75 Heartbreaking Songs About Unrequited Love

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75 Best Songs About Unrequited Love

Unrequited love isn't something anyone wants to experience, and the best songs about unrequited love prove just that. Unfortunately, life and love do not allow us to make our own rules.

Pouring your whole heart out to someone is probably the most vulnerable and nerve-wracking feeling to experience. Not only are you putting your heart on your sleeve, but you're openly admitting to someone how much you care about them.

Sometimes there is a happy ending that many of us strive for. The sweet moment they grab you by the waist and say, "Where have you been all my life?" That is what we all want, isn't it?

But sometimes we get the complete opposite. Let me set up a little story for you...

Heather works in a busy office that forces her to work almost all-day in her cubicle. The only time she steps out is for an occasional stroll to her work bestie's desk and to the snack room to grab a quick bite. She notices a new, unfamiliar face in the break room one day and my gosh, is he the closest looking person to Leonardo DiCaprio. Of course, Heather's mind goes crazy and everything in her is saying to shoot her shot and talk to him.

Success! The two hit it off in the office and exchange numbers. A text and call here and there, Heather has no idea how she pulled this off.

A few months in, and a couple of dates and kisses later, Heather sums up the courage to admit to Leo Jr. that he is the man for her and only her. Unfortunately, he not interested.

How could he not feel the same way she did? But hey, that's just how the cookie crumbles sometimes. Not everyone we meet is going to feel the same way we do, no matter how bad we want thing to be different.

Maybe you've been in homegirl's shoes before. I'm sure after this whole situation, you'd go home and ball your eyes out. Or maybe you're like me, who uses music to solve all of life's annoyances.

RELATED: How To Deal With (And Get Over) The Painful Rejection Of Unrequited Love

Unrequited love is a genre in itself in the music world.

With hundreds of hits and classics, we've curating a list of the best songs about unrequited love to get you through this heartbreaking time.

1. "Bad Religion" by Frank Ocean

Oh, unrequited love
To me, it's nothin' but a one-man cult
And cyanide in my styrofoam cup
I can never make them love me
Never make 'em love me
No, no, ah

2. "Charleville 9200 Pt 2" by Snoh Aalegra

How we go from famous to being complete strangers?
Help me understand, it wasn't in my plans
Under the stars, Charleville, you were mine
We fell in love, thought it was weird, but I
Guess I was wrong to feel alone, you were with me
In my favorite city, Paris don't feel the same

3. "Little Bit (Remix)" by Lykke Li ft. Drake

Hands down, I'm too proud for love
But with eyes shut, it's you I'm thinkin' of
But how we move from A to B, it can't be up to me
'Cause you don't know, who I was before you
And basically, to see a change in me
I'd be losing, so I just ignore you, yeah
Oh, but you're on my mind

4. "Heartless" by Kanye West

How could you be so, cold as the winter wind when it breeze, yo
Just remember that you talkin' to me though
You know need to watch the way you talkin' to me, yo
I mean after all the things that we've been through
I mean after all the things we got into
Hey yo, I know of some things that you ain't told me
Hey yo, I did some things but that's the old me

5. "Teardrops On My Guitar" by Taylor Swift

He's the reason for the teardrops on my guitar,
The only thing that keeps me wishing on a wishing star,
He's the song in the car I keep singing, don't know why I do

6. "Not In That Way" by Sam Smith

And I hate to say I love you
When it's so hard for me
And I hate to say I want you
When you make it so clear
You don't want me

7. "You Sent Me Flying" by Amy Winehouse

And although my pride is not easy to disturb, yeah
You sent me flying when you kicked me to the curb
With your battered jeans and your Beasties tee
Now I can't work like this, with you next to me

8. "Shiver" by Coldplay

So I look in your direction
But you pay me no attention, do you
I know you don't listen to me
'Cause you say you see straight through me, don't you

9. "One and Only" by Adele

I dare you to let me be your, your one and only
I promise I'm worthy
To hold in your arms
So come on and give me the chance
To prove I am the one who can walk that mile
Until the end starts

10. "Tiny Vessels" by Death Cab for Cutie

This is the moment that you know
That you told you loved her but you don't.
You touch her skin and then you think
That she is beautiful but she don't mean a thing to me.
Yeah, she is beautiful, but she don't mean a thing to me

