After several months of careful thought and consideration I’ve decided to reevaluate my stance on lust and love. I had described lust as just feelings and desire while love was more about the underlying friendship and deeper connection. I still hold that to be true but when I think of the one person I’ve ever loved I am not so sure how true it really was.
I fell in love once but it wasn’t really love, it was lust + in love with an idea. I dated a guy who really was not the best. He treated me like crap and talked down to me sometimes while he was a sweetheart and was utterly adorable at other times. I built up the good traits and neglected the bad. I made him out to be a figment of my imagination to the point where he was more a crush from afar than a reality, yet I regularly slept with him. But in reality, that was all it was…sex. There was no real friendship or emotionality there, or at least not on his end and can any of that stuff exist as just one sided? I convinced myself I loved him and I still believe that I did but now, dating a really great guy who treats me like gold and whom I am falling for changes my opinion about what love really is.
I think love is more about the small things. It’s not so much the extreme attraction or connection as it is the little things they do to make you happy… like going to a concert of a band they hate because you like the music or bringing you flowers “just because.” It’s a level of comfort with the person much like friendship and where you aren’t nervous to go to them about anything. Whether you are talking about your darkest days, want someone to vent to, need advice, or just want to chat they are there and you know you can rely on them. Love isn’t just about how you feel but about how you are treated and how much of your kindness and affections are reciprocated. With the guy I’m dating now I would be there for him for anything, whether it’s to bail him out of a mess at 2am or to be a listening ear to his family problems and I take comfort in knowing he will do the same. Love is about reciprocity and mutual respect and kindness. It is a bond between to people not feeling on the end of one person.
With the guy I thought I’d loved in the past, none of these things existed. There was sexual chemistry and he was a cool guy so I built up the rest to justify my sleeping with him while not getting any of the emotional connection I desired. I was wanting what I couldn’t have and what he could not give me so badly that I convinced myself I loved him. I am not refuting my love for this person because the intense feelings were real but it is the person they were for who is not real. I took a man I was with and fabricated an alternate persona and emotionality to achieve the level of intimacy I desired. I was in love with a man who didn’t exist and put those feelings out there for a guy who wasn’t worthy of them. Thankfully fate intervened and things between us ended beyond my control which was exactly what I needed to snap out of my spell and back into the real world. I changed my life, I grew tremendously, evolved as a person, and met a great guy who is worth my time, energy, and love.