35 Songs About Unrequited Love We Can All Relate To


“Creep” by Radiohead

Song year: 1992

I would say this is as much a song about being a creep as it is a song about unrequited love.

How can you know it’s unreciprocated if you don’t even ask?

Of course, getting up the nerve to ask is the hardest part.

But if you’ve ever admired anyone from afar, surely this song will resonate with you.

“Just My Imagination” by The Temptations

Song year: 1971

Lost love lyrics

A simple ballad about imagining yourself with that special someone.

My favorite lines are these:

“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/Runnin’ away with me.”

Enjoy the slow groove of “Just My Imagination.”

“Hello” by Lionel Richie

Song year: 1984

This unforgettable classic certainly seems to fit the bill when it comes to unrequited love.

Reportedly, in his younger years, Richie used to be too shy to talk to the beautiful women that walked past him.

So, the song was borne out of this simple phrase:

“Hello, is it me you’re looking for?”

It took a while for Richie to finish the song, but in the end it was worth it.

And, I’m sure Riche isn’t the only person that’s experienced similar torture.

“Stacy’s Mom” by Fountains Of Wayne

Song year: 2003

This is quite possibly one of the best pop songs of the early 2000s.

Fountains of Wayne are brilliant in their ability to write unforgettable melodic hooks and complex, intelligent lyrics.

Message wise, this, perhaps, is one of the more direct songs they’ve got.

The basic premise is that a young boy is in love with his friend’s mom.

Beyond that, there’s no evidence to support unrequited love, but yes, there’s a good chance it won’t work out too well for Stacy’s friend.

“You Sent Me Flying” by Amy Winehouse

Song year: 2003

Unfortunately, sometimes your crush knows that you’re crushing on them, and to add insult to injury, they string you along and manipulate you.

It’s one thing if your love goes unanswered – which can be painful enough.

Quite another if the other person uses that to their advantage.

This is the painful picture “You Sent Me Flying” by the late Amy Winehouse paints.

These lines are heartbreaking:

“And now I feel so small discovering you knew/How much more torture would you have put me through?/You probably saw me laughing at all your jokes/Or how I did not mind when you stole all my smokes, yeah.”

“Sitting, Waiting, Wishing” by Jack Johnson

Song year: 2004

Have you ever felt like you’d do anything for the person you’ve fallen for?

Have you been built up only to be let down?

Then this song is your unrequited anthem.

“Keep building it up/But then you’re shooting me down/But I’m already down/Just wait a minute.”

“If” by Janet Jackson

Song year: 1993

If you’ve ever fantasized about someone you couldn’t have, then you’ve captured the essence of Janet Jackson’s “If.”

You’ve thought about it and you know you could be good for that person, but it’s just not happening.

It’s what can be painful about one-sided love.

“Surrender” by Billy Talent

Song year: 2007

There’s no question Billy Talent has ushered forth their own brand of melodrama with their music, but when it’s as expertly executed as it is in this song, how can you find fault with it?

If you’ve experienced unanswered love, I’m sure you can relate to these lines:

“Even though I know what I’m looking for/She’s got a brick wall behind her door/I’d travel time and confess to her/But I’m afraid she’d shoot the messenger.”

“Excuse Me Mr.” by No Doubt

Song year: 1996

Why do we fall for the unavailable?

I don’t have the answers.

But it could be because they’ve got something going for them.

There are plenty of great lines in this upbeat song, but these are probably my favorite:

“For most love comes for free/They don’t pay the high cost/Of mental custody I’ll pay bail for a guarantee/Please make space for me in the time yet to be.”


“Leading Me On” by Harem Scarem

Song year: 2005

This is by far my favorite song about heartbreak and unrequited love.

It’s full of raw emotion, energy and even anger.

This is a great segment of lyrics to peruse:

“Talk is cheap/Flowing from the weak/You lie and deceive/But only when you speak.”

Nobody likes to be led on and for better or for worse, it can go on for a long time.

If someone has been leading you on, this is your tune.

“Beyond Repair” by Harem Scarem

Song year: 2008

Another expertly written song about unrequited love via the Toronto melodic rock band Harem Scarem.

As with “Leading Me On”, it’s full of raw emotion.

The chorus says it all:

“But your silence/Is saying everything/You’re made of stone/And sinking beyond repair.”

Nobody likes to be toyed with.

Nobody wants to lose their precious time to a relationship that's going nowhere.

You can hear and feel all these emotions in the interludes between the lyrics.

The Best Unrequited Love Songs, Final Thoughts

Songs about unrequited love

In my experience, there’s nothing especially fun about unrequited love.

I have a song called “Your Eyes Give It Away” that’s essentially about this very topic.

Whether there’s someone you love or someone that loves you, it can be hard to find completion in the situation.

But that’s the most important thing – that you find completion.

You can’t necessarily help the other person understand what’s important to them.

But it is possible to become clear on your feelings.

So, whatever situation you’re facing right now, remember that you don’t need to live with these feelings forever.

I hope you enjoyed those songs about loving someone who is taken.

If you want cheering up and inspiration for finding the one, you should check out our list of best love songs here.

As you'll see, there's hope yet.

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