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#341368 - 12/08/08 01:18 AM What is love?
mma7402 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/08/08
Posts: 34
Loc: Chicago
I have been trying to solve this problem lately and I came across this site section and maybe I'll get some help without anyone knowing who I am and looking at me differently.

I am a 23 year old male and I have had a tough life growing up. I won't go into detail cause it's hard to talk about but I never really knew love from anyone.

Now I have been seeing this girl for about 2 years and she's told me she loved me and that's the first time I can remember someone telling me that, but the problem was that I couldn't say it back. She understands and doesn't show she's upset when I can't say it back, but I can see the sadness in her face and eyes when I don't say it.

The truth is that besides not knowing what love is, I'm scared. I'm scared that I'll screw up and hurt her, I'm scared that if I love her we'll get married and have kids and that I will [censored] up raising the kids. But most of all I'm just scared that I won't know how to love her. So I'm sorry someone out there will read this about a xxxxxx up kid who can't solve his problems, but I'm hoping someone here can help.


Edited by PDM (12/08/08 07:48 AM)

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#341377 - 12/08/08 08:07 AM Re: What is love? [Re: mma7402]
PDM Offline

True Blue Soulmate

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 22697
Loc: UK
Hello & welcome mma7402 smile

First, may I please ask you to refrain from using bad language. It is not allowed on this forum. Thank you.


As for what love is, that's a very complicated one.

With regard to your own problem, I can understand that.
I know someone who, because of her childhood, found it very hard to show affection to anyone over about the age of five. I think that it was because this was the age when she was separated from her mother. She hadn't been treated cruelly, she had just had a hard life. She loved, but she found it very hard to show that she loved. Some people thought that she must be a bit cold, but inside, she wanted to show that love. And eventually she did ~ but she was in her nineties before she forced herself to tell people how much they meant to her ~ before it was too late.

Think about it.
Do you want to wait that long?
She forced herself to tell people that she cared, after so many years of holding back.
You can do it too.
If you can speak, you can say the words.
The question is, do you love her?
I'm guessing that this is why you ask what love is.

Do you enjoy her company, more than that of anyone else?
Do you care about her, more than about anyone else?
How would you feel if you had to be separated from her for any length of time?
How important is she to your happiness and well-being?
Can you imagine caring for someone else, as much as you do for her?
Ask yourself questions like these.

And everyone is a bit scared that they will do the wrong thing and mess things up.
No-one is perfect, it's just that for most people, ignorance is bliss.
They simply don't know how badly things can go wrong.
But remember, just because things can go wrong, doesn't mean that they will go wrong.

If your relationship with this girl is a good one, based on trust, care, friendship, affection & other positive emotions, then you'll probably be fine. You already know what can go wrong, and you already know how to keep things going on the good side. Try to think of this as a positive thing ~ a learning experience ~ in spite of the negative experiences that it is based upon.

Remember, too, worrying doesn't help.
Worrying just makes you feel tense.
Then you will find yourself in a vicious circle.
Try to break it.

Have you tried relaxation & breathing exercises?
They might help.

Have you tried counselling?
Good counselling can be very helpful.

Good luck smile


Edited by PDM (12/08/08 08:39 AM)
_________________________
"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.

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#341390 - 12/08/08 11:11 AM Re: What is love? [Re: PDM]
Carl Offline
Silver Star Soulmate

Registered: 05/27/06
Posts: 5173
Loc: Gator Country, Florida - USA
mma7402, I welcomed you on the thread where you posted about the head of a shy person. I was impressed with your insight.

First, I have a lifetime of dealing with what you describe. From being abused as a child, I've experienced many things which caused me to question whether I really knew what love was.

My wife and I were up late last night, and I've been fighting a chest cold (I have COPD and at this time of year, it's rough), so I'm having my first cup of coffee and waking up.

So I doubt if I'm going to make a lot of sense.

But I sense an affinity for the way you feel, and hope we can dialogue more later.

To me, the first and foremost rule in "romance" is to tell the other person what you feel and think. Even then, different understandings of words and phrases and life situations will cause a need for conversation about what each means. But in just about every "romance" novel or story I've read, there is miscommunication from one thinking something but not telling the other, or one thinking that the other thinks something, when maybe it is not true, or not in the way that he or she sees it.

Point I'm trying to make is this: don't worry as much about the word. Tell her how she makes you feel. Hug her. Show her your heart.

