Why Does Rejection By Your Crush Hurt So Much

Crushes are beautiful. Sometimes even more beautiful than relationships themselves. They remind you of a perfect world; two lovers existing in a blissful modern-day fairytale; no disagreements, no jealousies, no tiffs. They say the best thing you can do to your love is to never marry them. In English poetry, the concept of the unattainable mistress has been very popular. The languishing lover, usually the poet, pines for the love of the icy beloved who doesn’t give a hoot about him.

Something similar happens in real life too, even though we may not realise it. Crushes are very often one-sided, more often than we’d like them to be. And this probably is not gender specific; it ails both men and women equally. The reasons could be many—perhaps you are not yourself in front of them; perhaps you two are very different people (a fact responsible for you liking them but also for them not noticing you).

Stealing glances at them; butterflies in the stomach when they come to talk to you, stalking them on Facebook are just the first sensations of love we feel. And they are often so overwhelming, often orgasmic in their headiness that everything else fades into oblivion. Overcome by that feeling, you can never be yourself in their presence. Perhaps you fall silent, perhaps you falter; hopefully you just don’t grin from ear to ear in their presence; you are too busy admiring them, basking in the warm glow of love. Or sometimes you are too chatty, too close for comfort, always available, always the guy staring.

They say we always like someone who we think is better than us or is out of our league—more good-looking, smarter, more successful. While that’s somewhat true about infatuation and the outward signs could confirm that, truth is we often take a liking to someone when we see in them what we desire in life. You may be able to see something in someone that the rest of the world can’t. You like the fact that she can stand up for herself; you like it that she can be so empathetic towards people; nobody else notices it but you do. You value those traits; maybe they come naturally to her but for you, they matter enough to make you fall in love with her. Her parameters of love could be different.

They say opposites attract, and that is one of the first laws of attraction, but it doesn’t guarantee a relationship. You love the way she laughs easily and heartily, something you never do. You love the way she brings life to every gathering. You are in awe of her. But will she be in love with you? Maybe yes, maybe not. She might not notice you, she might never get to know you, considering you don’t talk much. Often it ends as a one-sided feeling.

And then the hurt starts. The self-introspection, the self-blame, the embarrassment. You have to realise it didn’t happen because one of the two of you is better but because you are two very different people. If your natures are different, then your worlds are different, your friends are different, your tastes are different. Love doesn’t happen easily in such cases. A crush is like a beautiful rose bush; let it be, let it bloom away in the distance; don’t try to own it, don’t struggle too much to make it your own or you might ruin it forever. If it’s meant to happen, the wind will carry the fragrance to you.

Why It Hurts So Bad

So when our crush doesn’t reciprocate our feelings, why is it that we are left heart-broken? Have we fallen so in love with that person that we can’t imagine a life without them? Or do we think they were the one? And it couldn’t have been anyone better? But in reality, we grieve not over a lost love but over a hurt ego and a ‘what if’. They rejected us. They did not choose us. They did not develop a liking for us. We failed to entice them, to make them fall in love with us. We see it as a personal failure. At the end of the day, it’s not about them; it’s about us.

We all have insecurities and it’s perfectly okay to have them. Those very insecurities are brought to the fore when someone rejects us. Maybe it’s the hair; or if I had been a little taller; or if I were a tad wittier…the list never ends.

And then there are the what ifs. What if were perfect for each other? What if we got on like a house on fire? What if she secretly liked me? What if she was the one? Could we have been soulmates? The uncertainty is killing. The regret sharp. When it’s a crush that fails to materialize, you can never know. Whereas, in a relationship that eventually fades away, two people have gone through the process of falling out of love. They have tried and they have failed. They have spent good times and they have spent bad times. They have seen each other’s ugly.

But when your crush walks away, you are still head over heels over them. They still make your heart skip a beat. You are still in the most beautiful phase of falling in love—the one where you get tingly sensations in the stomach on seeing them. You did not get a chance to try it out and see if it worked or not. You did not get a chance to grow out of the heady feeling. And that’s why it hurts.

