True Love vs. Infatuation
But does this love fade eventually? How long does it last?
Of course, there are no guarantees in life, but it could be said that true love will continue as long as both parties are able to communicate intimately with one another. Consistency can strengthen a bond and deepen a relationship.
Is true love simply a matter of being turned on when around one’s significant other or of having great sex? What exactly does it feel like? Is the feeling substantial and long-lasting, or is it simply a temporary burst of excitement?
Is it a feeling of profound and steady contentment, of “living happily ever after” or is it a difficult journey fraught with challenges that can threaten the relationship?
It is important to make a distinction between true love and infatuation. The emotion of love is the entering of an altered state of mind, an exciting, intense experience, a high that is like running on adrenaline. Infatuation can engender many of these same feelings.
Two people may be intensely turned onto each other during infatuation but intimacy may be another matter. They tend to look at each other through rose colored glasses and often end up overwhelmed and disillusioned when reality sets in.
They may naïvely assume that this altered state of mind will last forever. Most likely they don’t have the relationship experience to know when true intimacy is lacking. Their relationship hasn’t yet been challenged by conflicts or differences with each other. Their distorted perceptions may cause a sense of false security.
Another important distinction between infatuation and true love is sex, or I should say the quality of it.
Confusion is inherent in the words we use to describe our sexual interactions. Saying that one was intimate with another implies a misunderstanding between emotional and mere physical intimacy.
Then there is the expression “making love” in which physical intimacy is confused with true love. An initial attraction, a feeling of desire and even great sex can imply more of a relationship than there actually is.
Because of this confusion, it is better not to conflate true love or emotional intimacy with mere attraction, desire or sex. Even satisfying sex does not guarantee a great relationship or emotional intimacy. They are two very different beasts indeed!
The reason for this distinction is that emotional bonding and sharing are quite a bit harder to achieve than the pleasure and excitement associated with sex.
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