Are you afraid of love?
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02-09-2014, 03:44 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
I think love means different things at different times in a relationship. One of the difficulties of the English language is that we use love to describe a lot of different emotions that other languages would separate out. Think about the love someone has for their parents (which changes over time) verses the love for a spouse/ partner (which also changes over time).

At some point romantic love becomes a decision, not just an emotion. I chose to love my wife and still do, even though we are starkly different in many ways, especially in the area of religion. I choose to keep loving her and committing to her, even though it is hard at times. I have noticed something occasionally in arranged marriages. I am not advocating these, by the way, but I have seen some of them work out. In these the "commitment" love seems to have come first and the "romantic" love came later. Of course there is a strong cultural element in play as well.

I am not going to tell you that you should wait for the right person, or you will "know" when the right one comes along. You probably won't. You will have to weigh up the way you feel against the risks involved in becoming closer to that person.

Making that decision is not a cold calculation though. It is scary, exciting, agonizing, comfortable, easy and hard all at the same time. It is also not necessarily a single decision, but can be a process of giving a little bit more at a time. I found I learnt more about myself, in many ways, than I did about my wife and that is very hard to deal with at times. I am not sure if that is similar to the fear WeAreTheCosmos referred to or not. Ultimately we all have a dark side and that is OK. A deeper relationship with another individual can actually help you cope with and manage it. It forces you to confront your negative traits and what seemed to you alone as an insurmountable mountain can become a small hill when you are being loved and supported by another person. The whole process started again when I had kids.

In my rarely humble opinion, the biggest thing is to be with someone who is prepared to work at the relationship with you. Otherwise it becomes too imbalanced. Also, commitment doesn't mean slavish devotion. It means sharing in a partnership. Kind of like starting a business. If your partner makes a mistake and loses a contract, you don't immediately dissolve the company. You accept the mistake for what it was and learn from it together. If you find out they are embezzling, you still get the hell out before you lose everything.

That is kind of how it was for me, and I am missing out huge chunks of the story for the sake of brevity. Anyway, choosing to love my wife has been, and still is, a great journey- not always easy, not always fun, not always conducive to seeing myself positively, but always worth it in the long run. And I agree with Hobbitgirl that you miss out on the great stuff if you don't take chances.
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02-09-2014, 03:57 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
Yep. I think "emotionally unavailable" is the technical term. Thumbsup

"I feel as though the camera is almost a kind of voyeur in Mr. Beans life, and you just watch this bizarre man going about his life in the way that he wants to."

-Rowan Atkinson
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02-09-2014, 04:54 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
I am not afraid of love - I just gave it up years ago.

After growing up with parents that couldn't or wouldn't show any love it wasn't something I really expected in my life.

My first real love happened when I was 19 - and I did love him. We weren't together long but that was his choice. I thought about him for years afterward.

I loved my first husband, maybe not with quite the same intensity but we were young and I was cautious and he had addiction problems. He died three years after we started dated (and were married by then). At that point, I pretty much gave up on having real love in my life. I am not sad about it any more - it's just how it is and I am okay with that.

I must admit that I am puzzled and a bit skeptical when around those happy, can't stay away from each other couples. It just isn't part of my reality and hasn't been for a long, long time.

See here they are the bruises some were self-inflicted and some showed up along the way. - JF
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02-09-2014, 04:58 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 03:44 PM)GodlessRN Wrote:  I think love means different things at different times in a relationship. One of the difficulties of the English language is that we use love to describe a lot of different emotions that other languages would separate out. Think about the love someone has for their parents (which changes over time) verses the love for a spouse/ partner (which also changes over time).

At some point romantic love becomes a decision, not just an emotion. I chose to love my wife and still do, even though we are starkly different in many ways, especially in the area of religion. I choose to keep loving her and committing to her, even though it is hard at times. I have noticed something occasionally in arranged marriages. I am not advocating these, by the way, but I have seen some of them work out. In these the "commitment" love seems to have come first and the "romantic" love came later. Of course there is a strong cultural element in play as well.

I am not going to tell you that you should wait for the right person, or you will "know" when the right one comes along. You probably won't. You will have to weigh up the way you feel against the risks involved in becoming closer to that person.

Making that decision is not a cold calculation though. It is scary, exciting, agonizing, comfortable, easy and hard all at the same time. It is also not necessarily a single decision, but can be a process of giving a little bit more at a time. I found I learnt more about myself, in many ways, than I did about my wife and that is very hard to deal with at times. I am not sure if that is similar to the fear WeAreTheCosmos referred to or not. Ultimately we all have a dark side and that is OK. A deeper relationship with another individual can actually help you cope with and manage it. It forces you to confront your negative traits and what seemed to you alone as an insurmountable mountain can become a small hill when you are being loved and supported by another person. The whole process started again when I had kids.

