Thought Catalog

When You Are The One Who Loves More

  • 0

I have heard, on more than one occasion, a certain piece of advice about deciding who to settle down with in life. With what I’m sure are the best intentions, various women have told me, in so many words, “If you marry someone who loves you more than you love them, you’ll always be happy.” They tell me this with a kind of sage, “it sucks but it’s true” reassurance. They know better, they seem to say, and even if my idealistic visions of what long-term commitment really means won’t accept it right now, one day I will come to understand it. I, too, will partner up with someone who needs me emotionally in a way I don’t and never will quite need them.

What makes me sad about this, though, is not so much the implication of “settling” for someone with whom you always have the upper hand in the emotional power structure, but rather a sense of empathy for what it means to be the person who is loved in return slightly (or profoundly) less. To live the constant, quiet humiliation that comes with being dependent on someone in a way that is not reciprocated erodes the self-esteem like little else can. I know this, of course, because I have been the one who loves more.

When you love more, when you can feel that your partner does not return so much of what is essential to you, you start to love yourself less. You see yourself as worthy only to the degree that this person whom you love so much has deemed you worthy, and if they are not loving you with as much passion or conviction as you love them, there must be something wrong with you. There is almost no fault in them which you are not ready to excuse, ready to brush over with the incredibly forgiving rendering of your admiration — and yet your flaws all become tangible, justifiable reasons for them not to be happy with you. In many ways, the more indifferent they become towards your overtures, the more resolved you become to convincing them otherwise.

Suddenly, approval and affection from your partner become the only kind of currency that matter to you — the only thing capable of convincing you that you are good and worth loving. Because so much of you has been invested in convincing them that you deserve them, if they don’t recognize it, it can feel that no one ever will.

When you go out together, you can feel it. There will always be limits to how beautiful or confident you can feel while in public with them because there is an inescapable overtone of being a loyal dog who doesn’t even need a leash to follow at the heel of its beloved-yet-distant master. While being with them can give you a heady rush of pride and profound gratefulness at being allowed this time together — and to bask in the glow of being their chosen one, even for a moment — it always comes with a distinct wave of shame over simply being not up to the task. Everyone that walks by is competition, and is likely so much more deserving than you in your eyes.

And the treatment that you will accept from them knows almost no boundaries. Nothing, to you, is wholly inexcusable or something you don’t in some way deserve. Even if being loved by them comes with a thousand asterisks, or is accompanied by put-downs or bouts of complete apathy, it is better than not being loved at all. Slowly you begin to adjust yourself to what you imagine they are looking for, uninterested in pleasing yourself so much as getting that residual pleasure from making them happy, if only for a minute. By the time they leave you — and they almost always will — you will look around and realize just how much of yourself you had given away. Your interests, your style, your loud laugh, your crazy friends: they were all collateral damage in the face of wanting to make them love you as you love them.

So perhaps it does make for a better marriage to be with someone who loves me more than I do them. Maybe it would make my life easier, more secure, more malleable to my whims and desires. But it would also mean that, for an entire lifetime, someone would be living out a pantomime of what they think I want them to be. I want to be just as enamored with someone as they are with me — even if we need each other for different things — because no one should ever doing another person a favor by spending their life with them. TC mark

image – A. Pagliaricci
Powered by Revcontent

📗 📘🎄 📙 📕

(📚) Hi book nerds! 🤓

“Whenever you feel hopeless, all you need to do is go outside and realize that you have been molded into human form for some reason. You are somewhere you may never be again. Your actions, no matter how inconsequential you think they may be, have been essential.” ― Brianna Wiest

“We have calcium in our bones, iron in our veins, carbon in our souls, and nitrogen in our brains. 93 percent stardust, with souls made of flames, we are all just stars that have people names.” ― Nikita Gill

Read more from these authors and use promo code “booknerd” for $2.00 off your purchase.

