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How do you know when your in love?
September 28, 2006
5:17 pm
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Sonic
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I have met someone who I feel very comfortable with and have been dating for 4months. He is funny, caring, compationate and so much more. He tells me he loves me all the time but I dont feel able to tell him that I love him. I sometime wonder is it too early for him to feel that way for me or am I unable to love!!! I cant say I have ever loved anyone...but then again I may have but not recognised it...am I looking for too much...I worry that I can't love someone!!!

September 28, 2006
5:53 pm
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confused_in_canada
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Well I had the exact same issue with my GF. I had told her I loved her probably 2-3 months before she said it back. She felt quite badly about not feeling that way, and I told her that I understood, that not everyone moves at the same pace and I'd keep chugging right along...

When she finally did tell me that she loved me, she thanked me for sticking around and waiting for her. Of course I was like 'well if you love the person why would you say it then split a few weeks later just becuase they aren't there'..

So long story short, I don't know if I can say what love is, I think it's lots of things to lots of people. But you will know when and if it is so, and just hope that your fella understands and that he'll be there when it finally hits you 😉

Hope that helps.

September 28, 2006
6:03 pm
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Sonic
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Hi confused,
thank you for your response. We talk openly about all manner of things and he knows i love being with him and would do anything for him. He says he understands and is willing to wait as long as it takes...I really worry I wont love him.. not because of any reason other than "can I love someone". I want to have all the butterflies and nice feelings but I just feel "lighter" when i'm around him, that's one of the reasons I want it to work. We make each other laugh, we can talk for hours and not be fed up, always making time to chat...do fun things. I dont want to let him down and I know he cares for me alot.

September 28, 2006
7:20 pm
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taj64
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For me, I have been in love only a few times. Each time, I just knew. It was not an exact reasons but a bunch of reasons. I like excitement yet peaceful feeling. I have experienced that. I liked being in love. Sometimes it comes only a few times in life. Im grateful to have had it a few times.

September 28, 2006
7:23 pm
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Honolulugal
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Sonic,

Sometimes love "grows" on you and you turn around and realize, "hey, I love him/her".

Different types of love are out there too. Lots of us here have had too much excitement and drama. Addictive, but unhealthy, ultimately.

September 28, 2006
7:36 pm
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doubleloss
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hi sonic. love...what is it???well, so many different things to different people. Once I read somewhere that it is very different to "fall in love" than "to be in love". I understood it as falling in love is that amazing state of infatuation, excitment, getting to know each other etc, and then, being in love is when those feelings settle and start to take root, and grow. Kind of makes sense to me.

It took me about 6 months before I realized I loved my xbf, and just as i was ready to tell him, because i really felt it, he dumped me.

he started telling me that he loved me a few weeks into the relationship. go figure, i believed him.

anyway, watch out for red flags, and enjoy every second. No point living life in paranoia expecting the worst. You'll know when/if you love your bf, you just will...I believe that all humans have the innate capacity to love, so take it easy, don't be hard on yourself and keep being honest.

September 28, 2006
8:42 pm
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Honolulugal
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Sonic,

Double makes a good point. Be honest with yourself.

You know, maybe you don't love this guy...maybe you never will? I do feel certain, however that you will know.

I would sure miss that tummy-flip feeling if I never had it again! I know I'm in love when I want everyone around me to be happy and in love, too!

September 30, 2006
4:24 pm
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Sonic
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Thank you all for your helpful ideas. I really hope that love happens for me..I'd really want it to be for the person I am with now...
I'm not sure how much my past experiences with my parents have affected my ability to display emotions...but if the person is right then I feel it will just happen and I won't have any control over it...

It's a bit of an unknown quantity but I really appreciate your responses
XXX

September 30, 2006
4:37 pm
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StronginHim77
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Sonic -

Would you be comfortable sharing your age with us? I think "Love" means different things to people at different stages of their lives.

- Ma Strong

September 30, 2006
4:41 pm
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Sonic
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Hi stronginhim... I'm 33

September 30, 2006
5:06 pm
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StronginHim77
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Sonic -

If you have never felt that you were "in love" with anyone in your entire, teenage or adult life, you might have some intimacy issues or you may have been wounded in some manner when you were young? Not sure. I'm not medically qualified in this area, but you might want to talk to someone about it? Probe the issue, so to speak, with a neutral party who could help you determine if you are healthy in your outlook, or if there are some roadblocks in your heart.

