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What is love?
September 29, 1999
2:51 pm
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AlDog
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Hi, I'm a 30 year old woman and never been in love. I have had 3 serious relationships with 3 outstanding/terrific men. I stayed with them trying to force love. Wanting it, trying to obtain it, but never finding it. I've never had those "butterfly feelings" about anyone. Is there something wrong with me? I have always excused my failed relationships and lack of love by saying, "I just haven't found the right guy yet"....but deep down, I don't think that I am capable of loving. My parents are wonderful. They love me unconditionally and have always been suportive of me. But growing up, we never talked about feelings. I never revealed school girl crushes with family & rarely with friends. It was almost like I didn't want to reveal myself or loose control. This behavior has followed me all my life. I don't share my deep feelings because I cannot recognize them myself (therefore, I cant verbalize them). Do I understand what love is? Do I love, but just don't know it. My 3 breakups have been extremely difficult (I initiated all of them). Loss of a friend, confussion as to if the break-up was the right thing, lack of confidence in my decisions. I don't trust my feelings or know if I am interpreting them correctly. This lack of confidence in my feelings leads to a lack of confidence in my entire life. Although I have absolutely no reason to have a low self esteem, I do because I want emotions, love, hate, but I don't have them. I am wacky and fixing myself dominates my life and prevents me from being content and joyful. What do I do?

September 29, 1999
3:25 pm
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Anonymous
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You sound emotionally crippled and need to do some emotional releasment work with a therapist Aldog. You are numb, simply not feeling, this means you are not participating fully in your life for fear of losing control or whatever other issues you are shoving down. See a therapist and talk here to get to the bottom of it. I am sorry that you numbness has been a way of life for you. It was for me for a period of time when i suffered a great loss because i refused to grieve the loss thinking this would keep me attached to that person. Have you had any losses or tragedies in your life as a younger person, perhaps a child?
blessings

September 29, 1999
6:32 pm
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Aldog. It seems that some of us shut down our feelings as a means of avoiding feeling emotional pain. The problem with this defence is that we then cannot feel the positive emotions of joy, passion, elation etc.

I would suggest the possibility that somewhere in your past you underwent a painful experience, a trauma, that resulted in your unconscious choice to 'wall' your feelings up.

For me, my life has been a journey of self-discovery that has enabled me to have some small degree of control over the painful emotional memories - memories that often are unconsciously provoked by thoughts and external sensory input. I am able to achieve this now without shutting the whole emotional 'shop' down.

A therapist is just one tool in the tool box on your journey of self-discovery. There are many others.

If you really want to discuss 'what is love?' as opposed to 'how do I experience my feelings?' then please join us on the Social Issues BB in the 'Confusing warm fuzzy feelings with love' thread.

September 29, 1999
6:33 pm
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VRJ
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Try reading 'he's scared, she's scared'and read your own post over for clues. Blessings

September 30, 1999
8:06 pm
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pinion
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You sound pretty much like I was, although I did have the odd crush but they always flattened out pretty quickly. I put it down to the fact that my head has always ruled my heart rather than vice versa. I know I am not emotionally crippled and have never suffered a major trauma, I just think I am a little over analytical.

Something for you to consider, as I did, is do you want kids. I did and married. I am not "romantically in love" like some other people might be but I love him according to my bond as Cordellia said in King Lear. As for my kids, I am absolutely, madly in love with them, always have been and always will be.

Was it the Greeks who had the three words for love Eros, Philos and Agape. Think I am pretty cool on the Philos and Agape although Eros has never really rated highly for me.

As for your situation, work out what you want be it romance, a family, a career, a vocation, travel, or a combination between them and then make it happen for yourself. Perhaps their is a Mr perfect around the corner or perhaps not. Focus on what you want out of life rather than what you think is expected of you and try to make it happen.

October 1, 1999
1:31 pm
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Delilah
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When I was young I never knew my father, and mother had a boyfriend who was like a father to me. I really loved him. When I was about 10 he left her. It was a hard experience for us all. As a result I have never been able to open up to anybody in the same way. I think if you try you might be able to remember a repressed memory that is at the root of your problem like mine. Everyone has had good ideas and you should them until you find one that works for you. If not you should just settle for the closest thing to love you a can find.

GOOD LUCK!!!

October 3, 1999
1:47 pm
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Anonymous
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Afraid to love is the problem, usually because of past loss of love.

