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How I Found The Definition Of True Love

“What about love?”
“Overrated. Biochemically no different than eating large quantities of chocolate.”
—Al Pacino (The Devil’s Advocate)

Have you ever dreamed of the perfect partner, the ultimate romantic love in the perfect relationship? A partner who is your missing part, the one that fulfills you and makes you complete? Who’s been waiting their whole life just to meet you, and by your bond, a door in heaven opens for you?

Welcome to the club. You are not alone.

Please read the following email from a dear reader:

Throughout my break-up there’s a concept that’s really been holding me back, “the one”. I’ve always believed it but after this break-up I’ve come to question it. I was so sure my ex was the one, and I was so sure he would never hurt me like this.

If I ever find love again, how will I know if that person really is the one? I had no doubt in my mind that he was the one, in fact part of me still believes it, but how can I ever be sure of anything in a relationship if I was so certain last time and so wrong?

I too suffered from the same disease: believing in an unrealistic picture of “Love”.

The Concept Of “The One”

Since I was little, I believed in the concept of finding “the one”.

I knew exactly how this whole thing was going to play out: I would accidentally run into a beautiful and charming girl one fine day, (or maybe she would knock at my front door), look into her face and realize immediately that we were meant for each other. She would be “the one”. The following life together would be one of fulfillment and eternal love.

Heaven on earth in the arms of a woman.

Please take a look at the following little story from the ancient Greek about the origins of true love which I read long time ago:

The Origin of Love

There was Aristophanes’ Androgyny, Plato’s anecdote on the origins of love and mankind. The story recounts the primordial androgyny, mythical creatures with four arms, four legs and two heads. They epitomized completeness and were able to do almost anything. However, their pride in their abilities angered the gods and caused Zeus to cut them. Separated in two, they were destined to drift alone, empty and incomplete, longing for their former halves. For Plato, the androgyny is the symbol of wholeness, and the pursuit of it, is what love is.

Isn’t this beautiful? This story always fascinated me.

The problem here was that I took the whole thing too much to heart. I was looking for my missing half.

Did it worked out that way for me? Do I still believe in it, and does it have to be a bad thing doing so?

I will tell you in a minute.

First, I have a question for you: what do YOU think is the definition of true love, and is there such thing as “the one”?

Not so easy to answer, is it?

There is a scientific categorization from a renowned sociologist about the six types of love.

According to John Lee, there are six different types we can distinguish.

Six Types Of Love

1. The sexual love called “Eros”

The focus here is a sexual one where looks are more important than anything else. It is based on aesthetic enjoyment.
2. The love of the players called “Ludis”

These people tend to change partners frequently and are never attached to anyone. They like the game and the conquest.
3. The companionate love, the “Storge”

The warm and affectionate love you feel for a sibling or a best friend.
4. The obsessive love, the “Mania”

It’s an extreme form of love where the lover possesses the other completely and wants their partner’s attention constantly. This is usually driven by low self-esteem.
5. The love called “Pragma”

This type of love is realistic, the lovers are looking for a match referring to personality and values.
6. The altruistic love, the “Agape”

Unselfish as it is, it accepts people as who they are and does not try to change them without asking anything in return.

By looking at the list, you can easily assign what types of love you have felt in the past. Let me take a wild guess: Was it one of the first four?

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57 Responses to How I Found The Definition Of True Love

  1. Stephanie January 18, 2010 at 10:24 pm #

    That’s a BIG question…I think LOVE is when you love yourself enough to know when someone is reciprocating the same feeling that you feel about yourself!

    Or, when you take all the information that you have been given and all the opinions that you may have formed about a person (good and bad) and its OK…and you’re still willing to put your heart and energy on the line for them.

    Or, when someone elses interest and well being are just as important as your own.

  2. dawn January 18, 2010 at 10:40 pm #

    Dear Eddie,
    I understand about the Agape love, however it leaves me confused. I had to stop sleeping with my lover because I was in love with him and he said he was not in love with me and only felt friendship. It nearly killed me to stop seeing him, but i found that staying with him was destroying my self esteem because it hurt me so much to be treated like a buddy instead of a lady. You know, no loving carresses, no I love you and miss you and such. It was odd and left me with a bad feeling in my stomach. He wanted it to continue because he does care about me, but i just couldn’t. But i really feel like i love him. Are you saying that I don’t love him just because I could not fulfill my own needs? Should I have stayed with him and just worked on myself?

    • Lisa July 16, 2010 at 5:57 pm #

      OH this is exactly what I am going through! It really sucks to love someone and accept them as they are and yet they don't reciprocate! We had the most wonderful friendship but I had to give that up because my heart broke looking at him and knowing he did not want more. Hindsight he is immature and emotionally unavailable and I knoew that but I was not smart and threw caution to the wind and allowed myself to love him anyway. I will be smarter the next time.