- Ma Strong

September 30, 2006
5:24 pm
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Sonic
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Hi Strong,
my upbringing wasn't the best emotionally. my parents hardly showed emotions except for anger. I was hit quite alot as a child. I left home at 16 and have looked after myself ever since...not relied on anyone to get me through anything..I met someone at 18 and married him at 21..I couldn't deal with the genuine kindness and warmth my husband and his family showed me and I now see that I tried to make him angry with me because thats what I could cope with. we split when I was 23. it was very hard and I think that was the closest i've come to loving someone. I stayed single for 3years then met someone who was controling, aggressive and violent towards me. this didn't appear so until we married a year after we met..our marriage lasted until I was 30. I managed to pluck up the courage to get out before he did anymore damage. Again I stayed single for just over 3 years. In that time I had no emotional support from my parents..they let me stay in a family owned home and eventually my dad started his aggressive behaviour again and eneded up attacking me and kicked me out of the house. I managed to find somewhere to live and eventually bought a house. I have been renovating it for the past year and which has been really hard physically and emotionally along with work and all the issues i've not dealt with. I have a very determined nature and will/have succeed in many areas of my life...when it comes to emtions i feel "odd", "different" and "detached" ...I can cry at a film, I can feel empathy for others...sometimes too much but when it comes to my feelings in a relationship I really feel..thats the problem I don't feel...

October 1, 2006
11:50 am
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Matteo
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I think that the distinction between “falling in love” and “loving” is very important to make. Falling in love is all the wonderful feelings and butterflies when you are with that person, thinking about them a lot as well, while loving is actual admiration and acceptance of that person for who they are. Or is it?

Someone said that we fall in love because of their virtues, and we love despite their vices.

So being in a loving relationship would be a balance between what we like about that person and what we can tolerate, which is not necessary “love” as is meant to be, while “unconditional” love would be loving no matter who and how “bad” that person is. Ha!
I read already a statement in some stupid self-help book that falling in love is pathological, so love understood as unconditional love for sure breeds pathology and codependency. If we look at love as pathology, something absolutely out of norm, we definitively should be talking about unconditional love, and maybe then unconditional love should be called “love” and love should be called “conditional love” – or Love and love - because this is what we are talking about here – right? Finding a balance in loving. Contradiction in terms. Not that it is my great concern and not that it happens often between partners. I think most people are steering towards “balanced”, “loving” relationship instead of unconditional love, so there is not much to worry about with that point of view. Although, having an ideal love (unconditional) in mind and at the same time trying to get a healthy and benefiting both partners balance in a relationship brings a lot of confusion and misconceptions.
Sorry for that digression.

For me ‘falling in love” is absolutely necessary to proceed to loving in an intimate relationship. It is tied with my attraction to the other person, especially physical attraction which is very important when it comes to sex. That’s why I can love my friends, but if I didn’t fall in love with them, I cannot imagine being intimate with them physically. For me developing a friendship without physical attraction and falling in love, and later becoming lovers is not feasible. That attraction must be there, period – which doesn’t mean that we are going to jump into physical relationship right away.

I think men more often say “I love you” when they just fall in love, which doesn’t mean that they will and that they can go further into actual loving., while women tend to say “I love you” when they are able to trust and to commit. When men tells me that he loves me early on in a relationship I am not alarmed by this because I do love him too – I did fall in love just like he did, not meaning accepting and tolerating his faults, nor commitment. I may proceed to loving him, but it may as well stop at that point and I will never love him - this feeling of falling in love with him will pass and that will be the end of it.

I know that I am capable of falling in love and of loving, but my last love was capable only of falling in love; there is no doubt about it in my mind. Recently I spoke about it to my friend who I know is capable of loving, but he admitted what I suspected for awhile already, that he never fell in love in his entire life. I guess for him love means friendship mixed with sex and he is one of those who can start relationship with friendship and everything later “falls into place”, while I have to feel not only very strong attraction to my partner but all those singing birds, flowers, butterflies, rainbows, clouds and fireworks (sooooo “pathological”!) while starting this friendship, because if I don’t, we will remain platonic friends forever.

October 1, 2006
12:57 pm
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Sonic,

Make having fun together a priority, and the rest will follow. I have found that love is different things to me at different times in my life.

It can be so many things, like a little child picking a dandelion and offering it, a new born baby's cries,
wrapping presents for Christmas, having someone read to you. Its so many things. Sometimes moving really fast and winning a race, or at other times watching from the sidelines.

