Do you know all you need to about love? This print says ““Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.” from 1 John 4:7. I just love the poetry in that verse, don’t you?
Love is an endlessly interesting and complicated subject. I’ve written about it a lot! And I think it is something that we’re always questioning and wanting to understand more about. Here are ten things you should know about love, and all that goes with it.
10 Things to Know About Love
1) You Can Feel Love Without Attraction
There are different kinds of love, of course, which means that you can love someone with all your heart and soul without attraction. This question is often asked of men and women who have been friends a long time and love each other, and yet, aren’t together as a couple.
2) Love Can Change
The fact that love is fluid and ever-changing is usually a good thing, because it means that love can transform from just physical attraction to something much more meaningful. On the flip side, it also means you can fall out of love with someone, too.
3) Love Is Physical and Emotional
Is love something that happens in your heart? Or your head? Turns out, it’s a little of both. One study found that “Some symptoms we sometimes feel as a manifestation of the heart may sometimes be coming from the brain.” In other words, love makes an impact on your physical and emotional well being.
4) How Do You Know He or She Is the One?
Years ago I asked my grandmother when I would know I had met “the one.” She said, “You’ll just know.” That used to frustrate me, but when I started dating my husband I did know. Something was just very different and comfortable about our relationship that was different than other people I had dated. That isn’t to say you can’t feel love for people you date, in fact, some scientists believe you fall in love about seven times before you get married. But once you’ve met the one, you see the difference in the love you felt for other people from the kind you feel for your spouse.
5) Is Love at First Sight Real?
Yes and no. Studies have shown that nerve growth factor (NGF) increased in those who had recently fallen in love, which some claim confirms the existence of love at first sight. However, true love, the kind that actually means something, takes time to develop. The increased NGF does mean that something physical happens to you when you fall in love, even if it is superficial or for a short time. Couples that claim love at first sight experience intense physical attraction that continually grows into meaningful love.
6) Love Doesn’t Mean Compatibility
Sometimes people can genuinely love each other, and yet, they argue and have a hard time living under the same roof. That’s because love doesn’t mean you’re necessarily compatible. However, if you do really love someone, you will be more willing to adapt and come to a happy medium so you can live together.
7) Love Doesn’t Mean Commitment
Unfortunately, you can love someone and still cheat on them. Those that have been cheated on typically ask their partner, “Don’t you love me?” but what they should ask is “Don’t you respect me?” Cheating involves complete disregard for the relationship, but it doesn’t mean that the person doesn’t love the one their unfaithful to. Many things go into cheating, and none of them have to do with love.
8) You Can Grow to Love Someone
You can develop feelings of love for someone over time. This is why arranged marriages work out sometimes and also why long-term friends suddenly fall for each other. Love can grow the more you spend time with someone and get to know their heart and mind.
9) You’re Designed to Feel Love When You Have Sex
If you think you can have sex with someone and not experience feelings of love to some degree, think again. When you sleep with someone, your body releases endorphins and oxytocin, which help you feel a closeness you wouldn’t normally have felt. This can lure you into thinking you’re in love, when really you’re not. (It also explains why you look back over your past relationships and wonder what you were thinking.)
10) Your Idea of Love Can Change
The good news is that when you get to midlife, your idea of love is probably different than it was when you were younger, and that is a positive thing. Mature love, the kind that can only come with years of experience and the intelligence that goes along with it, is much more satisfying to your heart, mind and soul.