Is It Really Love?
Posted by Jenn Clark on December 2, 2012 at 10:30 PM
Is it really love?
You can’t sleep. You can barely eat. Your head spirals with thoughts of him nearly 24/7. You check your phone every 15 minutes to see if he’s called or texted and when it does ring, your heart sinks when you realize it’s your mom’s number on the caller ID. When you’re not with him, it seems like you’re constantly wondering what he’s doing, how much he likes you, and what the future holds. Surely this must be love...
Not so fast! In the early stages of a relationship, it can be easy to confuse infatuation, intense attraction, and preoccupation over a man with feelings of love for him. How many times have we met a guy who is cute and funny and before we learn his middle name, we think we are “in love?” While real love must contain passion and desire, it goes far beyond those initial feelings. Truly being in love has more to do with commitment, compatibility, and the ability to successfully combine your lives than it does with lust.
So how do you know if you really love that guy you’re involved with? Start by asking yourself the following questions.
Does he make you feel good about yourself? A healthy relationship brings happiness into your life. When you’re in love, you’ll feel built-up and safe, as opposed to worn out, depleted, and uncertain. Constantly wondering where you stand with him, being consumed with insecurities or feeling like you’re on a roller coaster ride can certainly be intense and it can be tempting to confuse that intensity with love. In these types of relationships, it’s important to remember that if you feel bad more often than you feel good, it’s not love.
Are you okay with his faults? Of course you know that no guy will be perfect, but it’s important you can live with his particular imperfections. It doesn’t matter so much what they are as it does that you are able to handle them. If you’re continually trying to change things about him or often wishing he were different, it’s not love. And he’s probably not a great fit for you either.
Do you wonder if another guy would make you happier? When you’re truly in love, you’re less likely to think that the grass might be greener elsewhere. If you often find yourself fantasizing about meeting someone “better,” this is a significant sign you’re not really in love. It’s one thing to find another man attractive. It’s entirely another to wonder if he’d make a better boyfriend than your current one.
Are you able to successfully work through conflict? In every relationship, there will be the inevitable issues and problems. You won’t always be in synch, you’ll have disagreements and yes, from time-to-time, you will even hurt each other. When it comes to conflict in relationships, how you handle it is more significant than the fact that it exists. Conflict should be seen as an opportunity to learn about each other and to bring you closer, not to drive you apart. Having respect for each other’s differences and seeking to understand the other’s needs and desires is fundamental to truly loving another person.
Is your relationship more than just sexual? Although sex is integral to a loving, healthy relationship, it can’t be the entire basis for it. No matter what you think, you don’t love that guy who only texts you late-night for a booty call every couple of weeks. (Seriously, you don’t!) Sure, you may think you do, but how can you really love him when you’re more familiar with his penis size than with how he handles the day-to-day aspects of his life? Real love only occurs when you truly get to know another person...outside of the bedroom.
Maybe it doesn’t actually matter if you’re truly in love with your guy. If it’s how you feel -- regardless of the truth -- isn’t that your reality? Nope! All too often, women stay in relationships where real love is lacking due to other intense emotions which cloud their judgment. They think, “But I can’t end things, I love him!” Meanwhile, they are cheated on, disrespected, and treated poorly. They are filled with confusion and turmoil. Ladies, no matter how it feels -- this isn’t love. Love isn’t about suffering through a man’s bad behavior and hanging in there hoping it changes. Love isn’t about staying with a man out of the fear of being alone or not being able to find someone better. At the end of the day, really loving a man means that you are really loved in return.
Jenn Clark is a relationship advice expert and author of the book “How to Be a Goddess (A Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming the Woman Men Dream About…).” You can find it on her Facebook page:www.facebook.com/jennx30somethingandsingle
Or on amazon.com at the following link: http://www.amazon.com/Goddess-Step--Becoming-About-ebook/dp/B006HBSWSS/r
Originally published on August 5th, 2012