Can we ever stop caring about someone we once cherished? Can we stop loving someone we once loved? And why should we?
What are those circumstances in our lives where we feel the need to stop caring, to let go of that person we once held so close?
In this article, we’ll explore how you can practice caring less about someone and accept that they’re not in your life anymore. It may sound harsh, but if you’re looking for a way to stop caring, there’s probably a perfectly good reason.
It’s hard to stop caring about someone, especially when that person is close to us. Still, there are hard choices to make.
Perhaps the relationship is no longer healthy, maybe that person from a past relationship became someone else, a stranger, or possibly they hurt us too deeply. It may be that the person doesn’t care about us as much as we do them, and it’s time to let them go.
In this article, we’ll offer tips and advice on how to stop caring about someone. This article aims to help you stop spending so much time and energy caring about someone who doesn’t offer care in return.
But why is that so important?
Why is it important to let go of someone?
Sometimes those we care about – romantic partners, friends, even family members – fail to show us the same care in return.
We love them. We give them our time and energy and make space for them in our lives, but our kindness goes unappreciated, and the relationship becomes one-sided.
A one-sided, non-reciprocal dynamic is a recipe for disaster in any relationship. Eventually, the more caring person feels neglected or overworked in the relationship.
What was once a shared space of joy, compassion, and love becomes riddled with resentment, yearning for closeness, and a sense of rejection.
You may feel frustrated if you care about someone who clearly doesn’t feel the same way about you. That feeling is entirely normal, so don’t beat yourself up over it.
You’re a human being, and part of life is experiencing the pain of loving and caring. Take the time you need to process your frustration and other difficult emotions, then take the advice we’ve offered below.
Remember that the longer you stay in one sided-non-reciprocal relationship with someone who doesn’t care about you, the greater the disservice you do to yourself.
It could be a toxic relationship where one partner is abusive or a failing relationship in which apathy sets in. Either way, it’s essential to know when to detach.
Read the advice below and remember that you don’t have to take it all at once. Find some tips that resonate with you and practice them. Come back to the article later to refresh your memory or try a new piece of advice.
How to stop caring about someone
There is no easy way to let go of someone we used to love or adore, especially if we are used to living with them, making decisions with their well-being in mind, but losing ourselves in the process.
1. Reduce or cut out contact
One of the most challenging but effective ways to stop caring about someone is to stop contacting them.
If that person was a romantic partner and you spent much time together, stopping contact won’t be easy. You’ll have to break the habit of reaching out to them when you want someone to talk to or when you’re bored.
Breaking that habit is challenging, but it gets easier over time.
It’s important to reduce or completely cut out contact because if you stay in touch, you’ll allow your feelings, as confusing as they may be, to fester.
Children and other responsibilities may make it hard to cut contact, but at least reduce it or set some boundaries so that you don’t spend unnecessary time on this person who doesn’t deserve so much of your care and attention.
Over time, you may realize that the person you idealize is a pretty average person.
2. Focus on a hobby
A great way to shift your focus away from that person and back to yourself is to start a new hobby or spend more time on an existing one.
The early days of letting go of someone can be complicated, and you don’t need to judge or criticize yourself if you slip up and keep caring about them. It’s a process, so be patient with yourself.
In the meantime, it’s ok to distract yourself.
You don’t want to numb yourself to your feelings, but a little healthy distraction can give you enough breathing space to focus on and cultivate other areas of your life.
Not only do hobbies like sports, art, or health offer distraction from your negative feelings, but they also offer a ripe opportunity to improve yourself.
Exercise, creativity, and other forms of self-care allow you to practice and master a skill.
Learning a skill works wonders for your confidence and can give you that sense of inner peace and well-being that will ultimately serve your highest good by helping you let go of that person.
You start spending less time with that person, yet you find your confidence, fitness, and mental well-being improve drastically.
Over time, you realize that not having that person in your life is good for your health.
3. Spend time with friends
It may have happened to you, or you may have noticed it in a friend.
Still, when we enter a romantic relationship with someone and care about them deeply, many of us forget about the other amazing, beautiful, and caring people in our lives.
We forego friendships and neglect those who care about us because we’ve become so profoundly enamored with this particular love interest.
Just as close romantic relationships can make you forget about your friends, so can good friends help you stop caring about an ex or someone else who doesn’t care about you.
Friends are there to support us through the good and the bad times, and the best ones understand that sometimes we all get lost in relationships.
They open their arms to us with love and remind us that the friendship is genuine and full of support, love, and compassion.
4. Have a support system
Friendships and community support systems are critical to good mental health.
No matter how hard we try, we can’t get everything we need from one person. Relying on one person to fulfill all of our needs is unrealistic.
