Are you in love or are you just infatuated? Those feelings aren't interchangeable, but it's easy to get them mixed up – especially if you've never experienced real love before. Sometimes, infatuation even seems like it's the better choice. It's all about heat, fire, passion, and excitement. Infatuation is all about waiting for the phone to ring and always wondering when you're going to hear from the person. Love, on the other hand, has a stability that's easy to mistake for boring, but again, only if you've never experienced it.
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Love is a Choice, Lust is a Reaction
You may feel an instant attraction to someone and fall in love with them later, absolutely. However, although we don't choose who we love, who attracts us, we do make the choice to fall in love. It's a conscious thing, is what I mean. Lust is a chemical reaction. It can hit you anywhere and anyone can make you feel it -- even someone you're only attracted to in that moment.
Love is Needing Someone Because You Love Them
When you love someone, you truly do need them. You need someone because you love them, because they make you happier, because they fulfill something inside of you. You love them because there's something about them that you absolutely must have in your life.
Infatuation is Loving Someone Because You Need Them
On the flip side of the coin, infatuation is more like loving someone because you need them. The need is the most prominent emotion, if you get what I'm saying. Your feelings are based on a craving, almost, and something like that simply can't survive. It's won't thrive and grow.
Love Has a Solid Foundation, but Lust Fades
Lust is a little bit like a bottle rocket. It blows up hot but fast, and then it's all over. To kind of keep the analogy going better than I did up there, love is more like a rocket ship. It's capable of longer journeys. It's not quite so flimsy or fickle. Of course, you have to hope that your rocket doesn't explode or go soaring into the sun, but you get the point, yes? Right on!
Real Love Isn't All about Butterflies and Jitters
That's not to say that you can't experience butterflies and jitters when you're in love, of course, but they're different from the ones you feel when you're simply infatuated. Then, your butterflies are anxious, nervous, and unsure. They're a little manic because you don't know what's going to happen. With love, you're excited because you know exactly what's going to happen and you long for it.
Love is about Giving, Infatuation is about Taking
It's not always quite that simple, but for the most part, love and infatuation follow this trajectory. When you love someone, you want to give them so much. You want to give them everything. When you're infatuated with someone, you're much more interesting in taking everything they can give you ... and then asking for more.
Love Takes Time, Infatuation is Fast and Furious
Oh, love can be fast and furious sometimes, too, you got me. Still, it takes time to nourish. It grows over time, getting deeper and stronger. Infatuation is like a flash in a pan. It wears itself out eventually. It fades. You can never quite trust it.
Infatuation is Based around Sex, Love is Affection
Infatuation usually comes when a relationship is new and exciting. When you can't keep your hands off each other and sex is the main focus of your relationship. But love is a deep and intense affection that comes with time. Love is knowing you don't need sex to keep your relationship afloat.
Infatuation is Putting Someone above You
When we're starting out and completely infatuated with someone, we tend to put them on a pedestal so high we don't know how they ever found us. With infatuation comes the feelings that the other person is perfect. They have no flaws, can do no wrong, and we make them out to be someone they're not.
Love is when You're Equals
On the flip side to infatuation, love is when you view yourselves as equals. You realize no one is perfect but you still embrace their flaws because they make them who they are (and you hope they do the same with you). Being in love allows for mistakes to happen without the fear of no longer being perfect in the eyes of your someone.
It may take a while to find real love. And sometimes, of course, infatuation can turn into something deeper. What are your experiences with love versus infatuation?
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