October 4, 1999
8:45 am
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Brittainy
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Hi, you can only love someone if you love yourself. I know it is hard as I really hate myself at the moment, but with regular therapy I'm hoping that I will start to love again. Good luck. Keep the messages coming in

October 4, 1999
4:16 pm
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Anonymous
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Thats a hard understanding to come to Brittany, especially when you use the word HATE. We love you. blessings

October 5, 1999
10:27 am
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Brittainy
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Hi tears, thanks for the reply. Yes I do hate myself because I have been forced to believe it. In reality I'm kind, caring and understanding, maybe I have to look at some of my good points to enable me to like myself. Take care Brittainy

October 5, 1999
1:38 pm
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AlDog
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You are right! I don't think I know how to love because I don't love myself. I don't hate myself, but I don't think I'm anything special either. If I am judgemental of myself it makes me judgemental of others. I'm always looking to improve myself and therefore always looking at other people's faults. It is hard to love someone when you pick them apart. I need to learn to accept myself for who I am. Everyone has faults, but that is what creates individuality. I'm working to embrace my whole self, don't pick at the minor stuff.

October 5, 1999
2:55 pm
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Anonymous
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so true aldog, i know what you mean about the self criticism and brittainy you just expressed three very beautiful qualities in a human being, kind, caring and understanding.....apply this kindness, understanidng and caring to yourself, i know what it is like to give this to others and only be stepped on in return. YOU come first friend

October 5, 1999
4:46 pm
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sjready
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I for along time use to think that I wasn't worthy of love. I never knew that it wasn't equated to the physical union. I've just recently discovered that. I'm a single mother with two sons,and my love for them is unconditional. I just went in the oposite direction of what I was accustom to as a child. But that hasn't helped me as far as men are concerned. I had to come to the realization for myself that I wanted and deserved more. Someone that I could talk to. Well, I I may have someone that I'm spiritually and mentally attracted to, but he doesn't live in the same area as I do. This for me is a first, usually it is a physical attraction. It makes me uncomfortable to even think that I am so attracted to him on this level. But I've come to believe that this is were love would start.

October 6, 1999
7:53 am
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Brittainy
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Hi everyone, hope you are all ok. I've just started a Psychology course and it is really helping me learn more about myself. Life is a pain at times, but, by reading your messages, it helps me to remain strong and one day I hope I can love myself. You are all worth loving. Take care

October 12, 1999
4:41 pm
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curiousP
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can i ask the simple question: What is love?????? I know what it means to me...but sometimes its confusing.

October 12, 1999
5:00 pm
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CuriousP. This is a very good question. We are grappling with this question on the Confusing warm fuzzy feelings with Love! Thread on the Social Issues BB. Click on Social Issues at top of previous page to get there.

October 12, 1999
7:11 pm
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Anonymous
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WE ARE ALL GLAD TO HEAR THAT YOU ARE FEELING MORE OPTOMISTIC BRITTANY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BELIEVE ME WHEN YOU GET TO THE OTHER SIDE OF PAIN THERE IS SO MUCH BEAUTY AND JOY...I AM JUST IN THAT TRANSITION PERIOD AND I FEEL ALL TINGLY WRITING THIS NOW.
ITS VERY HARD FOR ME TO EXPLAIN TO YOU, BUT FROM LIFE EXPERIENCE, SUFFERING AND THE HARD LESSONS WE LEARN FROM WHAT "LOVE IS NOT" WE HAVE THIS INVALUABLE STRENGTHENING OF OUR LIFE FORCE, MIND AND SOUL THAT SEEMS TO TAKE US TO ALL THINGS THAT LOVE IS. I AM NO LONGER LOOKING AT WHAT I LACK BUT WHAT I HAVE, I AM NO LONGER SEEING WHAT OTHERS DO TO ME BUT WHAT I LET THEM DO TO ME, I AM NO LONGER FEELING LIKE A VICTIM BUT LIKE AN EMPOWERED WOMAN, LIFE REALLY OPENS UP, PEOPLE SENSE IT IN YOU AND YOU NO LONGER ATTRACT NEGATIVE EXPREIENCES OR PEOPLE IN YOUR LIFE IN BUSINESS OR IN PERSONAL, THERE IS A INTELLIGENT FORCE IN THIS UNIVERSE OF WHICH WE ARE A MAJOR PART AND IT RESPONDS TO YOUR THOUGHTS LIKE A FAITHFUL DOG TO HIS MASTER..HMM BAD ANALOGY.WELL I THINK YOU UNDERSTAND A LITTLE, A LOT OF WHAT I AM SAYING AND FEELING IS SO HARD TO PUT INTO EARTLY WORDS AS IT IS A PROCESS THAT IS REALLY EARNED AND IS INTANGIBLE IN ITS CORE.
BUT IT RESPONDS SO WELL TO LOVE AND FORGIVENESS OF SELF AND OTHERS...I RECOMMEND THAT EVEYRONE READ "MANIFESTING YOUR DESTINY" BY dR WAYNE dYER..BLESSINGS ALL..:):):):):):):):):):)):-

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