22 Of The Greatest, Most POWERFUL Quotes On Unrequited Love

Unrequited Love Quotes

"There's nothing so mortifying as to fall in love with someone who does not share one's sentiments."

"I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be." So says Pip of the disinterested but beautiful Estella in Great Expectations. Personally, I thought Pip was a huge idiot. Estella was a looker, I guess, but there wasn't a grain of wit in what must have been a body nice enough to distract from a lack of worthwhile qualities. (I mean, how can your aunt be Miss Havisham and you not develop at least a dark sense of humor?)

That Dickens quote is one of the most-oft cited ones on unrequited love. But like Estella, it leaves me a little cold. Here are some possibly less well-trod love quotes on loving someone who doesn't love you back (or being loved by someone you don't feel it for).

1. "There is nothing so mortifying as to fall in love with someone who does not share one's sentiments." ―Georgette Heyer, Venetia

2. "I want him to see the flowers in my eyes and hear the songs in my hands." ―Francesca Lia Block, Dangerous Angels

3. "The knowledge that she would never be loved in return acted upon her ideas as a tide acts upon cliffs." ―Thornton Wilder, The Bridge of San Luis Rey

4. "You have never loved me as I love you — never never! Yours is not a passionate heart — your heart does not burn in a flame! You are, upon the whole, a sort of fay, or sprite  not a woman!" ―Thomas Hardy, Jude the Obscure

5. "Thus much and more; and yet thou lov'st me not,
And never wilt! Love dwells not in our will.
Nor can I blame thee, though it be my lot
To strongly, wrongly, vainly love thee still."
 ―Lord Byron, final verse of "Love and Death"

6. "To want and not to have, sent all up her body a hardness, a hollowness, a strain. And then to want and not to have  to want and want  how that wrung the heart, and wrung it again and again!" Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse

7. "And then it happens, the most dreaded response in the world, more terse than any word, more withholding than a no, and strictly verboten for someone as in love with language and me as you claim to be. You: K." ― Caroline Kepnes, You

8. "Unrequited love is so boring. Weeping under a blue-black sky is for suckers or maniacs." ―Alice Hoffman, Practical Magic

9. "With women who do not love us, as with the "dear departed," the knowledge that there is no hope left does not prevent us from continuing to wait." ―Marcel Proust, In the Shadow of Young Girls in Flower

10. "The sun's gone dim, and
The moon's turned black;
For I loved him, and
He didn't love back."
 ―Dorothy Parker, collected poems

11. "She had the look in her eye when you kick and kick at the door and it doesn't open, when you write a boy letters and letters and he never loves you, not 'til the day he dies. Not even then." ―Daniel Handler, The Basic Eight

12. "I never expected you to love me, I didn't see any reason that you should. I never thought myself very lovable. I was thankful to be allowed to love you and I was enraptured when now and then I thought you were pleased with me or when I noticed in your eyes a gleam of good-humored affection. I tried not to bore you with my love; I knew I couldn't afford to do that and I was always on the lookout for the first sign that you were impatient with my affection." ―W. Somerset Maugham, The Painted Veil

13. "Love may have the longest arms, but it can still fall short of an embrace." ―Megan McCafferty, Charmed Thirds

14. "Why should I blame her that she filled my days
With misery, or that she would of late
Have taught to ignorant men most violent ways,
Or hurled the little streets upon the great,
Had they but courage equal to desire?
What could have made her peaceful with a mind
That nobleness made simple as a fire,
With beauty like a tightened bow, a kind
That is not natural in an age like this,
Being high and solitary and most stern?
Why, what could she have done, being what she is?
Was there another Troy for her to burn?"
 ―William Butler Yeats, "No Second Troy"

15. "Too many of us are hung up on what we don't have, can't have, or won't ever have. We spend too much energy being down, when we could use that same energy if not less of it doing, or at least trying to do, some of the things we really want to do." ―Terry McMillan, Disappearing Acts

16. "As long as you're neurotic and crazy, he's great. But once he solves all your problems, he becomes the problem." ―Candace Bushnell, Sex and the City

17. "When you give someone your whole heart and he doesn't want it, you cannot take it back. It's gone forever." ―Sylvia Plath to a friend, as quoted by Janet Malcolm in The Silent Woman

18. "The worst thing: to give yourself away in exchange for not enough love." ―Joyce Carol Oates, "Death Mother"

19. "The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same person." Chuck Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters

20. "How do you make yourself not like someone?" ―Louise Rennison, Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging

21. "Living with someone you love can be lonelier than living entirely alone, if the one that you love doesn't love you."Tennessee Williams, "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof"

22. "'Do people always fall in love with things they can't have?'
'Always,' Carol said, smiling, too."
 ―Patricia Highsmith, The Price of Salt


If you're searching for the best quotes and memes to share with the people you love (or just want to feel inspired yourself) ... look no further! From the sweetest love quotes, inspirational sayings, and hilarious relationship truths, we've got you covered.



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