All books are limited edition and NOT available on Amazon. Bring something special home before they sell out. 🎁📗

Click for a unique gifts...

More From Thought Catalog

When You Are The One Who Loves More is cataloged in , , , , , , ,
  • http://www.itmakesmestronger.com/2012/12/when-you-are-the-one-who-loves-more-2/ Only L<3Ve @ ItMakesMeStronger.com

    […] Thought Catalog » Love & Sex […]

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on Pretty Head in the Clouds and commented:
    I guess the key is to balance it out. Don’t let yourself be undermined. Remind him or her if needed. If they really love you, they are willing to compromise or adjust. And remember to love yourself first and foremost.

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on Skirt.

  • http://charmanize.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/when-you-are-the-one-who-loves-more/ When You Are The One Who Loves More « Charmanize

    […] Credits: Thought Catalog […]

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on signs and commented:
    it’s a habit to browse through TC whenever im home after booking out. i quote this post for truth. the words written are the thoughts and feelings that i couldn’t translate.

    life is overwhelming.

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on My Vulnerabilities and commented:
    “When you love more, when you can feel that your partner does not return so much of what is essential to you, you start to love yourself less.”

  • http://nataliajayne.wordpress.com/2012/12/08/comforting-relevant-funny-finds/ Comforting, relevant & funny finds « It's me, Natalie

    […] on being the one who loves more. (Thought […]

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on new york, new york and commented:
    so.

  • http://itsyowyow.com/2012/12/09/thought-catalog-roundup-28/ Thought Catalog Roundup « Yow Yow!

    […] When You Are The One Who Loves More […]

  • http://sickocean.wordpress.com/2012/12/10/pathless-hearts/ pathless hearts. « Sick with Poetry.

    […] When You Are The One Who Loves More (thoughtcatalog.com) […]

  • http://kristinamirasol.net/2013/02/13/when-youre-the-one-who-loves-less/ When You’re The One Who Loves Less | kristina mirasol

    […] who loves equally. Until one night, as if reading your mind, they tell you what it’s like to be the one who has always loved more. How they were left feeling insufficient, abandoned, and so easily […]

  • http://drunkchinesewives.wordpress.com/2013/02/27/658/ Okay Cool

    […] stuff and seems content to wallow in its own trough and feel sorry for its collective self, but this is pretty true. Not just about love, but in any kind of relationship. Life’s ironic and […]

  • Thought Catalog

    Reblogged this on The Inner bottle.

  • http://dagdromend.wordpress.com/2013/04/17/mooiste-van-thought-catalog/ Mooiste van Thought Catalog | Dagdromend

    […] ongelooflijk puur en mooi. Ze heeft een stuk voor elk moment in je leven. Voor mij is het nu ‘When you are the one that loves more‘  Goed dit stuk gaat over hoe mensen doen alsof iets niet meer bestaat als het voorbij is. […]

  • http://onelittletrigirl.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/30-days-of-truth-day-10/ 30 Days Of Truth- Day 10 | Finishing is Winning

    […] will fight to the ends of the earth just for some justification that your efforts were worth it.  This piece from Thought Catalog sums up what I am trying to say better than I ever […]

  • http://limsushi.wordpress.com/2013/05/11/tc-always-puts-the-most-indescribable-things-to-words-perfectly/ TC always puts the most indescribable things to words perfectly. | chuinn's adventure-

    […] When You Are The One Who Loves More […]

  • http://mealow.wordpress.com/2013/05/26/26-may-2013/ 26 May 2013 | mealow
  • http://agypsiblog.com/2013/02/03/brain-clutter/ Brain Clutter | GYPSI

    […] piece on being the one who loves more in a relationship definantly struck a cord. Via Thought […]

  • http://nancyphamcy.com/2015/11/13/when-you-are-the-one-who-loves-more/ When You Are The One Who Loves More | nancyphamcy

    […] Read more: When You Are The One Who Loves More […]

blog comments powered by Disqus