And of course you can love someone! It does seem though that genuinely loving yourself is part of it. We all have different timelines in relationship. I am more like a turtle myself ... slow and steady ... yet the turtle never gets anywhere in life unless it sticks its neck out.

And maybe you feeling 'lighter' around him is how you experience love. Lighter is a good thing.

I too grew up in an emotionally withholding house. There was never any physical violence which I am very grateful for and that might be holding you back. But don't be afraid to love. It can bring such great highs and lows too yet it is being fully alive.

And right on Matteo and Strong

October 1, 2006
1:41 pm
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StronginHim77
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Sonic -

While in therapy with a psychologist last year, I learned that my conscious(and also SUBconscious) select dion of a mate had a great deal to do with the family dynamics in which I was raised. I grew up in an emotionally cold and "unavailable" family and received constant messages about my general worthlessness. They also "raged" a great deal. As an adult, I grew up with absolutely NO IDEA of what "love" really was.

Just like you, my first marriage was to a basically decent, wonderful guy. I ended up treating him VERY badly, betraying his faith in me and trying to provoke in him a dislike of me or some ANGER. After leaving him, I moved through a progression of partners (some of them I married...some, I didn't) who were increasingly unavailable, emotionally and -- eventually -- abusive. My last two partners (marriage to a narcissist which ended in 6 days, followed by an engagement to a borderline personality disordered man who abused me verbally and emotionally to the point of physical breakdown on my part) were classic examples of how "clueless" we can be in our personal relationships without help, sorting out our dysfunctional childhoods and the faulty relationship programming we received.

My strongest suggestion to you would be to get into one-on-one therapy with a competent therapist or psychologist, to address those childhood issues which have carried over into your adulthood. You are certainly on the right track and have done a magnificent and courageous job of "holding it together," despite the mistreatment by your parents. If you weren't so brave, you'd be dead or an end-stage addict by now. With your commendable honesty and willingness to probe your "innards," you would benefit enormously from profressional therapy. It would help you to sort through your concerns about this new relationship in your life and address any emotional blocks or problems which might need understanding and healing.

I am so glad you came to these threads. You are good stuff, as they say. Please keep posting. You have friends here.

: )

- Ma Strong

October 1, 2006
1:51 pm
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honeyb
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I believe that love and being in love is a wonderful thing. Even through all of the painful things I've been through and through all of the painful things I have yet to endure..If you don't 'know' you are in love, then you probably aren't but that doesn't mean you won't fall in love with this man nor does it mean you are not capable. Don't stress so much over it and don't try so hard - when God is ready for you to be 'in love' you will be and you will know it! you can't change what He has in store for you! By reading your posts, I can tell that you are a caring, good person. It could well be that this man turns out to be your all time very best friend only - but there is nothing wrong with that! True friends are awesome and vital...and if you fall in love with him and he is the love of your life...in due time, you'll know...thanks for sharing and the best to you always, honeyb

October 1, 2006
3:38 pm
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TryingToLetGoAndMoveOn
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I am very sorry that, you didn't have the proper role models as parents within your childhood. Thus, the feeling of mistrust that you appear to experience.

It's also clear that, you are afraid to feel your emotions, because, in your childhood, your parents had taught you to repress them.

Therefore, whenever you DO happen to experience an emotion, then you don't know how to handle it, because you aren't used to dealing with them.

And, a part of you, isn't exactly trusting your current relationship, because your partner is the opposite of what you would expect. You emotionally shut down, because, that's what you feel comfortable with doing.

It's easy and understandable for you to be confused about love, seeing as how you hadn't received any of it, from either of your parents.

I do happen to agree with one of the other people on this thread, when they had made a comment about you having a "blockage" somewhere, possibly within your heart. As, it also appears to me, as if you do indeed have a blockage somewhere deep within you. (Stemming from your childhood.)

I would also suggest that you talk to a counsellor about these issues within yourself. So that, you can try to work through them, and deal with them, and break some peace to yourself, and to your life for once. 🙂

Take care.

Trying.

October 1, 2006
3:40 pm
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TryingToLetGoAndMoveOn
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I meant to say, "bring" not "break." Lol.

October 1, 2006
6:19 pm
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Anonymous
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I wrote a poem called "what is true love?" I posted it a while back on a thread called the same thing. That is how I know for sure. Let me know if you need me to re-post it.

