes you just have to grow up.