RELATED: 23 Best Love Songs About Falling For Your Best Friend

11. "You Don't Know Me" by Ray Charles

You give your hand to me
And then you say hello
And I can hardly speak
My heart is beating so
And anyone can tell
You think you know me well
But you don't know me (no you don't know me)

12. "I'm Not That Girl" from Wicked The Musical, sung by Idina Menzel

But I'm not that girl
Don't dream too far
Don't lose sight of who you are
Don't remember that rush of joy
He could be that boy
I'm not that girl

13. "Need Ur Love" by Charli XCX

Boy, you really messed around
Put me six feet underground
Always kick me when I'm down
But I'm still driving through your town

14. "Anything Could Happen" by Ellie Goulding

After the war, we said we'd fight together
I guess we thought that's just what humans do
Letting darkness grow
As if we need it's palette and we need its color
But now I've seen it through
And now I know the truth

15. "If" by Janet Jackson

Sittin over here
Starin in your face
With lust in my eyes
Sure don't give a damn and ya
Don't know that I've been dreaming of ya in
My fantasies
Never once you looked at me
Don't even realize that I'm wanting you
To fulfill my needs
Think what you want
Let your mind free
Run free to a place no one dares to

16. "Jar of Hearts" by Christina Perri

Who do you think you are?
Runnin' 'round leaving scars
Collecting your jar of hearts
And tearing love apart
You're gonna catch a cold
From the ice inside your soul
So don't come back for me
Who do you think you are?

17. "Creep" by Radiohead

When you were here before
Couldn't look you in the eye
You're just like an angel
Your skin makes me cry
You float like a feather
In a beautiful world
I wish I was special
You're so fuckin' special

18. "Stephen" by Kesha

I've got guys waiting in the line for me too play
My evil girly games with all their minds
Just watch me I've got it down
To a simple art just bat my eyes
Like this
And there's a broken heart
But somehow you turn the tables, what the hell?
I can charm the pants of anyone else
But you

19. "Waiting in Vain" by Bob Marley

I don't wanna wait in vain for your love
I don't wanna wait in vain for your love
From the very first time I rest my eyes on you, girl
My heart says follow t'rough
But I know, now, that I'm way down on your line
But the waitin' feel is fine
So don't treat me like a puppet on a string
'Cause I know I have to do my thing

20. "Could've Been" by H.E.R. ft. Bryson Tiller

We could've been
And we try to pretend
Every now and again
We don't dream about, don't think about what
We could've been
Though I'm holding again
'Cause I know in the end
You dream about, I think about what
We could've been

RELATED: 22 Of The Greatest, Most Powerful Quotes About Unrequited Love

21. "Feel a Way" by H.E.R.

Crazy but you made me like that
2 AM I thought you were on the way
It's your fault, I played my part
Don't start that talk like, you ain't planned to stay

22. "Notion" by Tash Sultana

Tell your mother, she don't understand
Tell your mother, she's not listening
Why don't you tear my heart
The chain is made of string
I roll the dice
You seal the deal
That don't matter
Cause pain will heal
I will follow you
Into the dark

23. "Chasing Pavements" by Adele

Should I give up
Or should I just keep chasing pavements?
Even if it leads nowhere
Or would it be a waste?
Even If I knew my place should I leave it there?
Should I give up
Or should I just keep chasing pavements?
Even if it leads nowhere

24. "Lost Boy" by JADEN

You're all alone
Does she love you, you'll never know
Our love virtues, forever on
'Til she kills my soul
You're all that I'll know
You're all alone
Does she love you, you'll never know
Our love virtues, forever on
'Til she kills my soul
You're all that I'll know

25. "Bleeding Love" by Leona Lewis

Closed off from love, I didn't need the pain
Once or twice was enough, but it was all in vain
Time starts to pass before you know it, you're frozen
But something happened, for the very first time with you
My heart melts into the ground, found something true
And everyone's looking around, thinking I'm going crazy

26. "Grenade" by Bruno Mars

Gave you all I had and you tossed it in the trash
You tossed it in the trash, you did
To give me all your love is all I ever asked 'cause
What you don't understand is I'd catch a grenade for ya (yeah, yeah)
Throw my hand on a blade for ya (yeah, yeah)
I'd jump in front of a train for ya (yeah, yeah)
You know I'd do anything for ya (yeah, yeah)

