I once spent my whole morning on the phone with one of my best friends, Alice. It was a very enlightening conversation for me. She had recently gotten married and I wondered how she knew this was the person she wanted to spend the rest of her life with.
Her answer was quick and cheery, “He loves me and he is also in love with me.”
This was the basis of most of our conversation. I always thought loving someone and being in love with someone were the exact same thing. I was wrong.
Did you know there is a difference between loving someone and being in love with someone?
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According to psychology, to love someone means to really care about that person, to be enamored by them, and to really want to get to know them. Love can be platonic or romantic, but it means to understand who that person is and cherish them for it.
On the other hand, being in love with someone usually means you feel an intensely strong and almost inexplicable passion and desire for him or her. Being in love means that you yearn for this person, you think about them constantly and you crave being around this person and spending time together.
At that point, I had loved before but I had not been in love. There is a difference. And when you are in love, it is easy to look back and determine whether you had loved or been in love.
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Today, I am going to share 9 telling signs that your partner not only loves you but is also in love with you.
1. They listen to you
Anytime you need to talk, your partner is there to listen. You both know you have each other’s emotional support and that your partner is not a burden for you. They seek ways to help you relieve your stress and sometimes it is going on walks together or watching a movie.
By this, I also mean they are a good sounding board even when you need to rant or vent.
Someone who is madly in love with you will be interested in spending time listening to your problems; they will not have other priorities. Those who love you want to do something if they see you are struggling.
Having someone who is a good listener is a luxury these days. Be someone’s luxury. — Reet
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2. They want to help you
When someone is in love with you, they feel the need to help you. Your personal growth and development is a win for them, too.
Someone who loves you will want to at least reduce a bit of your stress if they can. They will show their love through their actions — especially if their primary love language is “acts of service.”
For example, when Alice had to move to her new apartment before she was married to her partner, he helped her with the move. When she had to buy a new TV, he offered to accompany her to the electronics shop to choose one and then helped her organize the transportation.
Anything is possible when you have the right people there to support you. — Misty Copeland
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3. They do not leave you hanging or gaslight you
Most people I know have been through this at least once in their life. I have been a victim, too. Scratching my head, asking myself if my partner is really into me as he says or not — only to realize later on that my intuition was somehow right, he was really not that into me.
Honestly, when someone is truly in love with you, they don’t let you wonder if they do, or leave you hanging. They don’t send you mixed signals. In fact, the opposite is true. Their actions speak louder than their words, and they show their love through their actions rather than just telling you they love you.
They consistently do small things they usually wouldn’t do for other people, which, when combined, are a good indicator someone genuinely cares.
They also do not gaslight you. Ever.
Psychologists use the term “gaslighting” to refer to a specific type of manipulation where the manipulator is trying to get someone else to question their own reality, memory, or perceptions.
If you love someone, the greatest gift you can give them is your presence. — Thich Nhat Hanh
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4. They look forward to spending time with you
When someone is in love with you, they will feel the need to see you, and you will notice it.
You will not have to wait long periods before seeing them — unless you are in a long-distance relationship. In which case, when two hearts are meant for each other, no distance is too far, no time is too long, and no other love can break them apart.
Otherwise, when you have a chance to see each other, the partner who is in love with you will happily make the time. It is important to note that time apart is essential to relationship health as well. You don’t want to spend your whole time with someone, no matter how much you love each other.
Even when you are in love, you must make enough time to pursue your dreams and focus on your hobbies or career. In fact, time apart is exactly what makes you long for the other person, and makes your moments together more potent and memorable.
The time you spend apart is time that will help both of you appreciate how much you love and long for each other.
Absence sharpens love, and presence strengthens it.
— Thomas Fuller
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5. They want the relationship to work
Good relationships do not just happen. They take time, patience, and the effort of two people who really want to be together.
The truth is that the more intimately you know someone, the easier it becomes for their flaws to stand out. That is just the way life is. This is why children are abandoned, marriages fail, and friendships fall apart.
You might think you are in love with someone until you see how they act when they are caught in a snag, or out of money, or hungry, and tired.
When someone is in love with you, they are aware of your flaws but choose to be with you and highlight your strengths over your weaknesses.
Being in love with someone can be patience, pain, and sacrifice. And choosing to stay and do your best to make the relationship work. When someone is in love with you, they want you to be happy with them. Whenever you two have a disagreement, they will focus on handling the conflict and sorting things out.
Relationships are worth fighting for but you can’t be the only one fighting. — Anonymous
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6. They enjoy meeting your loved ones, and want to introduce you to theirs
When you are in love with someone, you want the world to know you two are together. In particular, you want your loved ones to know it, and you can’t wait to introduce them to your partner.
Someone who is in love with you will feel the need to introduce you to their family or best friends.
They are also curious to meet your loved ones. They want to know about the other relationships that have shaped you into the awesome person you are. And they will make an effort to get along with them.
Someone who is in love with you will not be ashamed of you.
There is only one happiness in this world, to love and be loved. — George Sand
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7. They talk about your future together (and like to acknowledge your past together)
Someone who is in love with you will enjoy talking about your past together. They will also mention the future a lot — your future together.
When they make plans, they always include you, because it feels natural to them to see you in their future. Not only that, but they also have thousands of ideas of things you can do together.
They will mention a movie they want to watch with you, a concert they want to go to with you, a country they want to visit with you, or even the house they want to live in with you.
Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards. — Søren Kierkegaard.
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8. They remember tiny details about you
Those who are in love with us tend to remember a lot of what we say and what we do.
It is nice when someone remembers small details about you. Not because you keep reminding them but because they care.
When you are in love with someone, love is in the details. Their kindness. The way their eyes light up when they see you. The furrow of their brow during concentration. The sound of their voice on the phone. Their gait as they walk. The way the rays of light bounce off their hair.
Love is in the details.
May you find inspiration in the big picture, but may you find love in the details. — Adrienne Maloof
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9. They love you
When someone loves you, you can tell by the way that they treat you.
They do not judge you by your past. They leave it in the past and are happy that they get to share a future with you.
Many scholars see love as an emotional attachment (Hazan & Shaver, 1987), and as such, they consider the quality of a relationship rather than viewing love as a “yes/no” question.
In other words, how would you characterize your relationship with this person? How secure and safe do you feel? Are you preoccupied with this person and anxiously concerned that he or she will leave you?
I think that when you truly love someone, every single day you spend with them, you fall in love even more. Every day you spend with that person is like an adventure into their soul. You discover that love is in the heart because you love them even when you do not see them.
When you love someone, showing them is better than telling them. When you stop loving someone, telling them is better than showing them. When you love someone, one of the best things you can do is let them know that you do.
Say “I love you” and mean it.
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PS: It is not cliché to say when you are in love, you will know. You really will know. Trust the process.
Wishing you loads and loads of love in your relationships.
May you find true love, and may you fall deeply in love with your partner over and over again!
This post was previously published on Hello, Love.
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