  3. Determined January 18, 2010 at 10:57 pm #

    Around 9 months I ago, I stumbled upon this website. After spending some time reading the posts and articles, I felt something gaining momentum inside me. It wasnt the anger that caused this feeling, it was the feeling of insight, the feeling that I wasnt alone, the feeling of a new life, a new ME.!

    The journey so far has seen plateaus and valleys and steep climbs but the scenery has been breathtaking, if not humbling and inspiring. There were days when, out of the blue, a clear day changed into a storm by some small, insignificant memory. I welcomed the storm, it allowed me to appreciate the better days I knew was ahead. By the way, when someone says “Time Heals All Wounds”, it does.! Just be patient.

    I have grown stronger and gained insight about “ME” and through my journey I kept on coming back to the question “What is Love”, did she deserve the “Love” I gave to her.?

    Thanks for this article Eddie, this knowledge will surely be usefull during my journey to find Love.!

    My Biggest advice to ppl on this site, feel every emotion during your trials and as much as its a cliche, it does get better and with time, you heal.!

    :)

    I love this site..!

  4. Sachao January 18, 2010 at 11:08 pm #

    I really love this story and topic. One thing Eddie describes, is something I really learned from my break-up experience. Life is about loving yourself. Independence: You have to be able to get it together yourself!!! You should not wait until ‘the one’ (although I agree with Eddie and also do not think the one exists…it’s about meeting the right people at a certain timing in your life. I believe that different people/relationships belong to different parts of your life). Don’t wait for that person…that person will come by, sooner or later. And until that time, live your life to the full. You are responsible for your own happiness, no one else is. That’s the main thing that I’ve learned. Life is what you make of it!

  5. canali January 18, 2010 at 11:20 pm #

    ‘forever’ ‘happily ever after’ and ‘the one’ are romantic myths that do us more harm than good….life is full of change…what we have today we don’t necessarily have tomorrow (and that’s not always a bad thing)…lovers come and go, and the thing i’ve realized most important is that the most important relationship one will ever have has to be with oneself because you’re with yourself 24×7…it really is ’til death due us part’…so take better care of yourself, everyone.

  6. Ryan January 19, 2010 at 3:18 am #

    Being a male reader of your email newsletter and articles only since this past November (Yep. Surprise. That’s when my girlfriend broke up with me), I would like to take this time to commend you for all of your efforts constructing this online community for all of us (including us men) who are going through the experience of heartbreak. Thank you for that.

    The way I see it, when we were born and were brought into this world which we now call life, we consisted of what I like to think of as pure love. Unfortunately, we were all born into a world that suppresses love. So, in the process of growing up, we’ve gotten hurt. We’ve experienced very painful losses of love. But the question remains: What is love? What is the definition of true love?

    I’m not so sure one single definition will suffice as an adequate answer to this question. Each and every person has different ways of expressing love, of expressing true love (hence the six love styles — And by the way, none of these Lee’s Love Styles are meant to be the “correct” way of loving. Agape is not necessarily better than Mania). After taking Lee’s Love Styles survey myself, I found that out of the six dimensions (Eros, Mania, Ludus, Storge, Agape, and Pragma) of love styles I ended up being a combination of two: Eros and Pragma. For me, love requires an initial spark at the beginning, and unexplainable attraction. At the same time, I’m realistic with love – in the sense that there are also factors other than the initial spark of attraction which must be met too (there’s Pragma’s shopping list quality :D). Therefore, I do believe in love at first sight and don’t view it as being an unrealistic view of love. I felt it once, and if it was possible once, I have faith I’ll find/have it again someday.

    That being said, the question remains: is there “the one”?

    Personally, I’d still like to think that there is “the one” out there. If things with my ex never turn around, than she wasn’t “the one”. It’s like Michael Bublé sings, “I just haven’t met you yet”.

  7. rachel January 19, 2010 at 11:08 am #

    Thanks for this article! its a great point that we have to be realistic and look past a lot of society’s views of love. In reference to Ryan’s comment, I’d have to ask though; wouldn’t agape make more sense than mania as being a ”correct” view of love? Mania is generally obsessive and based on low self esteem, and I have experienced a relationship including this type of love – it wasn’t a positive point for me.. We can make a relationship work with many different types of people, and have a measure of happiness at that. Whether its the best relationship for us is a different matter! So no, I personally don’t believe there is ”the one” out there. But I do aspire to being in the healthiest and most satisfying relationship I can be in.and this site has helped me on the journey… :)

  8. mariam January 19, 2010 at 12:12 pm #

    first, I don’t know how to really classify feelings like love as they are so complex and affected by many variables of your past, your experiences, your culture, and your innate personality. Nevertheless, I think that love is basically the comfort and happiness we feel towards the presence of the loved one in our lives, and the well to sacrifice to keep him or her in our lives.