27. "Better Now" by Post Malone

You probably think that you are better now, better now
You only say that 'cause I'm not around, not around
You know I never meant to let you down, let you down
Woulda gave you anything, woulda gave you everything
You know I say that I am better now, better now
I only say that 'cause you're not around, not around

28. "I Won't Give Up" by Jason Mraz

And in the end, you're still my friend at least we did intend
For us to work we didn't break, we didn't burn
We had to learn how to bend without the world caving in
I had to learn what I've got, and what I'm not
And who I am

29. "The Motion" by Drake

Lookin' back on it, at least my pride is intact
'Cause we said no strings attached and I still got tied up in that
Everything that I write is either for her or about her
So I'm with her even when I'm here without her and she know it
The girl that I wanna save is like a danger to my health
Try bein' with somebody that wanna be somebody else
I always thought she was perfect when she was bein' herself
Don't even know how to help

30. "I Can't Make You Love Me" by Bonnie Raitt

'Cause I can't make you love me if you don't
You can't make your heart feel something it won't
Here in the dark, in these final hours
I will lay down my heart and I'll feel the power
But you won't, no you won't
'Cause I can't make you love me, if you don't

RELATED: If You’ve Ever Loved Someone Who Didn’t Love You Back, You Need To Hear This

31. "Catalina" by Rosalía

Quítate de mi presencia, que me estás martirizando
Quítate de mi presencia, que me estás martirizando
Ya la memoria me trae cosas que estaba olviando
Ya la memoria me trae cosas que estaba olviando

English translation:

Get away from my sight because you are tormenting me
Get away from my sight because you are tormenting me
And bring back memories that I had forgotten
And bring back memories that I had forgotten

32. "Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover" by Sophie B. Hawkins

Damn I wish I was your lover
I'll rock you till the daylight comes
Make sure you are smiling and warm
I am everything
Tonight I'll be your mother I will
Do such things to ease your pain
Free your mind and you won't feel ashamed

33. "Nothin' On You" by B.O.B. ft. Bruno Mars

I know you feel where I'm coming from
Regardless of the things in my past that I've done
Most of it really was for the hell of the fun
On the carousel so around I spun (Spun)
With no directions, just tryna get some (Some)
Tryna chase skirts, living in the summer sun (Sun)
An' so I lost more than I had ever won
And honestly, I ended up with none

34. "It's Oh so Quiet" by Bjork

You fall in love
Zing boom
The sky up above
Zing boom
Is caving in
Wow bam
You've never been so nuts about a guy
You want to laugh you want to cry
You cross your heart and hope to die

35. "Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic" by The Police

Though I've tried before to tell her
Of the feelings, I have for her in my heart
Every time that I come near her
I just lose my nerve
As I've done from the start

36. "Just My Imagination" by The Temptations

Each day through my window I watch her as she passes by
I say to myself you're such a lucky guy
To have a girl like her is truly a dream come true
Out of all the fellows in the world, she belongs to me
But it was just my imagination
Once again runnin' away with me

37. "Just a Friend" by Biz Markie

Have you ever met a girl that you tried to date
But a year to make love she wanted you to wait?
Let me tell ya a story of my situation
I was talkin' to this girl from the U.S. nation
The way that I met her was on tour, at a concert
She had long hair and a short miniskirt
I just got on stage, drippin', pourin' with sweat
I was walkin' through the crowd and guess who I met

38. "Stay" by Rihanna ft. Mikky Ekko

Not really sure how to feel about it
Something in the way you move
Makes me feel like I can't live without you
It takes me all the way
I want you to stay

39. "Laugh, I Nearly Died" by The Rolling Stones

I've been traveling but I don't know where
I've been missing you but you just don't care
And I've been wandering, I've seen Greece and Rome
Lost in the wilderness, so far from home
Yeah, yeah

40. "Jessie's Girl" by Rick Springfield

I play along with the charade
There doesn't seem to be a reason to change
You know, I feel so dirty when they start talking cute
I wanna tell her that I love her
But the point is probably moot

RELATED: The 50 Best Songs About Loving Yourself

41. "One for My Baby" by Frank Sinatra

I've got the routine
Put another nickel in the machine
I'm feeling so bad
Can't you make the music easy and sad
I could tell you a lot
But you've gotta be true to your code
Just make it one for my baby, and one more
For the road

