Two people – a man and a woman walk into a pub on a dark, cold, November’s winter evening.
They order comfort food fish and chips to fight the freezing cold outside. They have strong feelings for one another which some might call being in love. The love is intensified as the woman is relocating to another country to a new job the following summer. As they eat the man jokingly suggests that they will lose contact with one another and that eventually neither will mind this happening. The woman falls silent and does not finish her food. She feels betrayed and angry but cannot say so. Six months later the relationship has drifted apart.
There is something dreadful about thinking of someone you love today and who you would do anything for, but who might in the future not merit you calling them on the phone or crossing the road to say hello.
In fact you would avoid them. Love Delusion.
Love is a delusion. What is the truth? Does this person who you love actually exist? Are they really that perfect? When you introduce your love object to a friend they just see them as an average person. Is it simply your over active in love imagination that creates the perfect mate? The only way love can flourish and exist is if the other person has a similar reciprocating delusion. As long as both people have a similar love delusion about one another then the love can continue. It seems lovers would prefer to be wrong about the other person and be in love, rather than disbelieve the other and not be in love.
This disappearance of love haunts us, but still does not stop us looking for love. This can also happen when our parents die. The unconditional parental love dies too. In resolving our need for love we do not necessarily resolve our need to long for love. If we have been well loved in childhood our longing for love desire might be satisfied. If not – whatever our relationship situation the longing for love continues. Love Delusion.
To be in love and to be loved – fully understood for who we are is a delusion. The other always has a version of us that is not the same as our own. This becomes more pronounced the more realistic and everyday the love becomes. But we also expect this from our parents even as mature adults. In a good parenting relationship in the early years of life the baby’s needs are so primitive that perhaps the parent can fully understand the baby more than the baby can. Is this the repeat we wish for? To be fully understood is what we long for: to be loved unconditionally.
Perhaps the best we can do is to understand who we are, and communicate this to the other so that they can love us from this understanding.
Copyright Adrian Scott North London Counsellor Blog 2015
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This article is designed to provoke argument and critique.