    However, is it alone, enough to build a lifelong fulfilling, healthy relationship? In my opinion it is not. You need both the acceptance of mind, along with agreement of heart to start a healthy relationship with high chances of survival, and even then you need the wisdom, knowledge, patience, and effort to sustain it in the face of other life happenings like children, relatives, crashing interests and habits, and unexpected misfortune. So I think that when we intend to start a relationship with the other, we have to ask our selves, do we love this person? does he or she has the qualities that I can’t live without. on the other side, what are his faults. Does he or she has faults that I can’t live with? and the last questions are relative ones whose answer maybe different from one individual to another, and what satisfies a humanbenig may not satisfy another.

    a last thought is that we do tend to idealize love and romantic relationships. There are many kinds of love we need to search and practice, love of god, love of family, love of nation, and so many other kinds of love. There are so many things to do and more to life itself than being married or in a relationship.

  9. bella January 19, 2010 at 1:18 pm #

    A few months ago my boyfriend broke up with me. It left me falling through an abyss of darkness.
    I guess my love would have been categorised as the “mania”type. I had an extremely low self-esteem which i have suffered from all my life. Being with my boyfriend let me taste moments of happiness and I lived for them. But most of the time it was hard work. I was scared he would leave me, scared he didn’t love me as much, scared that I wasn’t good enough… My insecurities tore him down and after a year he couldn’t do it anymore.
    I thought he was “the one”. It was so hard letting go of the idea that we fitted so perfectly together, that I would never find anyone who was like him. But slowly I came to a realisation:
    I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t happy before I met him, I wasn’t happy with him either. Not for real.
    To become happy I had to love myself. I had to stop concentrating on him and the idea óf being or not being with him, and concentrate on myself.
    Now, 4 months later, I am happier than I’ve ever been. I feel so strong, that I made it through all the darkness. I did it all by myself, with help from friends and family, and I couldn’t be more proud.
    My ex and I are giving our relationship another go. The difference now is, that I don’t stress by asking myself if he’s the one or if i’m his true love. I believe that right now we are together, and in this moment he is the one for me, but i know by experience all that can change, but that’s ok. Then I will find another “one” for me. And I will try never to lose myself again, because as long as I have this love for myself, I will always come out on the other side, I won’t stay in the darkness.
    It might be cliché but it is so for a reason:you can’t love someone without loving yourself. Or at least, you will never find true happiness until you do. The wonderful thing is that you can find that love. I did, so I know for sure anyone else can as well =)

    • joseR May 11, 2010 at 5:31 pm #

      way to go bella! congrats hahha how long did it take u to get to this point? bc i am on the same path and wow i suffered from low self esteem and really codependent on my x partner for everything i know ew! anything that u found that helped u would be great to know

  10. Bree January 19, 2010 at 5:48 pm #

    I believe in soul mates, but I don’t believe everyone is ready to meet theirs in every lifetime… I believe that every man I’ve met and been involved with has been “the one” because every relationship prepares you for the next one. He was “the one” for the moment. You can’t be with the one you’re going to end up with unless you went through the experiences of the ones from your past. That’s like going from being overweight to a body builder overnight. Therefore every relationship you have is important and necessary, whether it ends in what you consider to be favorable or not.
    I also believe that you absolutely have to love yourself before you can be in a healthy relationship. But most people never learn to completely love themselves so they’re in relationships that require dependency to some extent, and if they don’t see this, they’ll never be truly happy. But again, not everyone is ready to meet their soul mate in every lifetime…

  11. Alexandra January 19, 2010 at 9:15 pm #

    That is a good article and right in time! I completely agree with true love definition. I suspect i wasn’t quite ready for it yet. And truely i would classify mine as “mania” as well. My break up happened half a year ago. It was a complete nightmare to go through the first few months. Though right now the suffering isn’t so much and i can smile and got a new routine I still often have the thought that he was the one…i agree there are many…though it is so hard to find someone compatible. I meet the guys but they are really not my match…and everytime that happens I guess i unwillingly think why did we have to break up it was so good….i know why we had to break up though in my head and i know it was the right thing to happen but this annoying thought comes back over and over again….
    Good luck everyone fighting the illusion. what works best is to kill that thought right were it starts and tell yourself something like…come on…he’s not the only man on the planet…what makes you think he’s the only one who’d fit you….and the best thing about this thinking…it is true! The person behind is not the only option in life and if at the moment none pass by doesn’t mean there are none….
    Anyhow…thanks for the article read it right at the moment when was thinking why in the world we had to break up and it had to be over…huh…that helped quit this thinking…:)

