Like for Love

Liking a friend is authentic; it simply is a smaller desire to connect than love. But in the matter of intimate relationships, no one would rather be liked than loved. So, the question you must ask yourself, if you are in a relationship where you are the only one giving love is: Do I want to continue in an unbalanced relationship?

I do accept the idea that loving someone is completely a selfish act. Love is completely yours to give. However, when someone loves you back, it brings up a completely different feeling. Receiving love is more an act of security than it is passion.

A securely attached person can love without feeling as if love should be expected in return. This same securely attached person can receive love when you offer it. The person who can’t accept love, is anxious about love, or is confused about love has a problem with attachment in relationships.

Many relationships are made of anxious attachment and avoidant attachment types connected together in an unhealthy manner. One loves too much; the other can’t receive love fully. This relationship becomes a confusing mess.

Attachment disorder is not your fault, generally. Your basic adult attachment comes from the moment you came out of the womb. Did you get touched? Did you receive the kind of nurturing that felt healthy and secure? Did your parents neglect you? Did they leave you in your crib to cry for hours? Did you not comprehend their intention in loving you; such as in the way they scolded or corrected your behavior? Did something catastrophic happen as a child such as the death of a parent or sibling?

These basic questions can bring about a multitude of attachment feelings; some of anxiety (anxious attachment), some feelings of ambivalence (avoidant attachment), or simply a feeling of security. The book “Attached.” by Amir Levine is a potent example of how attachment disorder can disrupt relationship and ruin it, if not dealt with properly.

Many of my past relationships have been with Avoidantly Attached types. I believe that as a person who had been abandoned by my mother as a child of eight, I developed an anxious attachment disorder. This means when I am presented with love, I cling to it and probably have sucked the life out of it. The unfortunate problem with anxious attachment disorder is that it usually attracts avoidantly attached people.

The avoidant wants love but doesn’t want to accept the basic responsibilities of relationship. He/she wants to attach sometimes, but will pull away often for work, with moodiness, or simply by pushing you away with hurtful comments. I don’t believe that avoidant people are necessarily bad people. They are, however, hard to relate to in relationship. They make it very difficult to feel any kind of security. They do this, perhaps, because they don’t know how to create any kind of secure attachment for themselves.

I can go out with someone now and recognize this avoidant or anxious attachment and realize that “like” is about the most I’ll ever feel with this person. This perception is a great knowledge to have when looking for a mate. I believe, realizing early on in the mating ritual the limitations of your combined personalities is a very rational behavior.

If you look for love in an irrational, passionate way, you will probably end up falling in love with someone who can’t love you back, which has been my experience a lot. That’s why one needs to take time to see if a person is capable of loving completely.

I have spent many years in therapy and with hypnosis techniques to change the anxious, gut response of my childhood behavior. Trust me, it is tedious, yet gratifying work. I now feel as if I can love completely without the need to absorb another person’s life into mine. I feel autonomous and strangely okay with the truth. In fact, I invite it way more often than avoid it.

If you haven’t read Amir Levine’s book, I’d recommend it highly. You will be pleasantly surprised how easy these unresponsive behaviors are to spot and avoid in your seeking for secure love.

Ultimately, you deserve to be loved completely. Don’t allow yourself to believe that you desire anything less.

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Bo Sebastian is a Hypnotherapist and Life & Health Coach, available for private sessions to QUIT SMOKING, Lose Weight, New Lap-Band Hypnosis for Weight Loss, CHANGE YOUR MIND, CHANGE YOUR LIFE! at 615-400-2334 or www.bosebastian.com.

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