42. "Dancing on My Own" by Robyn

Somebody said you got a new friend
Does she love you better than I can?
It's a big black sky over my town
I know where you at, I bet she's around
Yeah, I know it's stupid
I just gotta see it for myself

43. "Cry for You" by September

I never had to say goodbye
You must have known I wouldn't stay
While you were talking about our life
You killed the beauty of today
Forever and ever
Life is now or never
Forever never comes around

44. "Always On Your Side" by Sheryl Crow ft. Sting

Well everything was easy then, so sweet and innocent
But your demons and your angels reappeared
Leavin' all the traces of the man you thought you'd be
Leavin' me with no place left to go from here
Leavin' me so many questions all these years

45. "Black" by Pearl Jam

Sheets of empty canvas, untouched sheets of clay
Were laid spread out before me as her body once did
All five horizons revolved around her soul as the earth to the sun
Now the air I tasted and breathed has taken a turn, ooh
And all I taught her was everything
Ooh, I know she gave me all that she wore

46. "Amorfoda" by Bad Bunny

No quiero que más nadie me hable de amor
Ya me cansé, to' esos trucos ya me los sé
Esos dolores los pasé, yeh, yeh, yeh

English translation:

I don't want anyone to talk to me about love anymore
I'm tired of it, I know all those tricks already
I already went through those pains, yeah yeah

47. "Jaded" by Drake

Yes, I'm hurting, yes, I'm jaded (jaded)
Most of these things I don't wanna say (jaded)
I wanna be around while you chasin' (while you chasin' it)
You wanna hit me up when you make it
You'll try and come back when you famous
I always want the truth, but it's dangerous (dangerous, oh)
You got somethin' real, not basic (ooh, yeah)
You wanna get with me, stop

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48. "Sorry" by Maria Mena

I just poured my heart out
There's bits of it on the floor
And I take what's left of it and rinse it under cold water
And call him up for more

49. "I Want The One I Can't Have" by The Smiths

I want the one I can't have
And it's driving me mad
It's all over, all over, all over my face

50. "Cornerstone" by Arctic Monkeys

I thought I saw you in the battleship
But it was only a look a like
She was nothing but a vision trick
Under the warning light
She was close, close enough to be your ghost
But my chances turned to toast
When I asked her if I could call her your name

RELATED: The Real (Sad) Reason We Cling So Hard To Unrequited Love

51. "Black Clouds" by Andrew Belle

Who would have ever thought of it
Autumn, it pulls apart
Primary colors that we know by heart
So what's the rush for?
If it's good, it never goes away
Or was that just something that we used to say
Used to say

52. "Ain't No Way" by Aretha Franklin

Stop trying to be
Someone you're not
Hard, cold and cruel is a man
Who paid too much for what he got
And if you need me
Like you say, say you do
Oh then please, please
Please don't you know that I need you?

53. "He Needs Me" by Nina Simone

He needs me
I ought to leave him, but he needs me
I know that I ain't very bright
Just to tag along
Oh, but right or wrong
I'm his and I'm here
And I'm gonna be his friends or his lover

54. "Love Is a Losing Game" by Amy Winehouse

For you, I was the flame
Love is a losing game
Five-story fire as you came
Love is losing game
One I wished, I never played
Oh, what a mess we made
And now the final frame
Love is a losing game

55. "Rocket Love" by Stevie Wonder

You took me riding in your rocket, gave me a star
But at a half a mile from heaven, you dropped me back
Down to this cold, cold world
Took me riding in your rocket, gave me a star
But at a half a mile from heaven, you dropped me back
Down to this cold, cold world

56. "Just A Friend To You" by Meghan Trainor

When you say I'm just a friend to you
'Cause friends don't do the things we do
Everybody knows you love me too
Tryna be careful with the words I use
I say it 'cause I'm dying to
I'm so much more than just a friend to you

57. "Gorgeous" by Taylor Swift

You should take it as a compliment
That I got drunk and made fun of the way you talk
You should think about the consequence
Of your magnetic field being a little too strong
And I got a boyfriend, he's older than us
He's in the club doing, I don't know what
You're so cool, it makes me hate you so much

58. "Call Out My Name" by The Weeknd

We found each other
I helped you out of a broken place
You gave me comfort
But falling for you was my mistake
I put you on top, I put you on top
I claimed you so proud and openly
And when times were rough, when times were rough
I made sure I held you close to me