  12. Makkie January 20, 2010 at 7:50 am #

    I have read the article and all the posts and there is something from everyones post that relates with me. I agree with Staphanie on the fact that when you know all that is to know about someone (good & bad) and you are still there, you are willing to give everything and love unconditionally. That’s apart of true love. My ex keeps telling people how much he still loves me but he chose to not be with me he chose “Good Times” and material things rather than been with me and the love we shared. The last few months of our relationship he wasn’t really there, he was just going through the motions. As Eddie says, a relationship takes daily commitment, you have to want to be there. I heard a quote from a movie where the guy tells the girl ” I WOULD RATHER FIGHT WITH YOU THAN MAKE LOVE WITH ANYONE ELSE” .
    I agree that every relationship you have prepares you, makes you wiser and makes you stronger for the next.
    I loved my Ex to the point where all that mattered was his happiness. He was my everything, my sun rose and set on him. I was willing to give up everything for him. I realise now how wrong that was. You need to be a whole person BEFORE you go into a relationship, you need to love yourself. Each day I learn to Love myself a little more, every part of me, unconditionally

    This site is amazing, it makes the heartache more bearable knowing that so many others are out there going through the same thing. And as so many bear testament, it does get better and time will heal all your wounds.

    I remember to be gratefull for all I have each day and know that each day I get stronger.

  13. Nicole January 21, 2010 at 5:52 am #

    I always believe of an unselfish love to be true love. It was even taught in the Bible, just like how Jesus let himself be crucified just because of an unselfish loves towards mankind. This kind of love is true and sincere. When we are going to relate this to relationships, does it mean that setting someone go shows how much we love them?

    Well I guess, letting go is not the bravest thing to do to show love. It’s fighting for it and then eventually giving up and accepting defeat if you see you are just causing unhappiness.

  14. Ray January 21, 2010 at 11:40 pm #

    @Ryan -I agree with much of Ryan’s comments. The question,” is there the one out there?” Yes I believe there is , but you would be very lucky to find them at the beginning of a relationship, when either partner are doing all they can to give a good impression.
    Relationships are complex, there is respect, trust, commitment, sharing, and effective communication, involved.
    I have been married for twenty years. It’s been a roller coaster of highs and a very stressful low several years ago, which almost tore us apart. We emerged closer and more caring to each other, and are living now in a happy, content relationship. So I can in all honesty say, she is the one!

  15. Cindy Burress February 1, 2010 at 1:55 am #

    I do understand where you’re coming from, and it’s very plain to see that you’ve been hurt, bad. I understand it was 1998, this is 2010 and you’re still talking about it. But it is the way you make a living. Lol I guess we never forget.. You did ask for comments, so this is how I feel….
    I do believe in true love, it is un-conditional love. One must love them selves before they are capable of this. One must also be able to give it in order to receive it. Most people are not capable of loving un-conditionally. Some love with their mind and not their heart, just as some love for purely physical reasons and not what’s inside. I don’t think one can think of love as being realistic unless you love solely with your mind. I don’t think we can choose who we fall in love not where our heart is concerned, except to monitor the kind of people we associate ourselves with.. That being said, To love or not to love is a chose we make. Some, after being hurt choose not to love again, they close themselves off and are just num inside..
    As for the “one”, after getting thru a terrible breakup with who I thought was the “one”, I certainly hope there is more than just that one. I don’t know yet, but I haven’t given up.
    I have learned a lot of what I’m telling here from the one who broke my heart. Thou it ended, we had a amazing relationship, I think he would say the same. Looking over my life, I’ve only loved a couple of times, each time was better than the one before and when it ended hurt worse than the one before. I think it is better to feel love or even pain, than nothing at all.. Finding true, un-conditional love is not easy, but when you do it takes commitment on both sides for happiness.
    So I guess a part of me is cautiously looking forward to the next and if it’s better than the last, OMG, this should be good. Maybe it will be the “one” that last a life time..

  16. Angelica February 11, 2010 at 8:09 am #

    Thanks, Eddie. This is very helpful. I’m a several days post-breakup (yes, again…. *sigh*). While this one is nowhere near as painful as the one I endured a little over a year ago, I can’t help but wonder if there’s something wrong with me. Maybe I’m not supposed to be in a relationship? Maybe I will never find true love? Maybe not everyone (including myself) has a “one”?

    • Eddie Corbano February 14, 2010 at 9:12 am #

      Hi Angelica,

      Please don’t do this! This “is-there-something-wrong-with-me”-mindset is really bad for you.

      Take this whole thing as a learning process. Each step brings you closer to the partner who’s perfect for you. Just be patient.

      You got over your Ex the first time and you will again… and this time much faster.

      Your friend,
      Eddie

  17. Jack February 14, 2010 at 10:27 am #

    I found myself to be the “Mania”.
    And what happened to me is a reminder that we should really love ourselves before we should love anyone.
    And here’s my story;

    I’ve always have low self esteem due to my awkward teenage years.
    I was pimply and constantly being mocked at for it.
    Even my mum was rather harsh with her critics(I don’t blame her).

