I wouldn't be like this if it wasn't love

Many BR readers have been perplexed by how in spite of the fact that they may have known someone for hours, days, weeks, or a few months, they can’t let go of memories of feeling good or the steadfast belief that the other party meant every word and action, so they persist in rehashing the memories and the beliefs, often making the time spent fantasising and ruminating greatly exceed the length of the actual involvement.

When this happens, you’re stuck on this fundamental belief that what you experienced only happens when you’re experiencing ‘love’. What you feel, see, and do during the involvement isn’t questioned and is assumed to be a response to it. Your mind cannot compute the fact that it wasn’t love, or at least not the beginning of a complete ‘ideal relationship’ forever and ever and ever. You may rationalise that even if it has been a short period of time, it’s because of the deep feelings between you, not Fast Forwarding or the presence of code amber and red behaviour.

When you’re stuck on these memories and beliefs, it can make you wonder:

– How could a Future Faker know what you want to hear?

– In fact, how could anyone who you didn’t know before becoming involved, know how to bring these feelings out of you without even knowing you for any great deal of time? It must mean something, surely?

– How could you feel ‘like this’, whether it’s high on the possibilities when you’re with them or miserable now that it’s over, and it not be symbolic of love? What is it then? You may have always believed that you’d only feel, act, and think a certain way if you were experiencing ‘true love’.

You then get stuck because you over-trust the over-correlation you make between your feelings, experiences, actions, hopes and expectations…and love.

It can feel like your mind and body is playing tricks on you. Ever assumed that a great sexual connection equals an emotional connection equals the making of a great relationship? Many readers end up remaining involved with someone to justify the fact that they had sex or a level of interest in the first place – the Justifying Zone. It’s like “There must be a good reason….I just need to find it!”

You take meaning from your actions. The thing is, of course all of our actions have meaning, it’s just that they don’t always have the meanings or weight that we attribute to them.

Some, for example, attribute post breakup pain and being unable to move on as a sign of how deeply the love is felt, but actually, how much pain you feel or how long you immerse yourself in living the breakup life is actually indicative of how you’re handling the situation and how you feel about you, especially if the relationship was unhealthy.

When you’re stuck on certain beliefs, you think and say stuff like:

“I wouldn’t be stuck unless….”

“I wouldn’t have done this unless…”

“I wouldn’t have believed this unless…”

“I wouldn’t have felt this unless…”

The uncomfortable truth is closer to this: These actions or lack thereof, are not a sign of love or even what you’re ‘owed’; they are a sign of your own unavailability. What are you avoiding?

We’re also back to the stubbornness I talked about in the last post – why keep believing something that doesn’t truly serve you and certainly isn’t reflected in results? Rather than admit that you made an error in judgement, or believed too easily, or that it was good while it lasted but it wasn’t meant to be for valid reasons, you want to blame yourself, or feel tricked out of a relationship you feel you’re owed. It’s persisting in holding onto these illusions about the other person, the circumstances, or even yourself that is disappointing you again and again and again.

Sometimes you feel excited, passionate, lustful, loving, caring, adoring, obsessive, jealous, possessive, careless, insecure, sexy, horny, trusting, admiring, and willing to take a chance, or willing to believe, or willing to be, do, and say certain things…and it’s nothing whatsoever to do with the ‘rightness’ of the situation or even the existence of ‘love’.

You are a person under your own command. That’s not to say that sometimes our minds and bodies don’t leap ahead, but it is just too great a leap to decide that what you say, do, and feel is intrinsically tied to the presence of love. When you make these assumptions about you, you’ll make them about others, and then forget to judge the situation or them by the truth of their actions consistently over time.

You feeling what you did or do is your feelings. They are not linked to an ex or current person on an index of believability. “Ooh I feel chemistry again…that’s 99 points on the believability index!”

The payoff of believing that you wouldn’t be being, doing, or feeling certain things ‘unless’ is that you don’t consider other possibilities. You don’t even consider the facts, which is why so many readers who are stuck, do their very best to avoid considering some far more obvious reasons why the relationship wasn’t going to be what they thought it was, regardless.

It’s like “Yeah they had partner already or yeah they lied or yeah I thought they were shady…and what? I felt and did these things so it was love so this stuff doesn’t matter.” Er, yes it frickin’ does. ‘Love’ or ‘lust’ is not some magic eraser. If you think you can feel something and shazam, problems gone, think again.

Contextually, what you feel is what you feel (although you may in time come to realise that what you’ve experienced isn’t the same type of love you’d feel in a healthier situation), but there isn’t the loving, mutual relationship to back up your beliefs, so it’s time to reassess what you believe to be true.

Yes you may well believe that you wouldn’t have said or done certain things ‘unless’, but the fact is that you did, and the unless part doesn’t stand up. You’re talking about a situation and a person in the past, which is only confirmation of the fact that the present and what happened subsequently isn’t reflective of what you’re holding onto.

Fact is, people don’t automatically know what you want to hear, but they soon find out by your receptiveness and then they know which tune to play. It doesn’t mean you’re ‘soul mates’.

Sometimes being high on the possibilities is about grabbing an opportunity to escape a life that you’re not happy with. Sometimes being miserable after the breakup, is about your relationship with you and often being angry at having to return to a life you don’t want.

If you have acted ‘crazy’, busted up your boundaries, turned a blind eye, and eroded your own values, that’s not out of love – that’s out of a lack of self-love and attempting to trade you for a reward.

When you’re ready to have a good, honest conversation with yourself, you will realise that you can feel, be, or act in certain ways and it not be out of love. This is especially the case if you 1) have low self-esteem and 2) have a relationship pattern that has been working against you.

Love is all about action, not just words and thinking. It’s also sustained and consistent action. Talk and the honeymoon period at the start of a relationship is cheap, but being in for the long haul and demonstrating love and commitment day after day, isn’t. If something you claim was love could be over in hours, days, weeks, or months, it didn’t have the legs to stand up to real life or time. It doesn’t mean it wasn’t great while you had it, but if you’re in the market for a genuine, mutually fulfilling relationship that can go the distance, it’s time to let go of memories that really have about as much nutritional value as crumbs.

Your thoughts?

Check out my book and ebook Mr Unavailable and the Fallback Girl if you have a pattern of unhealthy relationships or feeling love with people who don’t match up, in my bookshop.

Image via Thrimp at SXC

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