59. "Without Me" by Halsey

Found you when your heart was broke
I filled your cup until it overflowed
Took it so far to keep you close (keep you close)
I was afraid to leave you on your own

60. "Memphis" by Justin Bieber ft. Diplo & Big Sean

I'd like to give you what you need
I try but you're makin' it hard for me
How do I make you believe?
'Cause I love you, need you, need you here to stay

RELATED: 50 Songs About Forbidden Love & The Relatable Lyrics That Speak Right To Your Heart

61. "Liability" by Lorde

Baby really hurt me
Crying in the taxi
He don't wanna know me
Says he made the big mistake of dancing in my storm
Says it was poison
So I guess I'll go home
Into the arms of the girl that I love
The only love I haven't screwed up
She's so hard to please
But she's a forest fire

62. "Tears" by Clean Bandit ft. Louisa Johnson

I tried hard to make you want me
But we're not supposed to be
And the truth will always haunt me
Even though it set me free
And my tears flow like the ocean
As they floated in the breeze
They were falling in slow motion
And they brought me to my knees

63. "I'm a Mess" by Beba Rexha

I'm a mess, I'm a loser
I'm a hater, I'm a user
I'm a mess for your love, it ain't new
I'm obsessed, I'm embarrassed
I don't trust no one around us
I'm a mess for your love, it ain't new

64. "Everything You Want" by Vertical Horizon

Somewhere there's speaking
It's already coming in
Oh and it's rising at the back of your mind
You never could get it
Unless you were fed it
Now you're here and you don't know why

65. "To Be With You" by Mr. Big

I'm the one who wants to be with you
Deep inside I hope you feel it too (feel it too)
Waited on a line of greens and blues (waited on a line)
Just to be the next to be with you

66. "Love Stinks" by The J. Geils Band

You love her
But she loves him
And he loves somebody else
You just can't win
And so it goes
Till the day you die
This thing they call love
It's gonna make you cry

67. "All To Myself" by Marianas Trench

Did you say please just follow me?
I thought you wanted me.
'Cause I want you all to myself.
I can try to suck it up,
I just can't suck it up.
Make me feel like some one else

68. "Layla" by Eric Clapton and Jim Gordon with Derek and The Dominoes

What'll you do when you get lonely
And nobody's waiting by your side?
You've been running and hiding much too long
You know it's just your foolish pride
Layla, you've got me on my knees
Layla, I'm begging, darling please
Layla, darling won't you ease my worried mind

69. "Crush" by Mandy Moore

You know, I'm the one that you can talk to
And sometimes you tell me things that I don't want to know
I just want to hold you
And you say exactly how you feel about her
And I wonder, could you ever think of me that way

70. "Call Me Maybe" by Carly Rae Jepsen

I threw a wish in the well
Don't ask me I'll never tell
I looked at you as it fell
And now you're in my way
I'd trade my soul for a wish
Pennies and dimes for a kiss
I wasn't looking for this
But now you're in my way

71. "Damn Good Friends" by Elle Varner

Thought I’d
Slide past the walls of your heart like
You’re from the fly taking my time
Before revealing my
True intention
But you’re so impossible to suggest
You like us just the way we is
Please pardon me for my interjection

72. "Put You In A Song" by Keith Urban

Well here you come again and you're lookin' so fine
You don't notice me but it's alright
I'm just a guy who wishes that I could be your man someday
Yeah a picture paints a thousand words it's true
But it's still not enough for how I feel about you
I wanna put you in a melody, I gotta set you to a groove

73. "Can't Fight This Feeling" by REO Speedwagon

I can't fight this feeling any longer
And yet I'm still afraid to let it flow
What started out as friendship has grown stronger
I only wish I had the strength to let it show

74. "Closer Than You Might Believe" by Alanis Morisette

So if the love that you're chasing after
Is in the heart to be found in the out of reach
Well, if you break it all down
Take a good look around, you'd see
That it's closer than you might believe

75. "Why Don't You Love Me" by Beyoncé

Why don't you love me?
Tell me, baby, why don't you love me
When I make me so damn easy to love?
And why don't you need me?
Tell me, baby, why don't you need me
When I make me so damn easy to need?

RELATED: 14 Rupi Kaur Quotes About Unrequited Love To Help Heal Your Heart

Destiny Duprey is a writer who covers music, self-care, and astrology.