    It was only in my late teens, that I discovered that dressing up & looking good on the outside helped to improved my self esteem a little.
    Gradually, over time, I take on a new persona & pretended to be really comfortable & confident about myself.. but deep down, I was still very much the same insecure boy that I was years ago.

    I never had a gf till I was 24yrs old.
    When she came along, it was the best thing that happened to me in my entire adult life.
    She was vivacious, gorgeous & full of life.
    We fell madly in love.
    The sex was marvellous & the passion was strong.
    However, over time, I grew increasing insecure & was afraid to lose something so wonderful..
    My insecurities got the better of me & I was increasing harsh towards her..
    Constantly being fault-finding & verbally abusive towards her, in hopes of being in control of the relationship.
    I knew that was a wrong thing to do but I just couldn’t help it due to my low self esteem.
    She eventually left me when she could no longer feel love from me.
    I was devastated and was suicidal.
    We were together for 1.5 years.

    However, 3 months later, she came back & wanted me back but I screwed up yet again. I was prideful & dumped her after being back together for 3 weeks, only to realise I still love her dearly( I’m a total mess-up).
    But this time, she left for good.
    No amount of pleading, calls or emails helped. (Just when I thought I couldn’t screw up any furrther)
    I was back to depression again.

    Shortly after that, triggered by a desperate attempt to numb my emotional pain, I jumped into a relationship with another girl that came my way.
    One that I know, right at the beginning, that I wasn’t able to give my love & attention fully.
    The relationship lasted for a year as she became increasing clingy.
    She was the one who ended the relationship hoping that I might show her some love in return.. Or that I might court her back.
    I didn’t went back to the relationship, for it was getting increasing difficult to have any proper conversation with her.
    Thinking back, I guess she belongs to the “mania” category as well, as I do see my reflection in her.

    After which, I went single for a year, decided that I should just not meddle with affairs of the heart.
    However, in between this one year period, I caught myself thinking about my 1st gf, realising that I haven’t gotten over her(even after more than 2years).
    Just when I thought I’m a better person to give love after my one year hiatus from love..
    I just wasn’t ready for it.

    Then early 2008, I met a lady on the internet, she was everything I ever wanted, matured, attractive, driven & highly successful in her career.
    We fell in love.
    I thought I have found “the one” for me.
    We shared the same hobbies, photography, travelling & a love for japanese food. We visited almost half the globe within our one year & 5 months together.
    And guess what, she left me a few weeks back.
    I screwed up. Yet. Again.
    I was insecure & felt that I didn’t deserve her, the same fault finding cycle repeat itself again.
    I literally killed her love for me, single handedly.
    And now, I’m all alone.
    Picking up my pieces..
    Punished by my own insecurity..
    Life have lost its meaning to me..

    • joseR May 10, 2010 at 8:56 pm #

      dude wow your story has touched me i am the same way bro and i killed the relationship but bro i am finally learning to love myself put myslef first i hated being so insecure and codependent on my partner i suggest you get into a support group or something or a course to love yourself and focus on yourself bc in the end its never about her but about you! so hey i dont wanna push u or anything but i want to challenge you to love yourself bro i hope you are up to the challengwe to do w.e it takes to love yourself and be “mania” again

    • berny May 11, 2010 at 9:36 am #

      @Jack and joseR..
      Guys….u have one more partner here….i was being the same,trying to jump from one relationship to other…tryign to mask the pain.But this time it was quite devastating,but however i am holding on not to jump into another relathionship and makes things worser for me.It hard to come out of it.But i am far better compared to last month except bit of haunting memory.its the time to grow up and love ourself..
      @Jack:its been 3 months since u broke up.how are u feeling now??…i hope u are fine….

    • sarah October 1, 2010 at 2:12 pm #

      i know exactly what you mean, i drove my boyfriend of over a year away from me because he was the first i'd ever made future plans with and i was just too scared of losing him

      now he wont take my calls or reply to my messages, im trying to force myself to stop acting like a crazy person and just stop contacting him

      i know, though, that it will never work between us or between me and anyone else unless i learn to love myself before trying to love anyone else. so, while he gets his space, maybe wanting me back and maybe not, im going to learn to complete myself and love myself and accept who i am the way i am and not jump into any relationship with selfish motives. its tough, but its the only way to go on, and life does go on, it is our choice to either move on too or get stuck and miss out on all the possibilities.

  18. yamuna February 18, 2010 at 4:22 pm #

    this is really really really really a great message which u can convey to the world to prevent divorces, heart aches, pain becoz of break ups… etc

    tis one message will solve all in this world………….. i have undergone this similar episode in my life….

    thanks for making my views clear… now i feel i have found the proper guidance for my life…

    may god bless u

  19. Anthony March 23, 2010 at 12:15 pm #

    I’m very happy to have tumbled on to this blog ( Thanks Eddie). From what it sounds like nearly all of you are taking a good look at yourselves and trying to find real answers.