Psychotherapist and author Esther Perel explains:
“We come to one person, and we basically are asking them to give us what once an entire village used to provide. Give me belonging, give me identity, give me continuity, but give me transcendence and mystery and awe all in one. Give me comfort, give me an edge. Give me novelty, give me familiarity.”
Spending time with a community of loved ones around us helps us meet our needs without losing ourselves to one person. As a result, we’re more likely to recognize when a relationship is fading and have the courage and sense of support needed to make a positive change.
5. Remember the negative aspects of the relationship
It’s not always wise to mull and ruminate over everything that went wrong in your relationship, but sometimes it’s beneficial.
If the person you wish to stop caring about is an ex, you may think about them long after the breakup. You find yourself still caring, even though you don’t want to. You may still idealize the relationship and wonder how things could have been different.
The fact is that they aren’t different – things are how they are.
Now that the relationship is over (or ending) remember that it wasn’t all a bed of roses. Bear in mind that you two split up for a reason. Even though you cared so much about that person, you don’t have to do so anymore.
It’s not your responsibility to care about them. They’re a mature adult, and if you don’t care about them, it’s up to them to find their support system.
By reflecting on the negative aspects of the relationship, you may soon find it easier to detach from the memory of that person altogether. You’ll begin to accept that there were both good and bad times, but they are over now.
It’s time to move on and pursue your own happiness in a healthy relationship without the emotional baggage.
6. Write a letter (but don’t send it)
If you’re struggling to let go and stop caring, it may help to write your feelings down. Type or use pen and paper; it’s up to you, but write.
Writing down our thoughts and feelings can help us release them. Seeing them in the written word lets us take a step back and objectively look at our thoughts, feelings, and circumstances.
Many therapists, counselors, and mental health advocates recommend journaling as a mental health maintenance tool.
It may help to write a sincere letter to the person about whom you wish to stop caring.
Whether they’re a partner from a previous relationship, a friend you’ve outgrown, or a difficult family member, getting your feelings down on paper will offer critical insight into your situation.
Write a letter, as short or long as you like, addressed to that person, telling them how you’re choosing for yourself to stop caring about them.
Write it all down, the negative emotions, the love you have for them, all the pain you feel. Explain why stopping caring is the best thing you can do for yourself.
Don’t send the letter. It’s not for that person; it’s for you.
7. Unfollow them
It will be tough to stop caring about that person if you keep following them on social media.
Today we’re more exposed to other people’s lives and news than ever. We can learn that an old friend got married, one’s dog died, and another just moved to Australia in under a minute. As such, social media makes it hard to forget about people.
One of the healthiest things you can do for yourself if you want to stop caring is to unfollow that person’s social media accounts. It may seem like a drastic measure, but you don’t need to stay so updated with their life.
If there is something important, they’ll tell you; you may not need to know if they don’t.
Many of us have fallen into the trap of checking up on an ex on social media, breaking our hearts with what we see.
Maybe they look incredibly happy without us, they have a new love, or they post some cute pictures.
Sitting behind your phone mulling over this person is not a good look, so get them off your social media and turn your attention to the other people in your life who care about you.
8. Practice self-compassion
Self-compassion is the life-changing, eye-opening, heart-healing, and radical practice of offering yourself the kindness and compassion you would offer to someone you love.
It’s not always easy to practice self-compassion in a world that thrives on us not liking ourselves, but the better you get at this crucial life skill, the more content and peaceful you’ll become no matter what happens outside of you.
When you find yourself caring about someone who doesn’t show you the same in return, ask yourself if you could better spend your time otherwise.
Ask yourself if all this over-caring, contemplating, and wishing things were different is serving you or if it’s bringing you down, and make the right decision moving forward.
Remember that if you want to love and care for the people in your life, you must love and care for yourself first and foremost.
You’re less able to love and care for yourself well when your energy leaks from caring about someone who doesn’t share the same feelings.
I don’t care any more quotes
Here are some quotes to help you get the resolve to move forward with your life.
‘I’m not heartless; I’ve just learned how to use my heart less.’
‘Sometimes the only choice left to do is to stop caring. Make peace and move forward no matter how it hurts, because there is no reason to stay anymore.’
‘When people treat you like they don’t care, believe them.’
‘Sometimes when you give up on someone, it’s not because you don’t care anymore, but because you realize they don’t.’
‘Don’t lose yourself holding onto someone that doesn’t care about you.’
Caring about someone who doesn’t care about you is hard and can even harm your mental health.
In this article, we’ve included some tips and advice to help you get through your situation.
Remember that these tips are not a substitute for professional mental health support.
If you’re struggling, you should reach out to a therapist, counselor, or relationship coach.
Prevention is always the best cure for mental health issues, so don’t let that person you care about so much make you forget to care for yourself.
Be the pilot of your own life, cultivate inner peace and self-respect, and remember that nobody is worth sacrificing your mental health and well-being.