Is It Love or Love Addiction?

Love is grand. It brings feelings of happiness, peace and excitement that just can't be compared to anything else. In fact, it's so nice that a lot of people say they can't live without it. It makes sense, right? Because being in love feels so good, you want to find that special someone to feel in love with. You can share these feelings together and it makes everything else seem like it's going to be okay. 

While love is grand, love addiction is bad. Love addiction is just what it sounds like. It's a dependency and reliance on love that goes overboard to a place of over-reliance. Love addiction means that it's difficult to be on your own because you rely too heavily on being in love in order to function normally. 

Remember that scene on Jerry Maguire when Tom Cruise shows up on Renee Zelweggers door and please for her to stay by saying "You complete me". Well, this Hollywood depiction is actually a really great example of love addiction. He needs her to function. And while it's romantic, it's not very healthy. Below are 5 other signs of love addiction.

Is it Love Addiction?

1) You Can't Be Alone. Everyone goes through bouts of being single. Sometimes it doesn't take long before you meet someone great and begin relationship. Other times it takes a while before you find someone. But if you get anxious about the thought of being single or go far out of your way to meet new people when you're single that's a big sign that you have difficulties being alone and need someone else to fill that hole inside. 

Solution: Recognize where the anxiety comes from. Look deep within yourself and look at all the good things about yourself. Give yourself self-affirmations likes "I'm strong, I'm capable and I'm independent" so that you don't feel like you need someone else. 

2) When You are Alone You Daydream about Mr/Mrs Right. Being alone isn't a bad thing. In fact, being single can be healthy for you because it allows you focus on yourself (hobbies, interests, new past-times, etc.) which is great for self-improvement. But if you feel uncomfortable being single and use the time to daydream about being in a relationship again, you may have crossed the line into love addiction. 

Solution: Use the time being single to improve yourself. Now that you're single you have time to pick up that old hobbie you used to do. You even have time to explore some new ones. Use the time to explore your interests and try new things. You'll find yourself falling in love with yourself before you fall in love.  

3) Your Expectations of a Partner Bend Easily. Everyone knows what they want in a relationship. And everyone knows that relationships take compromise . You just can't have everything you want. But love addicts bend their expectations easily in order to be in love. It doesn't matter who they're in a relationship with. They just want to be in a relationship. 

Solution: Take some time to consider what standards you have to have in a relationship and which ones are just preferences. It's okay to bed on the preferences but not on the necessary standards. 

4) You Talk About Being in Between Relationships Like Being in Between Jobs. Being in a relationship isn't like being in a job. You need a job in order to put bread on the table so you can live. But you don't need a relationship to live. You're perfectly alright by yourself. So if you find yourself bouncing from relationship to relationship like you'd bounce from job to job that's a strong sign that you're addicted to love. 

Solution: Next time you find yourself single stay there for a while. There's no rush to find a new relationship. And if you're doing some self-exploring (as mentioned in #2 above) you'll be enjoying yourself anyway. 

5) You've Had Several Relationships End Badly. As a result of bending expectations and needing to be in in a relationship you usually overlook red flags and begin relationships that you shouldn't have. And because you overlook these red flags you often find that your relationships end pretty badly. Sure, everyone has bad experiences in relationships but for some reason they seem to find you like a magnet. 

Solution: Don't overlook the red flags. Since you don't have to be in love all the time you don't have to be in relationships that don't meet your expectations. Not only will the ensure that you have fewer bad breakups this will also ensure that the ones you start will be better (and one may not end in a breakup at all). 

Love Addiction is Bad For You and Your Partner

Being in love is one of the most wonderful things in the world. But if you're relying too heavily on being in love it can be detrimental to you and your partner. It's detrimental to you because it makes you incapable of carrying on normally without someone else. It's also detrimental to your partner because it feels suffocating to them. And after a while, they'll begin to resent the over-reliance on them and they may even begin to retaliate by withdrawing or checking out completely. 

So when you find that Mr. or Mrs. Right that you just can't imagine being without, don't forget to ask yourself "Is it love or love addiction? ".


  1. Thank Q said...:

    This is great! I've been in this situation before with someone who smothered me during the early part of the relationship. After a conversation she backed off and we thrived at that point. When love turns into dependency it can become a problem.

  1. Suzie A. said...:

    I really really like this post Aaron. You're right, sometimes in love we get borderline obsessed, especially when we think we've found THE ONE or what in our minds is the one. We get so caught up in moment that we forget to take a step back and enjoy the process. Great post!

  1. Marrie said...:

    Too often people are more in love with the idea of love than than their actual partner! Love the message in this post! I think it should serve as a reality check for many...especially people in their 20's who still hold romantic ideas of love and insecurities about being "alone".

  1. Tavia Cruz said...:

    Love addiction doesn’t start overnight, it actually takes time. This is one problem that can lead to uncertainty, fears such as rejection, betrayal, lack of love, and feeling of "not being good enough" in the relationship. If there is a case of love addiction in your relationship, you should try to control or deal with it especially if their problem has been present for a while. If you don’t deal with it and both of you end up breaking up, the person who was addicted may do something unexpected just to ensure that you don’t end up happy with another person. This is always because they lost themselves in the relationship so much that they can’t move on after a break up.

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