    I’ve been separated now for around 16 months of my marraige of 17 years. The separation, now divorce (St. Pats day) has been very hard, and has left me feeling hallow, empty, angry, well you name it. The ex announced just announced to me that she met someone and will be going to Europe to get married in September. As you can imagine, this has crushed me, because, as it turns out, I’m still in love with her. Or at least, I think I am. If I am or not, have no power to change this situation. Slowly, I am coming to terms with it, and hopefully, one day, I will loose my hostility towards her and her new husband. This is also hard as we have 2 great kids, and my daughter will be moving in with my ex.

    I turned 40 yesterday. I have been dating a nice girl for about 7 months now. She’s right for me in many ways, but ultimately, I’m not recovered from my breakup and I carry a lot of baggage, considering. On top of that, I’m not “IN” love w/ her. I have been trying, but I just cannot will it to be. We are at a crossroads where she has to go back to her country, but she’s only staying for me. I have been thinking quite hard and have determined that I’m doing her a great diservice and need to let her go. This is very painful as I care for her and want to love her, but I have changed as a person within a commited realtionship for so long. I just don’t have what it takes to invest myself in someone else anymore.

    The glass 1/2 full on this unfortunate situation is I know we both will be better off after I let her go. I am more jaded based of my long recovery experience, so I feel I will end up on my feet faster than she might. Though I hope all the best for her. I’ll likely do this this weekend, though there NEVER seems to be a good time to do this.

  20. Sarah April 4, 2010 at 12:47 pm #

    Where is the category of love called ‘unexplainable’?

    I have been involved in a long distance relationship for two years now, and despite not seeing the man who holds my heard for one year (will be seeing him in a few days though !), my feelings for him have not swayed. We met in a conflict zone and it took two months of eye contact and smiling before we actually said hello to each other. The following 4 months we spent all of our free time together – talking (well trying to!) and drawing pictures to get our point across. We come from different countries and I don’t speak his native language and he speaks limited English. The electricity certainly flew between us.

    Once we were both back home, we continued to communicate regularly over the phone and via txt messaging (challenging when language is an issue) and I’ve visited him a few times. Due to both of our jobs and the distance between us, it is extremely difficult to see one another but when we are together ….. sighhhhh… He treats me like an absolute princess and the physical/emotional connection we have is mindblowing.

    For me, I feel like I would wait as long as I had to, to see where this relationship will take us but at the same time there is no pressure to make things happen.

    Is there a definition for that?

  21. lili April 30, 2010 at 4:56 am #

    wow. i am in love with this site. my boyfriend of 5 years ended things with me two day ago,and it was ROUGH!! I entered a crazy depression and anxiety state back in November and I have been all over the place in trying to find that happiness i once had in my life.If you have gone through anxiety and depression you know how essential your family and loved ones are at keeping you grounded. there were days when i really thought i was going crazy and my boyfriend was really a big motivator for me. I have been seeing a therapist for about a month a half and things were really looking amazing. Last week I felt happy for the first time in a looooong time and it felt soooo GOOD. my boyfriend and i were doing “great” but then he said i dont want to hurt you but i need something different. I had two panick attacks and thought i was gonna be right back where i started with my depression. then i found this site =) i dont know if something is wrong with me, but the first day i cried like there was no tomorrow and after coming on here and reading some of the posts i feel so empowered!! the fact that we are not together still hurts like hell because i though, and maybe still think, that he is “the one” but i am slowly starting to realize that the fantasy doesnt exist. i am the only one that can be “the one” for me. so my new goal has become to truly find and love myself like no one else can, and then i will be ready to commit to someone else, without forgetting about myself. thanks eddie!!!!!

  22. Alexis May 10, 2010 at 5:06 am #

    I completely agree! I have recently broken up with my boyfriend of 10 months and he was always asking me to try and be someway else that I wasn't. In the end I told him exactly that I was waiting for him to love me unconditionally, faults and all without trying to change me, because that was how I felt towards him. Needless to say we didn't work out.

  23. Christine May 27, 2010 at 1:46 am #

    Hi Eddie, I do agree with you with people thinking of “the one” it doesn't exist also, about the six (6) type of love it give me a better understanding of true love. What you said about A relationship is good if both are compatible and willing to make an effort to make it work “I totally agree”. I am going through a break up presently and recently found your site and I was feeling really down and I knew your site would have something to make me feel better and this article did.

