How do you differentiate between obsession and true love?

In one of my past articles we ready discussed about the difference between true love and lust. But If you have ever been in love so passionately, to go over your partners place to check on them, logged in their personal accounts to check any messages from the opposite gender, checked in their cell phones while they weren’t looking or worst yet constantly hover around them, it is possible that you have been in an obsessive infatuation with them.

Friendship marks a life even more deeply than love. Love risks degenerating into obsession, friendship is never anything but sharing.
―Elie Wiesel

Are you an obsessive lover?

Now my condition’s kind of scary, I need you now. Not love but I need something else. So here’s my confession. This time, this time; don’t just want you to love me. I want to be your obsession.
–Sky Ferreire

If you have listened to this catchy song, and understood the lyric, you have a fairly good idea of what obsession is. Now many of us may confuse obsession with clinginess but there is actually vast difference between the two. While clinginess is calling your partner and asking them every five minute what are they doing, obsession is straight up stalk you and look at you as you as you sleep crazy. Many of are appalled when they see someone confess to stalking people on face book and other social networking sites. But in reality, all of are to some degree face book stalkers anyway. Not to the extent of hacking someone’s account, but just enough to satisfy the human nature of curiosity and toe the line between normal and crazy.
Most likely in the case of ex-boyfriends and girlfriends, there is a curiosity to know what they are up to which adds up to the question which all of us want to know is their life better than ours.  Human beings are naturally envious of things we don’t have. Even if our life is overall better than someone else’s, there is always one particular thing of them we wish we had. This envy and curiosity is what makes people search about celebrities on gossip sites and other similar websites.  But first and foremost Obsessive type of love is particularly felt when its first love. When you first fall in love, there is always a happy sensation of feeling that you wish would last forever. So, some type of behavior that would considered as obsession is in all of us.
How do you differentiate between obsession and true love?

The Science of obsessive love

Now, obsessive love might be pleasant at first, just as jealous is thrilling initially, but when the obsessive love crosses the weird line it just might get you arrested.
For most, infatuation is a thing that has already been experienced at some point of their lives. What makes it scary though is that it quite easy to confuse it with love. When we see someone new, and feel ‘butterflies’ in stomach and get shy around someone, it may feel like its first sight love which so many of dramas and novels try to prove is a legit thing. The first sight love, is however very unlikely to be real. You can’t just fall in love with a person without knowing what they are personally like. You may have spotted them here and there and talked to them a few times, the most likely thing was that you were seeing the person through rose tinted glasses, in which their every annoying habit seemed normal to you. This is a time which can also be clinically explained by science. The feelings of euphoria that you get while the relationship is new, is the dopamine produced by the brain which creates cravings also creates feelings of addiction as well. A study conducted at the University of Washington at Seattle, proved the scary truth of being lovesick, in this experiment infatuated people were shown the photos of their beloved and noted a spark of activities in the tiny area known as the mid brain which releases drug like waves of dopamine which is the same reaction that is triggered when a drugs are involved. It’s the brain’s way of a reward system that created happy and more focused energy.
Therefore much like drug addict, it is harder to get over someone if they are truly infatuated or even in love with someone.

I must get my soul back from you; I am killing my flesh without it.
―Sylvia Plath

Are you an obsessive lover?

What drives a person to stalk a person for weeks or set up “accidental” meetings and hack up another’s personal accounts? Well, all of things make a good drama, in real life, not so much.  It is the truth, that what we see in most of the dramas is not real love but only infatuation. Obviously, stalking someone is not funny nor is it romantic as some movies might lead you to believe.
Relationship experts all over the world may agree that relationships that especially start from such beginnings are doomed to fail. Therefore, expecting a drama like love is itself a foolish thing to desire. On the other many psychologists claim that, although anyone of us might be involved or even be the “obsessive” type for someone, there are certain personality types that are more prone to be obsessive lovers. For example, people who had alcoholic parents and suffered due to lack of concern shown for them during childhood, are more like to be anxious about their partner’s love. No matter who is at fault, such person used to thinking that they are the ones to blame. Such people are more likely to stay in an abusive relationship that any other personality type.

Are you in an obsessive relationship?

Obsessive relationships can be stressful for the partner just as it is difficult as it is for the ones who obsess. Many of them don’t start out to be unhealthy relationship but end up being one. If you feel stressed about your relationship, it may be a pointer that it is unhealthy.

  • Smothering relationship
  • Many of us have at least seen when someone gets too much attached and dependent on the partner. Frequent checkups, hacking Facebook accounts, Whatsapp stalking, leaving constant messages and constantly wondering where their partner at several intervals of time is etc. make a person more suffocated rather than happy.

  • Anxious about not offending
  • You are constantly walking around eggshells to take care that your words do not offend your partner. You know that they have an ability of overstressing to figure out the meaning of your off hand remarks, and are extra careful because of this very reason. You love them and hence do not want to hurt them.

  • Instead of finding happiness in company, you feel isolated
  • Always being away from friends and family is taking a toll on your life. Being with the person you like was pleasant at a time, but with the partner demanding more of time, you feel isolated. You no longer feel good in that someone’s company as they constantly want to be your center of your attention. This is a major flag that you are in an obsessive relationship.

  • No “me” time
  • For some, it is fundamental for their mental wellbeing to want and need some time alone with themselves. This is time they need to concentrates on their hobbies and interests. Healthy relationships inspire you to explore your creativity than damaging it.

  • Fights over social interactions
  • These can turn violent in many cases. Fight about a partner being “too attached” to someone else than their partner. Anger over spending time with friends, behavior and also repeated apologies of better behavior are signs of being in an obsessive relationship.

How do you differentiate between obsession and true love?

Obsessive love or True love

Love is supposed to be natural. It is supposed to be freeing rather than capturing. It is not about wanting to have a person, but about wanting a person to be happy no matter what. The most pure form of love stems from utmost selflessness and wanting to possess another human being is in itself an act of selfishness.
Such relationships usually do not work out. Society often put labels on such things, and many people pursue it, but unfortunately only few can actually achieve it. Love can be the easiest of things and relationships can be liberating when both the parties involved are truly ‘experiencing’ their relationship rather than just for the sake of labels.

I love you so much that nothing can matter to me – not even you…Only my love- not your answer. Not even your indifference.
―Ayn Rand


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