When things go wrong

When it feels like love but it isnt

Feelings of lust, obsession and rebounding can also feel like love.

Lust is an intense and sudden attraction to somebody you hardly know. It can feel like love because the feelings of attraction are strong and all-consuming. The emotions stirred up by lust can feel very real but they are based on a fantasy. To love somebody you must know them well but many people fall in lust while they are still strangers.
Lust happens in the early phase of a relationship when people dont yet know each other. Lust is based on a fantasy, and fantasy and reality dont always mesh up. Although physical attraction is definitely a key ingredient in any romantic relationship, love is more than just a physical longing. If a relationship is all about physical attraction it is based on lust.

Obsession is often mistaken for love because people rationalise the crazy feelings they are having. They assume that it must be love if the other person is always on their mind. Real love is nurturing and helps people grow but obsession is debilitating.
People in an obsessed state have a one track mind where the other person is concerned and they often lose touch with who they are as an individual. This loss of individuality creates a vicious circle of behaviour where the obsessed person grows more and more dependent on the other person to bolster their sense of self.

Rebounding: A rebound is a relationship that starts up very quickly after another relationship has ended. Rebounds are rarely based on love but are really a way of alleviating the loneliness people feel when a relationship ends.
Rebounding can feel like love for the simple reason that the people involved want to be in love. They are used to the security of being in love and more than anything else they want to feel that security again. They convince themselves that they are in love when they are actually missing the safety and comfort of the relationship they left behind.

Unhealthy & abusive relationships

In an unhealthy relationship, you usually feel the exact opposite of how you feel when you're in a "healthy relationship." You and your boyfriend/girlfriend do not usually feel good about each other and yourselves. Not sure? Click to kNOw if this isn't love

Not all unhealthy relationships are abusive but sometimes they can include verbal, physical, emotional, or sexual abuse. This can involve both people being violent or abusive toward each other or can involve only one person doing this to the other. Many times, a relationship is not unhealthy in the very beginning, but becomes so over time
Here are some signs to look out for which mean you are probably in an abusive relationship. If your boyfriend/girlfriend:

  • gets angry when you talk or hang out with other friends
  • bosses you around
  • often gets in fights with other people or loses his or her temper
  • pressures you to have sex or to do something sexual that you don't want to do
  • uses drugs and alcohol, and tries to pressure you into doing the same thing
  • swears at you or uses mean language
  • blames you for his or her problems or tells you that it is your fault that he or she hurt you
  • insults or tries to embarrass you in front of other people
  • has physically hurt you
  • makes you feel scared of their reactions to things
  • always wants to know where you are going and who you are with

Could it be Sexual Exploitation?

You may not realise it but sexual exploitation can happen in a number of different ways so it can be difficult to spot. Click here to check you aren't experiencing Sexual Exploitation.

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