P&L

October 1, 2006
8:08 pm
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Matteo
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P&L ~ bring it on!

October 1, 2006
9:16 pm
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Anonymous
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okay, let me find it on my hard drive...i am really proud of it!

October 1, 2006
9:28 pm
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Anonymous
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This was written for my parents, as well as Christopher Reeve whom I once met. Because I have seen it can happen in a healthy way, I know it is possible, and it ultimatel helps me gauge if the relationship I am considering meets the criteria. Thanks for reading.

What is True Love? By P&L

If I should be on my deathbed before my true love,

he will be there holding my hand

as my memories of the cast of characters in my life fades,

as I slip away

my true love will be there until the end hold my hand comforting me reminding me of our

special fond, loving memories together

until the final moment should I meet my God, yet our love will last for eternity

And, if he should go before I do, there is nowhere else I will need to be but by his side,

holding his hand, supporting and loving him in the same fashion

That is the true love I await. No, I have not yet met my true love.

October 1, 2006
10:15 pm
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MomofLandL
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I wouldn't worry so much about the words of love, rather, pay attention to the signs and actions.
New love is a different kind of love,anyway. It is like a well informed infatuation.
If you don't feel comfortable saying "I love you", then don't. It doesn't mean you don't love this person. You might just not be one that's into verbal justification.
Is he kind to you? Is he attractive to you, even if he is not to others? Does he treat you with respect, like a good, old friend, but a very affectionate friend?
Then, if the relationship lasts, like into marriage, and beyond early marriage, you will find real love.
Real love is not hollywood glamorous. Real love is like a rock you can lean on. When you are down, he gives you a hand up. He tactfully tells you when you are letting yourself go, so you can keep up your self esteem. It's a love like, you used to be so cutie wootie all the time, but now you've been pregnant three times, got a little "more of you to love", and he still looks at you like you are cutie wootie.
Once you loose respect and the root of trust, there is little hope for love.
I've seen couples curse at each other. I don't have that sort of relationship with my spouse.
Hope that helps.
Love grows from one kind to another. It takes alot of effort, alot of swallowing your tongue and compromise at certain times.
I always look at my spouse like; you never know, what if today is the last time I see him. That keeps you in good perspective.

October 2, 2006
12:51 pm
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Sonic
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thankyou to everyone for your insight and perspective on love....there are some good bits of advice. I will endeavour to "try" not to think too much about my emotions and just let them flow.
MomofLandL:- all the things you mention about loving someone are all the things I have with my partner..I just don't feel...everything about our relationship feels right but there is something that I just can't put my finger on...
He makes me feel special, makes me laugh, is there for me when I struggle and much much more. Why don't I feel an attachment. I think about many people in my life and wonder what it would be like without them, just to see how I may feel, I'm too logic about it.. I find myself saying "it would be sad if X wasn't in my life anymore, but I am would get over it". I hate it when I think that way because I know in other situations I can get upset for others and feel thier pain but when it comes to my feelings I don't even have to try and surpress them..it just happens!
P&L:- thankyou for the poem you should be proud of it. I can logically understand all of what you say but "feeling" it is my biggest challenge.
TryingToLetGoAndMoveOn:- I think your correct about a blockage I better call "dino rod" :o)...I have wondered if I had emtions as stupid as it sound. If i'm in a situation when I think I should be feeling something here, I don't. I fear that my feelings were squashed so long ago its become automatic for them to be surpressed without me even recognising it. I was a very emotional child and slowly its coming back but on a very small scale...but I guess I have to start somewhere.
StronginHim77:- thankyou for your kind words. It would seem you have had your fair share of the bumpy rides. It's good to hear your making good choices for yourself. I agree about childhood affecting adulthood and choices in partners. I was fortunate during my first marriage to meet such a lovely man...not so fortuante that I didn't know how to handle his kindness.. Having met him really showed me "the other side of the coin"...I see my upbringing, to some degree, as a positive. My parents showed me what I don't want to be like and the kind of relationship I don't want. Now I am trying to undo the emotional part and really appreciate the support from you all.
Thank you
XXX

October 2, 2006
9:34 pm
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MomofLandL
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Sonic:
If you are concerned that you don't feel a connection with this person, why don't you just take a little vacation from eachother.
Go away for a week with some girlfriends, or just tell him you have some stuff to straiten up around the house for the next few days after work.
Then, see if 'absence makes your heart grow fonder'.

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