But, of course, it’s a phase that’s short-lived. When a crush fails, the pain is sharp but quick. Like a bandage being ripped off. As soon as we realize that all the hurt is within us, it’s very easy to get out of it. It’s the ego you’ve to nurse. It’s the hope you’ve to rekindle. Because there will be many more, many who like you. You will not miss the person. You will even forget their name. But you’ll nurse that heady feeling, that capacity to like someone so wholeheartedly and purely. As they say, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder and you are a person who is beautiful enough to find beauty. Cherish that. You’ll always find it.

Scraps : The End

You were an unpleasant memory; and now you are my reminder.
You’re my reminder to be more cautious of the people I invest my time in. You’re my reminder to see people for who they are and not for who I want them to be. You’re my reminder to fall in love with how people treat me, not what they tell me. But if by chance I do fall for the wrong person again, you are my reminder that I can survive the worst.

I Wish I Could Tell You

It’s been a while
since I finally accepted
the end.
But my heart still aches
everytime I think
of how we ended.
And if I could go back,
I wish I could tell you:
I stayed for so long,
not because I was weak
but because I believed
in the good person in you.
And I left, not because
you stopped wanting me,
but because I no longer
loved myself by loving you.

Happy Birthday, Brother!

Day 19

You know, ever since childhood, I always wanted a sibling. I’d see my friends with siblings in school, who’d talk about how they played together and did fun stuff, or maybe fought over a little toy, and I’d always wonder what it would be like to have a brother. To have someone to call your own. Someone you can share your secrets with, someone who you can call up in times of distress, and most importantly, someone you can trust to be on your side through the odds and evens of life.

I call you brother because that’s what you are for me. My brother from another mother.

And we go a long way back, don’t we? And now that I stop for a moment and reflect back on the past, the days bygone, I can’t somehow manage to recollect the first day we met. It’s like we’ve always been friends, only the friendship strengthened after a point in time.

You’ve been one heck of a guy right from the start. One of my earliest associations in college, you came in as a whiff of fresh air amongst the several other wannabe-suave guys that crowded our department. I’d introspected on it a lot, on what is it really about you that makes you so effortless. So simple. And from what I’ve seen of you in the past two and a half years, it’s been one of the greatest lessons of my life – when the world is running after abstraction, you are exceptionally uncomplicated.

I can’t help but think at this moment how would my life be without you. I know there are other friends, but none like you, who knows every detail of me. Nobody knows which the right words in the right time are like you do. We’ve laughed at each other, and we’ve laughed with each other and I can’t thank you enough for everything that you’ve done for me, for standing with me in times when I needed you to, for making me feel good, for not being judgmental with all my nuisances, and for extending the mental support that you do.
I know I don’t open up as much, but I think your birthday is the perfect moment to tell you all that I don’t in a normal day, to extend my gratitude, and to tell you how important you are to me.

On this day, I wish you prosperity and greatness, health and wisdom, and I pray you get all that you crave and succeed in every endeavour you undertake. I wish you a very happy birthday.

Love
Your Friend

Scraps 2.3

Day 18

I don’t like talking on the phone with you. And I’ll always tell you that it’s because I hate my voice.
I don’t like video conferences, and I’ll always tell you that it’s because I hate how the video and audio never sync properly because of my horrible internet connection.
The only reason we text is because I don’t quite want to go a day without your presence around me.
But if I were to be brutally true to you, I don’t like the phone because it reduces you to sound waves, and I don’t like video because it reduces you to pixels on my tiny screen, and it bothers me that I can’t feel you, touch you, smell you, or know you’re, in the simplest of terms, alive, and metabolizing next to me, because when we’re together, between us, in quiet symphony, even the absolute stillness speaks.

Scraps 5.0

Day 14

It always has a pattern. You meet a great person. You become friends with them. Then come the late night conversations. Finally you confess your love. Not to the said person of course, but to your best friend. Then days go by tearing the petals of a freshly plucked flower called love. And you finally make the all-important confession. And if you are lucky, your love is reciprocated.

