How to recognize unconditional love?
Love is a very strange and mysterious feeling that is an inexhaustible source of inspiration for so many storytellers, poets, scientists and even ordinary mortals. Love is THE question that drives us because it doesn’t respond to any of the rules, it’s the result of many things that depend on each individual. To come back to the subject we’re interested in, let’s say in simple terms that there are two types of love: conditional love and unconditional love.
Conditional love isn’t free 💞
Conditional love doesn’t take anything away from the beauty of love. Let’s just say that it’s less absolute than unconditional love. Indeed, if your love is subject to a condition, it takes away a little something. We notice the other person’s qualities, but also their flaws too, and we love them with all that, but… we expect more or less consciously something in return: emotional security, a quality we’d miss, attention, time, filling an egocentric need, a material comfort, etc. In a way, and in a very trivial way, but without it being necessarily negative, conditional love is an exchange and a trade. It’s not free, we expect something in return from the love we give.
Unconditional love expects nothing ❤️🔥
Unconditional love knows no limits and expects nothing in return. As I said in the introduction, unconditional love is notably the love we have for our children, but it can also be found in couples. This love makes us love the other person’s qualities and flaws, without trying to change them. We love them without limits, with an absolute and uncontrollable love. We therefore accept their habit of throwing their shoes in the hallway, their love handles, their nose hairs and their selfishness too, for example. But it’s also a love that makes it easier to forgive. Infidelity, betrayal, wrongdoings and sometimes even violence are forgiven much more.
Does unconditional love exist?
Unconditional love is therefore a love that can be considered true, the most romantic of all. It’s quite rare to feel it and to find it. Nowadays, we tend to seek our individual and immediate pleasure, so this love that requires absolute dedication is quite unique, especially since it can generate a lot of suffering.
>>> You may be interested in this article: Why do couples no longer fight to save their relationships?
What are the limits of unconditional love?
According to specialists, unconditional love is born out of suffering: a lack of love and self-esteem. We then love the other person without limit because we’re satisfied with their presence alone, or because this love marks a deep disrespect for ourselves. An unconditional lover is also often an immature lover, someone who refuses to grow up and devotes themselves to their love for the other person in order to fall back into a parent/child relationship out of nostalgia or something lacking.
Unconditional love therefore has no limits, it’s in its very nature. This is what can make it absolute, but what can also make it destructive. By accepting and allowing everything, we’re also telling the other person, “Do whatever you want, hurt me if you wish, I’ll stay with you no matter what.” And that opens the door to an unhealthy and rather unfulfilling relationship. A truly toxic relationship in fact.
It's all about balance
Do you want to know how to define true love? Well, simply by having an equal relationship. Unconditional love can create an imbalance, an asymmetry. One may love more intensely than the other, and this love will cause suffering in the other partner. The person receiving this love may feel suffocated, or even feel that they’re not up to the task. The unconditional lover, on the other hand, may suffer from not being loved back as much, but also from being unable to grow and feel fulfilled outside the relationship.
⚖️ In order to be happy and fulfilling for everyone, a relationship therefore has to be balanced with both partners loving each other equally, respecting each other and accepting each other’s independence.
Passion or love? You’ll find out one day!
The thing about unconditional love is that it’s not so easy to control. Remember the early days when the relationship is in its infancy? At that precise moment, our brains are in unconditional love mode. It’s passion, everything is beautiful, and we accept and love the other person fully. Our rational brain comes knocking again several months later and presents us with reality in a new light. You now find the person you used to love to coo with on the sofa, sluggish and too indoorsy. Unbearable? Then you break up with them. Bearable? Then you’re on the right track!
The loves that last are those where there’s indulgence and why not a certain tenderness for the other person’s flaws, but the line isn’t crossed, there are limits: mutual respect, self-esteem.
In short, there’s no right way to love. In a relationship, communication, empathy and respect must always prevail in order for the relationship to be balanced, healthy and fulfilling. Unconditional love must therefore make you happy; if that’s not the case, then some introspection may be needed: Do you lack self-confidence? Do you have a childish side? Do you have difficulty setting your limits? Etc.
Editor’s note: It’s all about balance
In love, like anywhere else, it’s all about balance and communication. Each person must be able to blossom within their relationship and feel supported and loved for who they are, with their qualities and flaws. If your relationships are complicated, tumultuous, a source of suffering, and you’re unable to find your happiness, it’s time to ask yourself some questions. Where does this pattern come from? Why does it keep repeating itself? What do you expect from a relationship? Don’t wait to make an appointment with a psychologist in order to take stock if you feel something is wrong.
🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!
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