Lust vs Love: How to Tell the Difference
Everyone strives for a bright, emotionally deep feeling that people call love. We have a stable belief love can last forever and can only transform over time, acquiring new positive qualities. However, a feeling that we usually take for love may turn out to be not so deep and even quite ephemeral. Sometimes it is only lust, which has a property of disappearing like an arrow from a bow.
So, what lies in this constant lust vs love confrontation?
Despite the fact that both these phenomena could be manifested identically and are usually associated with warm emotions, tenderness, and passion, over time, the difference between love and lust becomes noticeable. Lust is faddish whereas love can last forever. Unlike lust, love can withstand many challenges and life storms.
Love goes through many stages: it transforms and grows into a very stable and strong feeling. We can consider lust to be the first stage of love. But no one can guarantee that the first stage will not actually become the last one.
But what is lust and why is it treated as a short-term frivolous emotion? In a nutshell, it can be described as follows: when you feel lust, you focus mainly on your feelings, comfort, and happiness. And love assumes that you care about your soulmate first and pay attention to their needs and desires.
Lust is a sort of selfishness. A person is ready to accept other people only in terms of positive emotions they can bring. Those experiencing love accept people in any mood and state.
But how to be 100% sure of what you or your partner currently feel? Read the main symptoms of lust and love to find out.
Symptoms of Lust
Idealization of a partner
You always expect your soulmate to be in a good mood, ready to communicate when you want it, and eager to put you on a pedestal of their priorities. The main danger of idealization is that a person seized with passion is not ready to adequately perceive the states and feelings of a partner, and very often tends to ignore the lack of reciprocity or treat it as a personal insult.
Desire for complete possession
A person blinded by passion can unwittingly strive to obtain total control over the partner. You may prefer not to share your soulmate with anyone, neglecting their personal boundaries and communication needs.
Vivid emotions and passion bring some sort of freshness to life, cause a rush of inspiration, and desire to take on the world and change a normal lifestyle. When feeling lust, a person can be in some kind of chemical illusion and euphoria caused by raging hormones. Over time, illusions begin to gradually dispel, and a person is at risk to be confronted with the harsh reality.
Real love symptoms
Complete acceptance of a partner
People who have experience of the long-lasting relationship know pretty well the positive traits and flaws of each other. However, they hardly believe that these flaws can become a serious obstacle to real love.
When being in love, partners are happy for each other's achievements. They are ready to support their loved ones in all their endeavors. Long-term relations are based on friendship, understanding, respect. Love is not a competition implying a desire to prove who wears the pants.
Desire for giving and sharing
A loving person is ready to sacrifice a lot of time and personal resources to a partner without asking anything in return. When both partners are focused on creating a comfortable life for each other, their relationship develops more harmoniously.
Love as a feeling
Many psychologists believe that love is a feeling, which is long and evolving. Lust is an emotion – bright, shallow, explosive, but fading over time.
Consequences for not knowing the difference between love and lust
Remedy for loneliness
Sometimes people keep telling themselves that they have romantic feelings towards someone only in order to avoid loneliness. Romantic thoughts help to fill the inner emptiness, get rid of the sense of uselessness. In such a situation, a person may become addicted, which does not allow them to exist normally without a partner.
There are cases when a romantic story can become tragic. In this case, the feeling of emptiness and lack of self-sufficiency will only increase.
Heat up the eccentricity
It may happen that during the courting period, people with an increased emotionality sometimes do “crazy”, unexpected things. Cinematography and literature gladly promote the myth that unusual and quixotic behavior is a sign of love. Girls expect some extravagant actions from their boyfriends, and if the latter do nothing, ladies start questioning the authenticity of their feelings. The style of behavior during courtship depends on the personality of your partner, but not on the genuineness of feelings.
On the verge of hate
In some cases, the gap between love and hate is ridiculously small. However, such a roller coaster is typical for lust. A person focuses on ideas about how everything should be. If the partner does not behave as expected, conflict is inevitable.
While you are in a relationship, it is very important to objectively accept both yourself and your partner, as well as periodically analyze the interaction between you. If you find destructive tendencies in your own behavior or in the behavior of your soulmate, you will be able to prevent many problems.
As it has already been mentioned, real love requires a serious, daily, painstaking work of both partners. But some people are simply not ready to invest their time and effort in building a serious relationship. It is easier for them to always seek new objects to channel their passion to.
New people and emotions give a powerful energy rise, but without regular nourishment of relations, it is difficult to keep your emotional level high. One of the partners can eventually go in search of new emotions. Usually, the main explanation in such cases is the inability of the other half to understand the fickle person. Such a relationship has all chances to come to an unpleasant separation.
Lust vs love confrontation is always a matter for modern research. Thus, a famous New York scholar Helen Fisher states that when people feel lust, the activity of certain receptors in their brain, including dopamine and norepinephrine, increases. This increase causes splashes of joy and happiness and may result in anxiety and loss of appetite. Long-term love is characterized by feelings of security, well-being, and contentment that are associated mainly with the work of serotonin and oxytocin in the brain.
However, despite all the scientific clarifications and statements, it is you who should carefully analyze your feelings in order to make your lust grow into real love.