But for how long? Maybe a few months. After that it all comes crashing down in a whirlwind of misplaced emotions. If both of you agree that you have somehow fallen out of that love that a week back you thought was irreplaceable while lying in bed, then you are doomed with being just friends for the rest of your lives. If it’s not consensual then one of you leaves scarred, the shadow of which falls on your next irreplaceable love. Regardless how it ends, you leave a part of yourself back to where you thought you will always belong.

But when you somehow think that you have lasted long enough for both of you to be together forever, wake up in each others’ arms every morning for the rest of your lives and do all the things that cute posts on Instagram ask you to do for you to be a perfect couple, then why is it that you still have a figment of emotion left in your head that doubts your significant other and constantly tries to hinder your perfect love life with your perfect person? Is it just the jealousy that other people get to spend more time with that person you thought will forever have your undivided attention or is it because you still do not know if your love is same as the one that your friends have who seem to move on to a next every few months? Whatever it may be, it is certain to wreak havoc in your perfect home. Doubt is something that does not let you rest. It eats you from the inside because you know that the moment you show it, it spells doom.

Why can you not doubt and just stay the way you were when the relationship began and it seemed like neither of you could get enough of each other? Why is it that doubt always results in you deciding to leave the person with whom till a few days back you thought you will have two kids in a nice house with a dog to give you company while the kids are out to play? Why can you not fight the doubt? Worse, why can you not fight the doubt together? Is your love not strong enough to defeat a puny figment of emotion that is swept under the carpet in a dark corner of your brain where you do not even want to go? Because when you have something that you cherish, something that makes you so happy that you do not mind growing old anymore, do not mind leaving people you care about just because you care about this person the most, it something you keep and not something you let go off. You fight for it. You make it live. Because always remember that the night when you had hugged her, you had thought that that place was the best place in this world and that place will never change. Come what may. It may get lost but there is nothing that is lost which cannot be found. There is no love that is ever lost. It is just two people who do not want to try hard enough.

A Letter To Nobody

Day 11

So, I’m quite certain that I shouldn’t send this email because you’ll probably think that I’m a crazy person and kick me to the curb, but oh well. I’m bored and can’t sleep due to waking up about an hour ago thanks to a lovely dream wherein you made yet another appearance in the theatre of my mind.

I am not the type who places any stock in dreams, or thinks that they have any deep meaning. More likely it’s just my brain struggling to make sense of all the random shit that I conjure up during the day in this boiling cauldron that is my subconscious.

This dream however, was interesting, in the sense that I don’t recall having any thought about this certain subject in relation to you, at least not in a very long time. Its been more like I’ve just assumed the combo of our rapidly advancing ages, your aspirations, and our apparent contentment with being alone would make this an impossibility, so I haven’t even bothered to contemplate it. Yet, there you were, carrying my baby.

The first flash of you in such a state was of some intimate moment between the two of us, each laying on our sides, facing each other in a bed I didn’t recognize. We were naked, but it wasn’t a sexual thing. More so it was the comfortable nakedness that only two longtime lovers could share. We were laying there, simply talking, as our heads rested on our respective pillows. For some reason it was hard to take our eyes off of each other as we talked, maybe there was just no other place worth looking in our minimalistic themed bedroom? Or perhaps our respective faces were the best possible thing we could each imagine getting to drink in to start the day? I know for me, yours has always been better than a cup of coffee. Although, for you….I know you’d definitely choose your Morning Joe over my mug every single time. Nonetheless, drink we did.

The Saturday morning light sliced through a crack in our bedroom curtains and lit up your smile even more so than usual. Now, I don’t remember what inane topic we were babbling on about, but what is important is that as you smiled, I laughed, and while doing so I reached my left hand out and placed it on your side, resting on that smooth curve just below your ribs that leads ever so gracefully towards your hips. My fingers gently traced their way down your silky skin, and it was suddenly quiet, save for the chirping of some random bird in our backyard. You still looked into my eyes, you still smiled, but your topic of conversation had faded away into irrelevance, you placed your right hand on mine and gently moved it down towards your swollen navel.

“Feel her?” You said, “She’s kicking again, this one is gonna be fiesty.”
“So, just like her mom then?” I replied, with a smirk.
You nodded…

And then I awoke.