So many people often ask this question. I have even seen this particular question a topic for discussion on a Facebook Post. When I thought about what love is to me I was stumped.
Fundamentally Love is an emotion, it’s a way of feeling about something or particularly someone. I often see children and parents, couples, brothers and sisters, grandparents showing love to each other. You can just feel that there is a connection between them. But I don’t understand that. It seems alien to me.
I grew up equating love with pain and abuse. The only way I could get the attention I craved was to become highly sexualized in my behaviour. But what I got wasn’t love, not real unconditional love. I can remember as a young teenager, being quite flirtatious and using my developed body to get attention. Unfortunately it got me the wrong kind of attention. But the funny thing was I was extremely shy and introverted as well.
I was an extremely fearful and obedient child. But as adolescence came around I realised my efforts thus far were not what got the results I felt I needed. Hence the rebellious nature.
Underneath all of this I had little sense of self-preservation. I put myself in situations of danger frequently. I took risks that most people wouldn’t even contemplate.
As an adult, I have been in 3 marriages and a few long-term relationships. And I am not at all sure if these relationships were based on love. A number were abusive in some way, control and manipulation often a common theme.
I don’t understand the concept of love between humans.
I know my father loved me and I loved him. We became close when I was an adult. And when he passed away in 2004 we were best friends. I see my current husband and his daughter having the same connection as I did with my own father.
Funnily enough I have been able to connect emotionally with animals. I have had a few pets, mostly dogs, except for my most recent baby; a black cat. I find I can give my all with animals and know that they will never hurt me in the way people have. The love my pets and I have felt, and still feel, is unconditional. I do understand love but equating humans and love together, is so totally beyond me.
Love can be a good thing, it is not meant to be painful or abusive, is should never have conditions. Love is nurturing and supportive, it is about acceptance and intimacy, and I am not talking about sex. Intimacy is about being able to connect on a level with someone where you feel comfortable enough to be you, the real you. You don’t have to pretend to be someone you are not, you shouldn’t have to hide your true self.
Love yourself enough so that you will never settle for anything else other than unconditional love.