Unrequited love

I know I don’t post all that often, so you guys’ll just have to bear with me, k?
I have a boyfriend who goes to a university (I’m still in high school, ladies & gents). We’ve been together for about 2 months, and not too long ago I realized that I love him. The giddy feeling I get each time that I see him (which I’ve never actually had before) was kind of a tip-off. It’s just this feeling that, no matter what else is going on, you’re with him & he’s with you and somehow that makes everything a little better.
My question is this: My boyfriend tells me that, for some unusual reason, he cannot love me back. I sometimes think this is a little odd, but we’re still doing swimmingly in our relationship. Is it possible to keep a relationship going for a long time if love is only given by one person in the relationship? If so, how long could it last?

Is it possible to keep a relationship going for a long time if love is only given by one person in the relationship?

Short answer–no. Trust me on this one. I hate to burst your bubble, but I am the world’s leading expert on unrequited love, and while it may be possible in your own mind to carry a torch for a long time, if he doesn’t feel about you the way you feel about him, look for somebody else. I know it will hurt (dear God, how I know) but it hurts less in the long run if you start looking now, and if you can, just keep him as a friend. The friend part never worked for me, but YMMV.

The first thing you need to do is adjust your definition of love. Love really isn’t a feeling: love is action: it’s consideration and kindness and lust and self-sacrifice: love is not in the reason that someone is holding your head while you vomit or bringing you flowers or humoring your bat-shit crazy aunt: it’s in the fact that they are doing these things at all. You’ll drive yourself crazy in life if you spend too much time worrying about what your partner feels: the fact is you are seperate people and you will always be seperate people and you will never, ever really know what it means to be him, or he what it means to be you. Consentrate on who they are, not what they feel.

My husband has never said he loves me, and never will. But everything he does for me-- from the pragmatic to erotic to the sublime–is a love-gift. Our relationship is fine and I expect it to continue foresver.

On the other hand, if your young man dosen’t show love in everything he does–and I hope you understand that hearts-and-flowers is the least of the ways to show love–then all the words in the universe are meaningless. If he isn’t thoughtful, considerate, amusing, entertaining, and admirable, then it isn’t love and the relationship can’t last. And, I daredsay, that if you don’t act towards him with love, then you don’t love him, either, no matter what your heart does when he walks into the room.

On a pragmatic level, I feel compelled to point out that “I can’t love you” is sometimes a way for young men to say “I won’t commit to you”–it’s another understanding of the word love. If commitment is important to you (and frankly, I don’t think you should be commited to someone that is so far away and when you are so young) then you might give some thought to letting him go.

If carrying a torch is what you feel that the need to be doing with your life right now, that’s your decision. We can’t guarantee it will light your way on any journey of self-discovery, though.

A relationship can last as long as the people in it endure. If you have no need to be loved , you may have found your match.

But what DO you need? Not everyone needs to hear the words or be gifted with presents or thoughtful deeds, but I need to be prized in a relationship, so I would not seek one or endure in one without the things that mean love to me.