"Love" Is Warped.

Written by
Michael Wells

"Love" Is Warped.

Here's How it Got That Way

Written by
Michael Wells

"Love" Is Warped.

Here's How it Got That Way

Written by
Michael Wells
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QUESTION
"My friend who I was in love with rejected me and now I feel lonely and want some love in my life.
How do I cope with this emptiness?"

Our Idea of "Love" is Warped

When we were young kids, before about age 10, we understood Love more simply.

It was pure and uncomplicated - all about security, connection, trustworthiness, and looking after each other.

If you loved someone, it meant that you cared about their wellbeing, and that you would protect them from harm if it was within your power to.

Then Disney hacked our brains, and warped our concept of love in some fundamental ways. It added Romance, Gender-roles such as the prince, and the princess, Exclusivity, and Lifelong Commitment… “Until Death Do Us Part.”

By Age 10, "Love" began to mean something quite different to us. Now there were expectations and rules that were part of Love.

Soon after, we started hanging out with the older kids, or we clicked on a curious-looking internet ad, and boom, we discovered Sex.

Suddenly, Loving someone had an entirely new dimension… Kissing, Sex, Pleasure, Intimacy, and so much more.

Enthusiastically, we molded Sex into our definition of Love too, because hey… our pubescent bodies were pumping out intense levels of testosterone and estrogen, which left us with powerful feelings of desire.

It all seemed powerfully legit.

But here’s where things got warped.

In our enthusiasm to understand and define Love, we blindly mixed all of these different aspects together- and we lost the ability to distinguish between the many facets of love.

We lost the ability to appreciate and cultivate them individually.

  • Do you love your parents?
  • Do you love your friends?
  • Do you love your girlfriend, or boyfriend?
  • Do you love your children?
  • Do you love pizza?

Most people in these relationships wouldn’t hesitate to say “Yes, of course!” but they have a very different meaning for “love” in every one of those examples.

The English language sort of fails us that way.

In Sanskrit, there are over 200 different words for love. I bet they were less confused.

Why This Matters

Here’s why this is important for you.

You feel as though your friend has “rejected” you, but she/he didn’t do any such thing. Your friend still loves you just as much as they did yesterday- still cares about you just as much, still wants the best life for you, and deeply wants you to be happy.

They’re just not interested right now in changing that relationship to include sex.

That doesn’t make you a bad person, or unlikeable, or unwanted, or unsexy, or rejected, or anything. It just means that your friend isn't interested in physical intimacy with anyone right now, or has someone else they're sorting out their feelings about, or they are attracted to different things than you are.

Do you see anything wrong with this situation? I don't.

Did you fail in any way? Not one bit.

All that matters is that you now know that if you want physical intimacy with someone, you need to look elsewhere for that sexual relationship.

But I'm Lonely...

That loneliness you're feeling? You shouldn’t need to feel that at all.

Unless you were demanding or rude to your friend, or reacted badly to feeling "rejected," your friend probably hasn’t abandoned you. You still have exactly the same level of friendship you did yesterday, plus a little added bit of honesty.

You've honestly expressed your attraction and appreciation for your friend, and that’s awesome. Embrace that friendship fully, 100%, for what it is, and what you add to each other’s lives as friends.

Don't be disappointed that your friend isn't ready to change your friendship into something else. Maybe someday... but not today.

Appreciate that, and enjoy what you have with them.

But I'm Horny!

Yeah, I guessed as much.

Part of what you’re describing as "loneliness" is a completely different feeling- raw sexual desire. The desire for physical intimacy and sex with someone.

That’s a completely different kind of Love, and a completely different kind of Relationship… and you desire to, then you should absolutely seek out that kind of relationship too.

But understand, these two kinds of Love are very different.

They work beautifully together in a romantic relationship, but they are entirely separate things and both will continually change throughout your relationship.

So your answer is simple- if you’re feeling lonely, and horny, recognize these as two separate emotions that are trying to motivate you to develop two different kinds of relationships.

  1. Embrace that friendship, and the loneliness will disappear.
  2. Develop a great sexual connection, and the horniness will disappear.

It’s that easy. Your emotional brain is not that complicated.

Honesty, from the first "Hello."

I think it's important to clarify one more thing…

Chances are that from the beginning, part of your motivation for developing this friendship is that you hoped it would evolve into a romantic relationship.

You probably weren't intending to be devious, or to "bait-and-switch" from a friendship to a romance... but this is a very unhelpful way to approach building a romantic relationship.

If you like someone, and find them attractive, tell them that.

If you are interested in dating someone, tell them that.

If you have a friendship in which feelings of attraction have gradually surfaced, tell them the moment you're aware of those feelings.

Why?

Two big reasons...

  1. If you invest all of your time, energy and attention in a friendship with the hopes that it will turn into a romance, you're usually going to be disappointed. If you’ve entered this friendship, and invested months or years in it in the hopes that it would become romantic, you’ve approached it all wrong.
  2. When you finally express attraction to your friend, you're likely to be met with surprise, confusion, maybe even anger. People don't like to feel manipulated, or to feel expectations on them. Your friend won't like that you've hidden something from them... they may even feel lied to.

You do not need to “start with” a friendship relationship in order to develop a sexual relationship. Yes, that can happen naturally, and it’s wonderful, but they really are two different kinds of relationships - both for men, and for women.

When you appreciate a woman, it’s important to be open and up front about what you like about her.

Are you attracted to her physically? Communicate that.

Do you like her personality? Ditto.

Are you fascinated by her interests and artistic pursuits? Share those thoughts and feelings, too.

The moment you hide your true intentions in developing a relationship, you’re creating big problems. You’re creating completely unnecessary anxiety for yourself, and you’re deceiving someone in the hopes that suddenly, somehow, the relationship will change into what you always wanted it to become.

Don’t be that guy. She deserves your honesty from the first “hello.”

SERIES

This article is part of the series 

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This series is under development and further articles will be added soon.

First published on 
. Last updated on 
May 31, 2021

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