In my rarely humble opinion, the biggest thing is to be with someone who is prepared to work at the relationship with you. Otherwise it becomes too imbalanced. Also, commitment doesn't mean slavish devotion. It means sharing in a partnership. Kind of like starting a business. If your partner makes a mistake and loses a contract, you don't immediately dissolve the company. You accept the mistake for what it was and learn from it together. If you find out they are embezzling, you still get the hell out before you lose everything.

That is kind of how it was for me, and I am missing out huge chunks of the story for the sake of brevity. Anyway, choosing to love my wife has been, and still is, a great journey- not always easy, not always fun, not always conducive to seeing myself positively, but always worth it in the long run. And I agree with Hobbitgirl that you miss out on the great stuff if you don't take chances.

I appreciate your insight.

I don't believe in marriage, to be honest. I think it's one of those societal norms that we all think we need to do to be fulfilled or complete. And we really don't. That said, there are marriages that seem to work but I don't want to work at a relationship. I have a job and when I come home, I don't want to take on another job. I know this sounds cold maybe?

But love ...I have felt it and still want that with someone but the last guy? He wanted more. Marriage. As if this is the finish line for people to express their love entirely.

The divorce rate is high...why is that? If marriage is a good idea, why are so many people jumping ship?

This is my stuff lol...it's nothing you said. But I'm often mystified by people who stay with one person, no matter what.

It's not like a business. A business doesn't require my heart. Sad

Be true to yourself. Heart
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02-09-2014, 05:01 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 01:36 PM)Deidre32 Wrote:  
(02-09-2014 01:27 PM)Hobbitgirl Wrote:  You go outside with the potential of getting hit by a car. Why risk that? Because life locked in your house to avoid the danger would be miserable. Life is about the risk. If you stay super guarded your whole life you're going to miss out on all the great stuff. Seriously.

That's very true and maybe I'm not afraid of going outside because I do it often. I date a lot but hesitate to get too close and then...off to the next guy. Thus, never working on moving past it.

This is helpful. :-) TY!

I basically lived the mother of all train wrecks that everyone fears. I had been betrayed in so many ways, disrespected, treated affluently and taken advantage of. I felt myself becoming scared and anxious and even a bit bitter after it all. I went to see someone and I have learnt a lot. I learnt a bunch of wonderful things about myself from over the years, I learnt how my 'blind' trust benefit me despite a broken relationship- I've learnt about the positive things the broken relationship gave me that I wouldn't have otherwise. I am thankful for my life experience, because I can choose to be.

There are so many unknown things that could happen to anyone- in our careers, our health, our relationships. If something feels good and I see no seemingly immoral aspect of what I am participating in then I am going to go for it. Not necessarily dive into it, but I would hate to pass something potential life-changing or extremely wonderful when I already know I can make it through the awful. There are so many (incl. healthy) benefits to a deep and close relationship that I think it's a life experience I can appreciate indulging in. There is too much real pain to worry about maybe actually getting the real pain. And if that happens, push past it and live again. There's always tomorrow until there is no tomorrow (That's a good thing). Smile
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02-09-2014, 05:08 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 04:58 PM)Deidre32 Wrote:  
(02-09-2014 03:44 PM)GodlessRN Wrote:  I think love means different things at different times in a relationship. One of the difficulties of the English language is that we use love to describe a lot of different emotions that other languages would separate out. Think about the love someone has for their parents (which changes over time) verses the love for a spouse/ partner (which also changes over time).

At some point romantic love becomes a decision, not just an emotion. I chose to love my wife and still do, even though we are starkly different in many ways, especially in the area of religion. I choose to keep loving her and committing to her, even though it is hard at times. I have noticed something occasionally in arranged marriages. I am not advocating these, by the way, but I have seen some of them work out. In these the "commitment" love seems to have come first and the "romantic" love came later. Of course there is a strong cultural element in play as well.

I am not going to tell you that you should wait for the right person, or you will "know" when the right one comes along. You probably won't. You will have to weigh up the way you feel against the risks involved in becoming closer to that person.

Making that decision is not a cold calculation though. It is scary, exciting, agonizing, comfortable, easy and hard all at the same time. It is also not necessarily a single decision, but can be a process of giving a little bit more at a time. I found I learnt more about myself, in many ways, than I did about my wife and that is very hard to deal with at times. I am not sure if that is similar to the fear WeAreTheCosmos referred to or not. Ultimately we all have a dark side and that is OK. A deeper relationship with another individual can actually help you cope with and manage it. It forces you to confront your negative traits and what seemed to you alone as an insurmountable mountain can become a small hill when you are being loved and supported by another person. The whole process started again when I had kids.

