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One-Sided Love - When You Love Someone That Can't or Won't Love You Back

May 13, 2008
Over and over again stories pour into advice columns from brokenhearted people madly in love with partners that refuse to love them back. Why are some people afraid to let go and fall in love?


Some of the reasons people have given for succumbing to fear of love are:

o I've had a bad marriage and a crazy divorce, and don't ever want to be hurt again.

o I've had so many bad relationships and been rejected so many times in the past that I don't want to take that chance again!

o Why bother? It won't last anyway! Fifty percent of all marriages end in divorce. I've never even seen a good marriage, so forget it.

o Sooner or later THEY always dog you out and cheat on you...I'm not going to open myself up for that mess!

o I don't want anybody to have that kind of power over me and my happiness. I'm fine all by myself!

o Being in love makes you act like a fool, just stupid. I don't want to behave like that ever again. I was totally out of control.

o Love = marriage cooking cleaning bills and responsibility. That's just not for me!

o Being in love makes me feel too dependent and needy and joined at the hip.

o All I want is some sex! Stick and move, stick and move. So many desperate women out here... I don't need to be in love for that.

o I'd lose my sense of self and independence, and I don't want anybody telling me what to do or asking me any questions about where I'm going either!

How to Handle Those Relationship Fears

Psychologists say that we are all motivated to act or react in one of two ways: by the desire FOR something (pleasure seekers), or by the FEAR OF something (pain avoiders). For pain avoiders, the desire for the experience of a happy, caring relationship is overshadowed by the overwhelming need to avoid pain.

The ten response examples above demonstrate that a fear avoider (playing it safe to avoid the possibility of imagined pain), will guarantee him or herself a completely loveless life. Loving takes courage and a willingness to risk heartbreak and failure to achieve the glorious relationship of your dreams.

Keep in mind that many people are just as afraid of success as they are of failure. Watch out for those whose lives are ruled by fear. If your partner does not have the courage to step forward and take an emotional risk just as you are, the stage is set for an unsatisfying uphill battle.

A few of you might actually win given enough time and energy. Others will come to see that after years of trying to gain your partners trust, all you have to show for your devotion is exhaustion and bitter disappointment.

Fear is a real killer of opportunity, success and love. Fearful people play it safe and never take chances or assume risks. Your quest to convince him or her to change, to trust, and give love a chance with you may be honorable.

But until your partner rallies enough self-determination to conquer his or her fears, s/he will never advance in intimacy skills beyond their present level. Flatly, you can give and give in the hopes that love will conquer all, but it rarely does.

Though the odds are definitely not on your side, if you are willing to take that gamble, so be it. However, if you want a truly intimate relationship, why waste your time chasing someone or begging them to give you and your love a chance? Why not put your energies instead into someone who comes right out and says "yes, I've been hurt before, but I want to love again, and I'm ready."

Why not spend that energy on someone willing to open their heart, mind and spirit, and courageously take a chance at love right along with you?
About the Author
(c) 2008 Deborrah Cooper. Deborrah has authored dozens of relationship articles and advice columns on Ask HeartBeat!, which focuses on modern relationships for teens and adults. Her dating guide Sucka Free Love! provides street-smart, hilarious insight into the toughest issues facing singles today. Check out The Sucka Free Dating Radio Talk Show on Wednesday night at 8:00 pm PST.
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