Do you crave attention from the opposite sex? Do you feel uncomfortable when you are single? Do you need to be in a relationship to feel secure and good about yourself? If the answer is yes then guess what – you may be a love addict. Love addicts, like most addicts, are searching for something outside of themselves.
I used to fall in love really quickly. I would lose myself in my relationship, desperate to do anything to please the other person. I was notorious for ignoring all of the red flags and warning signs that the man I was falling for was no good for me. Love addicts tend to feel overwhelmed with loneliness whether they’re in a relationship or not.
I have dated many fellow love addicts, and my desire to be connected was strong, I often stayed with people because I didn't know how to say no. Like any junkie, I would return to the relationship for my next fix, and out of guilt and fear of being alone we would get back together.
Love addiction is a cold, dark place, because no matter what the other person does or says, you always end up feeling alone.
It wasn't until my last serious relationship that I realized I might have a problem. I was obsessed with romance and the idea of love, but I wasn’t truly "in love" with the person I was with.
In recognizing this pattern I realized all of my relationships were similar. I had developed a high tolerance for suffering in each relationship. I would allow loneliness, dishonesty, neglect and insecurities to coexist within the partnerships.
After 15 years of this dating cycle, it was time to change. In order to have real, big, honest love in my life, I needed to be honest with myself. Through conquering love addiction and advising others I came up with these methods for overcoming it. It was through following these steps that I was able to come into a place of expressive, free-flowing, healthy love.
Love addicts tend to create a fantasy of the person they are with rather than accept them as a real person. They say, "I love you" very early and often obsess over their partner. They will idealize their partner and act out in anger and frustration when they feel abandoned. If you are obsessing the first step is to recognize this pattern. And rather than focusing on what the person is or isn't doing, ask yourself: "How do I really feel about them?" Seeing the relationship for what it is and not what it "could be" or “may be” is one way to lessen the drama in your relationships.
Look at Your Fear
A love addict’s greatest fear is abandonment and, more surprisingly, intimacy. Many love addicts pick strong individuals so they can feel safe and protected. Note: These strong types are often closed off or unavailable emotionally, which adds fuel to the fire. Some love addicts often keep themselves at a distance; the core of who they are is sealed off from the relationship in fear of being rejected or hurt. If you relate, practice being vulnerable in a safe environment. This is one step to letting real honest love into your life.
Get Cozy With You
Being alone isn’t the end of the world. Although it may feel like it, look at your fear and recognize that being alone does not equal death. Take yourself out on mini dates, alone, and practice being with just you. Learn to love yourself for who you are and cultivate an amazing relationship with that amazing person.