In my rarely humble opinion, the biggest thing is to be with someone who is prepared to work at the relationship with you. Otherwise it becomes too imbalanced. Also, commitment doesn't mean slavish devotion. It means sharing in a partnership. Kind of like starting a business. If your partner makes a mistake and loses a contract, you don't immediately dissolve the company. You accept the mistake for what it was and learn from it together. If you find out they are embezzling, you still get the hell out before you lose everything.

That is kind of how it was for me, and I am missing out huge chunks of the story for the sake of brevity. Anyway, choosing to love my wife has been, and still is, a great journey- not always easy, not always fun, not always conducive to seeing myself positively, but always worth it in the long run. And I agree with Hobbitgirl that you miss out on the great stuff if you don't take chances.

I appreciate your insight.

I don't believe in marriage, to be honest. I think it's one of those societal norms that we all think we need to do to be fulfilled or complete. And we really don't. That said, there are marriages that seem to work but I don't want to work at a relationship. I have a job and when I come home, I don't want to take on another job. I know this sounds cold maybe?

But love ...I have felt it and still want that with someone but the last guy? He wanted more. Marriage. As if this is the finish line for people to express their love entirely.

The divorce rate is high...why is that? If marriage is a good idea, why are so many people jumping ship?

This is my stuff lol...it's nothing you said. But I'm often mystified by people who stay with one person, no matter what.

It's not like a business. A business doesn't require my heart. Sad

I'm not really fussed about marriage either way. Take it or leave it. I think part of the reason it doesnt work like it used to is people don't work at it like they used to. Which is both good and bad. Good because people arent stuck in a horrible relationship, bad because problems that could be solved are ignored due to the thought its just easier to leave.

As I've said before I've seen both, mum had several failed marriages but my mums parents were married for nearly 60 years and were super happy. They had their ups and downs but they loved each other and worked through it.

If youre in a relationship that feels like a job its definitely not a good relationship. Sure you have to work at a relationship, but its not the same kind work as a business (at least it certainly shouldnt seem that way)

As for what godlessrn said I completely agree. The feeling of love changes with time, it becomes deeper and more concrete, I personally love that about love.
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02-09-2014, 05:10 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 05:01 PM)LadyJane Wrote:  
(02-09-2014 01:36 PM)Deidre32 Wrote:  That's very true and maybe I'm not afraid of going outside because I do it often. I date a lot but hesitate to get too close and then...off to the next guy. Thus, never working on moving past it.

This is helpful. :-) TY!

I basically lived the mother of all train wrecks that everyone fears. I had been betrayed in so many ways, disrespected, treated affluently and taken advantage of. I felt myself becoming scared and anxious and even a bit bitter after it all. I went to see someone and I have learnt a lot. I learnt a bunch of wonderful things about myself from over the years, I learnt how my 'blind' trust benefit me despite a broken relationship- I've learnt about the positive things the broken relationship gave me that I wouldn't have otherwise. I am thankful for my life experience, because I can choose to be.

There are so many unknown things that could happen to anyone- in our careers, our health, our relationships. If something feels good and I see no seemingly immoral aspect of what I am participating in then I am going to go for it. Not necessarily dive into it, but I would hate to pass something potential life-changing or extremely wonderful when I already know I can make it through the awful. There are so many (incl. healthy) benefits to a deep and close relationship that I think it's a life experience I can appreciate indulging in. There is too much real pain to worry about maybe actually getting the real pain. And if that happens, push past it and live again. There's always tomorrow until there is no tomorrow (That's a good thing). Smile

Reminds me of a great quote:

[Image: 3aaeb84ae2154d49c054f19d5e54ff2c.jpg]
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02-09-2014, 05:18 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
I appreciate your insight.

I don't believe in marriage, to be honest. I think it's one of those societal norms that we all think we need to do to be fulfilled or complete. And we really don't. That said, there are marriages that seem to work but I don't want to work at a relationship. I have a job and when income home, I don't want to take on another job. I know this sounds cold maybe?

But love ...I have felt it and still want that with someone but the last guy? He wanted more. Marriage. As if this is the finish line for people to express their love entirely.

The divorce rate is high...why is that? If marriage is a good idea, why are so many people jumping ship?

This is my stuff lol...it's nothing you said. But I'm often mystified by people who stay with one person, no matter what.

