You’re Not Really In Love With Them, You’re In Love With The Idea Of Them

 Joe Gardner
Joe Gardner

Why is it that you always fall in love with the one that you can’t have or the one that got away? Why is that the more they elude you, the more you want them? They put you through pain and misery, they give you mixed signals and make you feel crazy, they confuse the hell out of you, but you still want them. In spite of being aware of how crazy this sounds, you can’t help wanting them back.

Let me save you the suspense. You will never get the one that you can’t have if you continue like this. The real reason for this, as shocking as it may sound, is because you never really loved them. You’re confusing the obsessive feeling of being consumed by someone-with love. You’re mistaking the feeling of intense longing and lust-with love. You’re mistaking the excitement of pain and drama-with love.

Take the following example. Why do women fall madly in love with ‘bad boys’? Why do men fall head over heels with the female equivalent of bad boys, manic ‘pixie’ dream girls? Opposites don’t attract, despite what popular media tells you. The manic pixie dream girl never falls for the boring, nerdy guy. The bad boy never falls for the emotional, nice girl. Bad boys are usually dominant, confident, successful, assertive and charming, qualities that biologically attract women. Pixies are usually sweet, beautiful, intelligent, unique and free-spirited, qualities that biologically attract men. They are perfect examples of dream-like images based in fantasy. They are one-dimensional archetypes that do not represent the complex personalities of human nature.

People that get obsessed in their relationships, almost relationships or friendships, don’t take the time to actually get to know the other person. By putting someone on a pedestal, you are not giving them a chance to be hundred percent authentic with you. By being obsessively attached to your idealized image of them, you are not creating space for a healthy relationship. You are looking at them through the subjective lens of their external body image, superficial personality, professional status, and financial or social status. You’re looking for what they can do for you in your idealized fantasy, rather than the reality of what you can do for each other.

Why would a person want to be with you, when they know that you would drop everything (including your sense of self-worth) to jump at the chance to be with them? Nobody is too nice without a reason, and your desperate and needy actions will make him or her question why it is really that you want them that badly. I guarantee you that they are thinking this when you chase after them, either consciously or subconsciously. The truth is that you would do anything to be with them because you have unrealistic expectations about romantic love, or you’re hoping that they can magically fill this void inside of you.

It’s because you know and believe that they can add substantial value to your life.

What about what they want? Ask yourself if you are adding value to their lives as well, or are you just being selfish in the immediate gratification of your needs and desires. It’s very tempting to get caught up in the fantasy of changing or conquering someone, because it gives you personal validation. What happens when they fall from the pedestal, and you realize that they are flawed human beings with fears, faults and imperfections? Will you begin to take them for granted or are you just addicted to the thrill of the chase?

The truth is that you’re only in love with the idea of them, and not with them.

It’s because they’re so unattainable, it makes them god-like and less human. This is not a sustainable or realistic perspective.

The person you have in your fantasy won’t magically turn into your reality. If you really want to love someone and have lasting relationships, connect with him or her on a genuine, intimate and authentic soul-to-soul level. Become comfortable and confident with your own strengths and weaknesses, so that you can relate to them on an equal level as a partner rather than an admirer. Become the person you would like to date. Don’t be blinded by superficial features and achievements. See them for who they really are; just ordinary, regular people with extraordinary potential, just like you. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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