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Can You Ever Stop Loving Someone or Find Love in Someone Else?

If you are in the worst of a breakup you’ve probably wondered… Can you ever stop loving someone and want to love someone else again?

can you ever stop loving someone

Love comes with happiness and pain. All the goodness you feel together feels that much worse when things are over. In those moments, you wonder, can you ever stop loving someone? I’ve been there.

Whether you’ve been cheated on, lied to, or broken up with, still loving that person is what makes it all hurt so much. But you can’t just turn those feelings off like a switch.

When you’ve been with someone, for even a short time, you get accustomed to that. You are not just fond of them, but you expect them to be around.

When someone has hurt you, you carry so many feelings for them. You may be sad, angry, and even infuriated, but the love doesn’t just disappear. The only reason it is hurting so much is that the love is lingering.

But, can that stop? Can you ever stop loving someone?

[Read: Letting go of people you love – why it’s so hard and how to do it right]

The pain of trying to stop loving someone

Eventually, love can cease. It can decrease in intensity, and those feelings you have for that person can become almost unnoticeable. But, just because you want to stop loving someone doesn’t mean it’s easy. I’m sure you know you cannot always control your feelings.

This is why we fall in love with people that may not be appropriate. This is why we get angry and say things we end up regretting. Feelings can take over, and even when we know they are harming us, it can feel impossible to turn them off.

But, as you also probably know, love isn’t always rational. It makes us do crazy things. And those things aren’t just knocking on someone’s door in the middle of the night. Love can throw you into heartbreak and tear you down.

[Read: 12 steps to help you deal with heartbreak and find peace]

Theories about love

Most of us have been there or maybe even there right now. In those moments, it can feel like letting go of that love will never happen. In the midst of heartbreak, you think this pain will last forever. This is when we beg ourselves to stop loving someone. We believe that if the love goes away, the pain will go with it.

When you stop loving someone, you feel like you have moved on. You feel like you are ready to step forward and put the past behind you. But with that, so many people claim to love someone forever. Even after a breakup, heartbreak, and years of being apart, some people claim that the love is still there.

So, can you ever stop loving someone? Or will the love always be there in some capacity?

[Read: How to come out of a relationship stronger after it ends]

Can you ever stop loving someone?

It is never easy to stop loving someone, no matter what’s happened. You could have a mutual breakup, a screaming match, or be dumped out of the blue with no word, but the love doesn’t magically poof into thin air.

The problem is human nature. We cling to familiarity. We want what we had back. And we don’t want the change. We don’t want to have to move on and find someone else. All of that prevents us from letting the love for that person fade away.

Even if you know that moving on is what’s best for you, part of you clings to what you know. This is why many people believe you can never stop loving someone. Thankfully, I’m not one of those people. Love can be forever, but it isn’t always. Love can change, grow, weaken, and stop.

[Read: What is real love? And how to spot it]

Some people think every love you’ve ever had always holds a place in your heart. When you’re 80, you’ll still think back on your feelings for your first love. That just isn’t true. Perhaps it is for some, but not for most. Love comes and goes, just like friendships, jobs, and life.

Sure, you can always remember that love and what it was like, but it doesn’t mean you still love someone.

If you end a relationship, with time, you can stop loving someone. You may even stop loving them right in the middle of the relationship. *But that is a discussion for another time.*

You can be in love with someone, break up, and still love them but in a different way. Love can grow stronger and stronger. And you can love someone less and less until you stop loving them. It is possible, no matter how hard it seems.

[Read: How to let go of someone you love with ration and reason]

Why it’s hard to stop loving someone

It can be so hard to stop loving someone because it isn’t something you can force to happen. Just like you can’t force yourself to love someone you don’t love. You can’t force yourself to stop loving someone and just let go. You can distract yourself with other things and act like you’re over it, but love doesn’t just stop abruptly.

Figuring out how to stop loving someone isn’t a matter of wanting it or working for it. It takes time, patience, and perspective. [Read: How to get over a breakup and feel like you again]

My stopping love story

After being in love through most high school and college, I figured I would always love the guy I was with. I thought even though I’d move on and find someone else that I would always carry love for him. When we finally went our separate ways, we even told each other that’d we’d always love each other.

That simply wasn’t true. I look back on that time fondly. I remember the good times and bad times. And I appreciate what that entire relationship taught me, but I no longer love him. And it only took about six months for me to realize it.

If six months sounds like a long time to you, you’re in for a big surprise. The stronger the love, the harder it can be to stop. But, everyone has their own timetable. Just because I could stop loving a guy from my past after 6 months, it doesn’t mean it will be the same for you. It could be more or less.

It will be different for you and everyone else, but there is a difference between appreciation and love. There is a difference between wishing the best for someone and still loving them. [Read: How your first love effects your future relationships]

The key difference

That difference is time. When you’ve been apart from someone, it is easier to let them slip your mind. When you don’t see them or speak to them, you get preoccupied with the rest of your life.

If you love your high school girlfriend or boyfriend, splitting up can seem impossible when you see them at school every day. But, the reason those feelings can slip away so unnoticeably when someone goes off to college is that the comfort and regularity are gone.

Instead of seeing them every day, you talk less and less. You are preoccupied with other things, and those feelings fade. The same thing happens after a breakup. You go on living your life, and eventually, you notice you won’t think about them for days or even weeks.

Then, you stop noticing that all together, and the love is gone. [Read: How to unlove someone – 14 powerful ways to conquer the impossible]

How to love someone else

Once you realize that you’ve stopped loving someone from your past, you can love again. No matter what happened in that relationship, you grow.

You separate the relationship and your ex. You can look back at what you learned from it rather than thinking about the actual person.

When you meet someone new and share your past, you don’t talk about your ex but what you went through. You speak of what you learned, what you experience, how it changed you, rather than complaining about your ex.

The time you took to stop loving someone and move on is what gives you that clarity and ability to love again. That growth and time gives you perspective. You learn that not all love is forever. [Read: How to fall in love again after a heartbreak]

An example of stopped love

Another great example is Friends. Yes, Friends, the 90’s TV show. It is my go-to for relatable anecdotes.

A forever love would be Rachel and Ross. Although dysfunctional *that’s a topic for another time*, they always loved each other. That love may have wavered from time to time and went from platonic to romantic but never ended.

A temporary love was Monica and Richard. She loved him. She thought they would get married. But it didn’t work. It was hard for her to move on. They had their on and off moments too. But in the end, she stopped loving him and was able to love Chandler.

I know it’s just a TV show, but you can stop loving someone. When it’s not meant to be, and it’s hurting you, you can stop loving them. You need to mourn the loss and adjust to the changes, but eventually, you can stop loving someone. [Read: How to lose feelings for someone and let go of the might-have-beens]

Stop loving someone

When it feels impossible, realize that the feeling is temporary. Love heightens everything. It makes you feel so much more intensely. But as that fades with time, you realize that that love was temporary.

You may always have loving feelings for those from your past, but you can stop loving them.

Everyone’s journey to letting go of love will be different. Some peoples’ love stories end with someone new while others end in years of singlehood. Neither is wrong. Sometimes knowing that you can stop loving someone is all you need to start letting them go and move forward with your life.

[Read: How to fall out of love when you see no future]

So, can you ever stop loving someone? Yes, it is possible, but give yourself space and time to grieve so that you can move forward in the healthiest way possible.

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Samantha Ann
My name is Samantha Ann. I am 28 years old. It was always my dream to become an advice columnist, so after years of off and online dating and eventually finding...