Ok, I'll stop there. I know that's the hard part - right there. But you can show a little, right?

And if this is right, your heart and her heart will open up even more as time goes on.

And as you talk to her, I believe you'll see her eyes go from "sad" to "joyful."

I hope we can talk more.

_________________________
Marge is the love of my life.

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#341399 - 12/08/08 12:45 PM Re: What is love? [Re: Carl]
mma7402 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/08/08
Posts: 34
Loc: Chicago
Carl and PDM I thank you for the posts. I am sorry about the language and will refrain from using it.

To answer PDM's questions, I'd say yes to all of them about wanting to be with her and being lonely when she's away. The problem is that I have already opened up to her somewhat but she is the only one I have ever allowed to see a little of my emotion. I hear people throwing around the love word all the time to girlfriends/boyfriends or relatives and to them I think it is just a word cause they have lived with it all their life.

I try to hug her more and kiss her more often and when I do I stare into her eyes to try to convey this message. But I can't do it in public, I still have trouble even holding her hand in public and that's what worries me. I know that if I say I love her she'd be happy but I want it to be completely sincere when I say it.
_________________________
"Teneo haud fines finium"

"Veritas et Aequitas, Haud misericordia."




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#341464 - 12/08/08 08:26 PM Re: What is love? [Re: mma7402]
PDM Offline

True Blue Soulmate

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 22697
Loc: UK
I think that you are already on the right track mma7402.
You will say it one day ~ and she will know how much it means coming from you.

Have you tried alternatives, that you know you really mean?
Like: 'I think that you are wonderful', 'You make me so happy', 'it's lovely spending time with you', etc ?


Edited by PDM (12/08/08 08:28 PM)
_________________________
"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.

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#341492 - 12/08/08 09:34 PM Re: What is love? [Re: PDM]
mma7402 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/08/08
Posts: 34
Loc: Chicago
I think I am more open with her at certain times than at others. During these times that I am more open I will tell her how much she means to me and how I would still be an empty shell without her. But sometimes it feels like a dream and I'm worried I'll wake up the next day and I will be back to my old life.

I think I'm more worried about after I were to say it because I've never allowed someone to get this close before and to say admit out loud how I feel would be taking the next step and allowing her farther in. I tell myself I won't get hurt but at the same time I can't help but be afraid that I might.
_________________________
"Teneo haud fines finium"

"Veritas et Aequitas, Haud misericordia."




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#341494 - 12/08/08 09:45 PM Re: What is love? [Re: mma7402]
PDM Offline

True Blue Soulmate

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 22697
Loc: UK
You are bound to try to protect yourself from pain. It's a natural reaction to what you have been through. You are already opening up, and as you feel ever safer, things will improve, I'm sure smile


Edited by PDM (12/15/08 09:05 AM)
Edit Reason: typo
_________________________
"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.

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#342525 - 12/15/08 03:44 AM Re: What is love? [Re: PDM]
mma7402 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/08/08
Posts: 34
Loc: Chicago
Okay so I decided to update the people that have helped me out. I talked with my girlfriend about this, which was tough in itself, and we determined I need to work through my past before I can focus on my emotions and my future. The main problem is that she knows some of my past but I haven't completely opened up and told her everything that has happened to me. Once I do I think I can take another step.

So, I have scheduled to work with a therapist and I start tomorrow. I figured I should have done this awhile ago but the first part of treatment is admitting you have a problem and I never admitted it.

Again I thank you for the advice and I look forward to talking to you more throughout this site.
_________________________
"Teneo haud fines finium"

"Veritas et Aequitas, Haud misericordia."




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#342531 - 12/15/08 09:02 AM Re: What is love? [Re: mma7402]
Carl Offline
Silver Star Soulmate

Registered: 05/27/06
Posts: 5173
Loc: Gator Country, Florida - USA
Congratulations on this important decision and step! And thanks for sharing with us. May your steps be mostly forward and with the growing assurance that you are worthy of your own love.
_________________________
Marge is the love of my life.

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#342533 - 12/15/08 09:07 AM Re: What is love? [Re: Carl]
PDM Offline

True Blue Soulmate

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 22697
Loc: UK
You are doing well.

Facing your past may be scary, but once you have done it, life may become a lot easier.

Good luck with everything smile
_________________________
"The secret of success is constancy to purpose" - Benjamin Disraeli.

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