So what is love, really?
“Love makes the world go round,” they say. For centuries, relationships have blossomed and so has love. It can occur between two or more individuals. It bonds and connects them in a unified link of trust, intimacy and interdependence. It enhances the relationship and comforts the soul. No matter how you choose to define it or feel it, love has always ruled – in music, poetry, paintings, sculpture, entertainment and literature.
In an ancient proverb, it’s defined as “a high form of tolerance”. Psychology portrays love as a cognitive phenomenon with a social cause. It is said to have three components: intimacy, commitment and passion.
Here are the 10 commonly-accepted, different types of love. Do you know where you fit in?
The simplest of all types. There are no strings attached and no sexual intentions either. It’s pure and platonic. It’s the kind of relationship you experience with siblings, close childhood friends and even a few grown-up friends.
Ever had a crush on someone? The first crush is memorable, filled with confusing jolts in the stomach, sudden urges to throw up and a stupid sense of grinning satisfaction every time you see him or her. It can be a bit more intense, an infatuation for someone, but you wouldn’t want to spoil the happy thoughts by doing anything about it.
It’s filled with heartbreaks. It’s the dreaded one-sided affection, where you like someone and you know that person will never so much as look in your direction! They may be in a relationship, or they may just use you. This is the type of love that gives love a bad name!
Are you an obsessive lover or someone who’s addicted to his or her partner? Do you feel helpless and lonely without that special someone on your arm? Obsessive love is usually experienced by novices. Obsessive lovers are scared, insecure and obviously obsessive about their relationships. If your partner has security issues, there’s no hope for a happy ending here!
Although it takes two people to create the relationship, narcissistic love also involves two people who are in love with the one person. Your partner loves you, you love you. With narcissistic love, you don’t care about your partner’s happiness, you only care about yourself. These are selfish lovers, clever scheming foxes who only get into a relationship to see what they can get out of it.
Aww… this is so lovey-dovey. This type of love is the most spontaneous and yet the one you’ll forget the soonest.
Ever felt an intense burst of happiness when you see a friend of the same sex? You’re both straight, you don’t cuddle and grope each other, but somehow you just love this person. This type of same-sex love has got less to do with sexual attraction and more to do with respect and admiration.
Ever dated someone who got your pulse racing with just a hug? Ever had a crush on someone who makes you daydream while you’re alone in bed? Yeah, you’ve experienced desire. Lusty love!
Butterflies, bliss and romance. It’s beautiful, soppy love at its best. You feel the flutter of butterflies in your stomach, the world looks so much more beautiful and you can’t hold that smile back no matter what you do. You want to be with your sweetheart all the time. You’re happy, your lover is happy, the world is happy for you, and you are having the best time of your life!
This kind of love is unconditional. Blessed are the lovers who experience this special type of love for each other. Deep love is the stuff fairy tales and romance novels are made of. If you both care about each other and love each other selflessly, then you are in the spell of a special type of love that few ever experience, but spend all their lives looking for. If you want to ensure that you experience this type of love, take a leap of faith and truly fall back in love with someone who loves you. Soon enough, with a bit of trust, communication and hope, you may just live through this grand experience that dreams are made of.
Ali Murray is hosting another one-day workshop which will enrich your relationship. Through the sharing of real-life stories, practical skills and tools that work, the ‘Weekend Relationship Reboot’ will help you achieve a deep, rewarding relationship. The workshop takes place from 9am – 5pm on the 30th April in Parkmore, Sandton. The cost is R1 750pp (R1 500 for 3 + group bookings).