It's not like a business. A business doesn't require my heart. Sad
[/quote]

I know what you mean about the marriage thing- we got married mainly to keep my wife's fundamentalist parents happy. Personally I don't really find the rings and name changing stuff that important. I guess there are as many reasons why marriages fail as why they succeed. I would not get too hung up on the marriage part. The relationship is more important.

You and I are all different and maybe this is just you and that is OK. Absolutely OK. This is me and it works (mostly) for me. If you don't want to work at a relationship I am certainly not going to tell you that is wrong. I do think you miss out on some experiences, but you probably have others that I won't have so it all balances out in the end. But your initial post did sound like you feel you are missing something.

Can't agree with you on the business thing though, but then I am a nurse. If someone is a nurse and their heart is not invested, then they are in the wrong job. I think I tend to think like that about everything though. Smile Really, the business thing was just an inadequate analogy. Working on a relationship is very different because of the greater emotional investment.

If having more lighter relationships keeps you happy, go for it and make it work for you.
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02-09-2014, 05:41 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 11:22 AM)Deidre32 Wrote:  Is anyone afraid of love and commitment? I broke up with my recent bf because he seemed interested in marriage. We weren't together all that long but I was falling in love. And it frightened me.

I date a lot...not afraid of that. But when things look to be progressing towards love...I sabotage the relationship somehow. Some way.

Wondering if you do feel this way or have in the past and how did you overcome it? Do we need love? Consider

Afraid of love and commitment? No. Afraid of entering into either of those where if I don't do, or change, something specific, about my behavior &/or my way of thinking, those things would be denied or taken away from me? Yes! This is what you get, girly girl! If you don't like it, get dressed, and leave; no hard feelings!
Love? Love doesn't have to be unconditional, but it can't be non negotiable, either!
Need love? No! We need sex, occasionally, and rarely, we need a soft lady to lie with us.... to talk to... to carress...
But, at some point, the ladies/gents won't want to lay down with you! There is a time limit! You get old! Too old to fuck, too old to give a shit about "the game". I'm prolly crazy, but it is at that time in your life, when "fuck" has nothing to do with it, that you're most likely to find it without any hickups!
If you can still do so? Play the game; you might get lucky! After you can't play anymore? Find it at your leisure!
No one is guaranteed to be ready to stop playing if they haven't already played the game 6,000 times already!

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02-09-2014, 06:16 PM
RE: Are you afraid of love?
(02-09-2014 05:01 PM)LadyJane Wrote:  
(02-09-2014 01:36 PM)Deidre32 Wrote:  That's very true and maybe I'm not afraid of going outside because I do it often. I date a lot but hesitate to get too close and then...off to the next guy. Thus, never working on moving past it.

This is helpful. :-) TY!

I basically lived the mother of all train wrecks that everyone fears. I had been betrayed in so many ways, disrespected, treated affluently and taken advantage of. I felt myself becoming scared and anxious and even a bit bitter after it all. I went to see someone and I have learnt a lot. I learnt a bunch of wonderful things about myself from over the years, I learnt how my 'blind' trust benefit me despite a broken relationship- I've learnt about the positive things the broken relationship gave me that I wouldn't have otherwise. I am thankful for my life experience, because I can choose to be.

There are so many unknown things that could happen to anyone- in our careers, our health, our relationships. If something feels good and I see no seemingly immoral aspect of what I am participating in then I am going to go for it. Not necessarily dive into it, but I would hate to pass something potential life-changing or extremely wonderful when I already know I can make it through the awful. There are so many (incl. healthy) benefits to a deep and close relationship that I think it's a life experience I can appreciate indulging in. There is too much real pain to worry about maybe actually getting the real pain. And if that happens, push past it and live again. There's always tomorrow until there is no tomorrow (That's a good thing). Smile

This. You have no idea how this has resonated. (And I cried reading it)
A bit about me...I was in two abusive relationships, back to back...one was physical. I'm over these men. It isn't that. But I thought I loved them and showed them that. So, when they treated me the way they did, it was shocking. These guys are educated, articulate ...great careers. And I consider myself a smart enough woman to know better. I have a good career, I'm confident in other ways, but I allowed not one, but two men to cheat, lie and abuse me. And yes, I learned a lot about myself but I'm not over what they did. Reading your words here, idk why but I realize, I'm not over what they did.

You never think you will allow someone to strike you. Or manipulate you. Part time, I help women who have been abused. It changed my life and I no longer judge anyone who is in an abusive relationship.

You're right in that it taught me a lot but I'm also afraid to love because of those two men. And the worst part is they are most likely off hurting other women. Sad

Your words here really helped me admit to myself that I'm not over what they did. But I guess it's not fair to anticipate that other men will hurt me in some way. (but I do)

Thank you. <3

Be true to yourself. Heart
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