    Thank you so much

    Christine
    Guyana, SA

  24. Vm July 18, 2010 at 12:07 pm #

    plzzz someone help me cleaar my mind am so confuse dnt knw wat to do. i just broke up with my bf of 3 months. it did hurt me a bit in the beginning but deep inside me i wasnt really happy being with him. n wen we broke up i realise am much happier without him. but now there another prob. before i met my ex bf i was friend with another guy we use to do so many fun stuff together we were just so happy being best frd we were so compatible as frd so many thng in common between us. but since i met my ex my friend got really distant from me. i never really told him about my boyfriend. but now i really miss the moment me n my friend had. i knew he liked me but he never really propose me so i cant even approach him in that way. now wen i think back i was so much happier with him n so myself with him but i dnt knw wats happening to me. why am thinkg abt my friend is it becoz i just broke up with my ex or i did liked him before but becoz he never propose me we couldnt be together. wats wrong with me….what to do???

  25. BL August 4, 2010 at 6:05 pm #

    Definitely agree with the concept of “the one” – there is none or that you'd never know until the very end. If the hearts of both parties are in the right place, then nothing can stop them from sustaining the relationship.

    Thanks for sharing your insights, Eddie. I'm only on my third article and I'm feeling a whole lot more about my recent break up.

  26. Priyanka Kwatra August 5, 2010 at 6:57 am #

    I am going through a break up right now and going through immense pain. My boy friend just told me that he has found his childhood crush and wants to be with her. That's it, in the middle of the relationship he was already in and we were together for about 2 years.

    • Vaidrajan September 6, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

      He was never yours. Probably you have blind folded yourself

  27. Lashanfmortimer August 19, 2010 at 11:37 am #

    I just recently came out of a two plus year relationship and at first when the person ended it,I was so crushed it was like my whole world fell apart. There was nights where i tossed and turned, cried over my lost love but ther was nothing i could of done it was over. So thru the pain i googled the Question ” How to get thru a breakup and in the google search i found this site and i am glad that i did. With the help of the many articles i found hope…the no contact rule especially. But eventually my ex broke down and he was the one to come back and claimed that he misses me hesitant i am but what God has for me it is for me so if we were meant to be no force can stop us! But the question is Is it really love….Does love alwaes have to hurt.Should i go BAck top what i thought was my Agape love for the two plus years we were together.!!1

  28. Princess September 1, 2010 at 12:06 pm #

    Goodbye is not the end of life but just the beginning of a new one. Life in this world is not a matter of choice but a matter of faith. Those whose faith is weak die without hope, but those who believe die with a promise of better things to come. Faith means believing in miracles. It means knowing and trusting that God is in control. It's not how much time we spend with someone that matters. We can spend so little time yet share so much love…that is more important. For memories shared with unselfish love will give us the confidence to look back not with regret but with a smile in our hearts and give us the courage to go on with life and experience its miracles.

  29. Salvi82 September 6, 2010 at 12:31 am #

    I believe in “the one”, because Christ has picked out “the one” for us.

  30. Beyondaurora September 18, 2010 at 7:42 pm #

    Hello Eddie, and hello readers. : )

    This post is really hitting on something that I'm going through. I am beyond confused, and I would appreciate any additional insight.

    I am beginning the breakup process with my boyfriend of 3 years who won't get or hold a job and won't even contribute around the house to makeup somewhat for it. I'm filing bankruptcy this week because of the financial situation I've gotten into trying to support us both. When I confront my boyfriend and assert my need for a contributing partner, not only does he get very, very angry and verbally hurtful and threatening, he responds with, “Love is not a business transaction” “You wouldn't leave me if you truly love me” and “You should love and accept me for who I am”.

    I see merit in his words, and when I read this post above about altruistic love, I begin to feel like I am indeed throwing our love away. (At the same time, I feel like with his actions (or inaction) and watching me go to work everyday while he sits at home and watches TV or goes on Facebook, in of itself is throwing our love away. It's confusing!)

    But I also am experiencing a bit of that “pragma” insight and recognize that love is both altruistic and pragmatic, that marriage — which is my ultimate relationship goal — requires both love and partnership because life is more than love, and marriage is sharing both love and a life with another.

    I also recognize that as much as I try to give freely with an open heart, I feel resentment towards him and feel so small, like I am just being walked all over. I find myself nagging and complaining and being moody, and I don't like that about myself at all.

    I'm just so torn — I don't want to throw away love, and I don't want to feel poorly about myself because I feel that the man I love can take advantage of me without remorse. Sigh. Again, any response is appreciated.

  31. KA September 20, 2010 at 2:16 pm #

    Hi Eddie and everyone,

    I found this website during my last breakup and have remained attached to it. I'm back here with a relationship question.

