It’s usually called a childhood crush because it’s at some point during your childhood you have this crush but mine was my ENTIRE childhood. I became acquainted with unrequited love at a young age. I was smart, funny, and could play sports with the boys – what’s not to like about 10 year old me? I was a good friend, a great listener, and I really made an effort to spend time together but a good friend was all I got to be.


No matter what I did, he just wasn’t interested in more. It really stunts the growth of a developing self esteem. Like a rubik’s cube, I wanted to see what I could change until it finally clicked for him. The thing is, at that young age you have no idea who you are and who you want to be.


My high school crush was more of the same unrequited love. After Freshmen year we didn’t really have classes together and we weren’t in the same circle to begin with. Looking back on years of embarrassing attempts at gaining his attention, I can only hope he doesn’t actually remember me. Or at least the me I was back then because I’m not who I was back then and of course, neither is he. Seeing more of who he is now, I wonder just how much about him was all made up in my head back then.


Post college was Mr right. This time, someone who liked me back and wanted to get to know me. Unfortunately, as we got to know each other, we realized we weren’t on the same page about important topics. And that’s what it comes down to with all my other crushes as well. We want very different things out of life.  


The boys I knew have now been replaced as young adults I don’t really know. They’re different from who they were 10 years ago, as am I. Now I can clearly see just how different we are and the paths we are taking. It never would have worked out back then because the places we are now in our lives are so far apart from each other. Values, relationships, politics, future families, careers, and lifestyle choices just did not line up in enough boxes. You can fill in your own boxes with you and your ex’s choices and maybe you’ll also feel some relieving clarity of why some relationships just didn’t work out.