What Happens To The One Who Got Away? 4 People Reveal Their Bittersweet Stories

"The one that got away" isn't just a Katy Perry song. It's a person in your life you either dated or didn't, and you feel like you two really could've been something great. What happens to the one who got away afterwards? Do you think about them often? Do you check up on their social media to see if they're still single? Do you reach back out years later to see if you can make it work?

My own story about the one who got away story is actually quite tragic. Last year, I matched with this guy on a dating app who seemed like my type: From my Instagram stalking, I could tell he had a sense of humor; he was progressive and creative; he was pretty cute. He didn't have much for me to go off of from his bio for a conversation starter, so I worked with what I had. My first message was pretty embarrassing and cringe-worthy, but I hoped maybe he'd find it embarrassing in the "oh, she's kind of cute" way. That backfired. He didn't answer, I was sad, but I moved on from what could have been. I dated people, had other experiences, and then a year later (like, a week ago) I saw him on the dating app again. I swiped right. I'm still waiting to see if we match again — we probably won't — but he truly is the one that got away.

I reached out to people on the internet to hear about their own stories about the one who got away. Read on to see what happened to them.

Helen's* is now dating her friend.

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Helen, 25, met her version of the one that got away through a blind date.

"The chemistry was amazing and we had two of the swooniest dates ever," she tells Elite Daily. "But he was moving away, so nothing ever materialized. Because he often came to my city for work, I bumped into him on basically every dating app known to man for the next several years. We always matched and flirted, but again, nothing legit ever came of it. I was holding out hope that he'd move back and we'd be together, because he truly was everything I wanted in a guy."

But he moved to the city and began dating a middle school friend of hers.

"Moving on from the fantasy I had built up in my head with this guy was kind of hard," she says. "I hate to admit it, but they're really cute together."

Emily met hers at a Niall Horan concert last year.

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In October 2017, Emily, 27, attended a Niall Horan concert alone. She was in the second row next to a guy, and they struck up conversation during the opening act.

"He was a flight attendant from Israel and we had a lot in common and similar music taste," she tells Elite Daily. "He was in [New York City] for the weekend and wanted to go to a show, so he went to [Niall Horan's]."

Emily and the guy next to her talked from the end of the opener until Niall took the stage.

"When Niall went on, he kept leaning over to me to whisper about what his favorite songs were, and then when 'Slow Hands' came on, I pushed to the front for a bit to get a picture and gave him a wave. And then when I went to go back, we both got lost [in] the crowd and I never got [to] ask for his number!"

The saddest tale I ever did hear. But wait, there's more.

"So I went on [a One Direction group chat] and told them the story and one of the girls in the [chat] was at a hotel with the same Israeli airline and they tried to find him!"

Unfortunately Emily couldn't track him down, and to this day, he is the one that got away.

Cristiana's is a professional athlete now and she thinks of him sometimes.

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Cristiana, 24, dated a varsity athlete when many of her friends studied abroad (and she didn't), and she felt pretty lonely.

"We connected on everything, [from] our culture to our interests to what we wanted out of life," she tells Elite Daily. "I’d meal prep for him and pick him up from the library and he’d read my thesis chapters and offer feedback."

She says things changed a year-and-a-half into the relationship, when he "went cold." He got an injury and needed surgery, and they broke up.

"I’ve since moved on, but certain things still really remind me of him," she says. "He’s playing professional basketball in Europe now, and when I first heard that I was infuriated; I felt like our time together was important to getting him to that point [...] and was angry not to be [part] of it. Eventually that faded and now I’m happy he’s living his dream. Maybe our paths will cross again some day."

Farhan's is from Greek life during his senior year of college.

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Farhan, 24, looks back to his senior year of college a couple of years back, to someone he was "instantly" attracted to but never dated.

"Her beauty, charm, drive, goals, maturity, humor, and a sense of family are what I now realize made me fall in love with her," he tells Elite Daily. "I sold myself short, convincing myself I was not good enough and would never have a chance with her. To this day I still think about all the obvious signs that were there."

Farhan says she started dating someone else, as did he, and she is still with that same person.

"I have been single for some time now and find it very difficult to pursue a relationship with anyone," he says. "I am so happy for her and wish her a happy life full of love and laughter."

Now, off to cry and think of all the cute relationships that could have been...

*Name has been changed at the source's request due to privacy concerns.