    I met my current partner abroad over the summer. We were in the same overseas research facility and discovered almost immediately that we had so many things in common – had lived in the same country a few years back, had similar research interests and concerns as graduate students. We hung out a lot with another friend of his, whose boyfriend broke up with her in the beginning of our program. I got to know my partner through that experience as well, witnessing how much he cared for his friend. What I really found unique about him compared to other people that I had dated before was a real effort to rationalize and explain issues, to get to the bottom of them, while being supportive at the same time. We started dating about 3 weeks after we had met. Things were going mostly well although we had one big argument. Then I was told that I need to be self-confident and happy with myself if I want this relationship to work. I asked my partner if he would be by my side while I work on that. After a short hesitation, telling me that those are things I need to fix for myself, he agreed and said I have his full support.

    We spent 2 months overseas and I came back home 2 weeks before him. We live on the two opposite sides of the country (east-west coast) and had already decided on keeping a long-distance relationship about which I was initially very skeptical about but gradually warmed up to the idea because I thought we had great chemistry and were very compatible as partners. I was willing to make the effort, or at least give it a try for the sake of us.

    My partner visited me in the city I currently live, and we spent about 10 days together. We had one or two arguments during that time, but we had always been able to resolve them which left me with a clear conscience that we parted on a good note.

    Less than a week after my partner had gone back to California where he permanently resides, we had a very unpleasant conversation on the phone. It was caused by a statement I made which now I feel was quite intrusive into his personal space. I very much regretted my impulsiveness in bringing up the issue but we had to end the conversation in a hurry because he had to leave for a meeting. Late in the evening he called me and asked me why I had gotten upset with him again. He brought up all the times we had entered in an argument and that hurt me and took me by surprise at the same time, as I had thought that we had moved beyond these challenges. He insisted we needed to take a break and think about the issues we've had, and for me to work on my lack of self-confidence, my fears of being abandoned, the hurt that I feel from some of the comments he has made (on the understanding that the latter has no grounding and is unproductive). I begged him not to do this to me. The word “break” immediately related to another word, break-up, and I cried begging him to either break up with me or stay with me, the idea of not only not being able to see him, but being unable to talk to him was tearing me apart. I felt horrible for about a day and things started to calm down. I relied on heavy support from close friends and even left town for the weekend to be able to take my mind off it for a while. 4 days later, I feel considerably better. I know there is right in his words and I am open to the idea of self-improvement and personal growth through working out this relationship. I am worried however about the seeming absence of two things: 1) forgiving; 2) unconditional acceptance. If my partner brings back issues we had in the past, is he willing to forgive me anything at all or would I be living this relationship in constant guilt and fear that I will mess up something and be kicked out? If my partner is asking me to change 3 months after we had started dating, does that not infringe on my personal freedom to decide the things that I want to change about myself? I guess what I wonder is, would it be a healthy relationship if I chose to continue it and work on these issues, or would it be a very big compromise with myself? If my partner says that he needs a “secure, happy and self-confident partner” because this is the only way the relationship will likewise be happy and secure, isn't he rather looking for a perfect partner with no issues and no fears? How do I tell him that I can only work on those things with him? I feel like if he isn't helping me work on my imperfections, if he isn't there to show me love and support, there is no point in remaining in this relationship.

    • Hot Alpha Female October 25, 2010 at 7:11 am #

      Hey Ka,

      It sounds like to me, that you are at an emotional maturity level which is greater than your current partner. Yes you may have things in common, like a common history and you met in a mutual environment, but are your values aligned? Is how you handle arguments and how you overcome obstacles aligned? Is he able to grow at the same rate as you are growing.

      I find that a lot of the time relationships are there to show us, what we want and also what we don't not want in a partner. The only thing that stunts our growth is the length of time we hold onto a partner, hoping that he is the right person.

      I would take a reassessment of where you are at the moment. Of what you really want. Take some time to get that emotional distance from your partner and see what your mind not just your heart has to say.

      Deep down I'm sure you already know what you need to do.

      Hot Alpha Female

  32. Tmlehtin October 12, 2010 at 3:07 am #

    Hey.. interesting article. I can honestly say I felt the glorified, pure altruistic “agape” type of love for my ex. I would have done anything for her, even given my life. Never did I ask or even expect anything in return. Personalities and values matched perfectly too, which made it too good to be true. But I think she never felt the same kind of love towards me, and that's what killed it. This was years ago. Problem is, if I happened to run into her somewhere, all the old feelings would come up instantly.

  33. aegis October 15, 2010 at 2:57 pm #

    After reading I can now see what my relationship with my ex has eventually amounted to. It has always been Eros for me, because she is beautiful, but as time passed it has become abundantly clear, mostly on my part, that it was Mania. I thought so highly of her and less of me, more and more. She got to the point where she felt like I wanted to control her and it became too much for her. I only come out of this marriage felling lower than before. This type makes it even harder for me, as she is already over it (or doing a wonderful job of faking it) and I see no way of finding someone as good or better. After reading many of these articles I realize I must work to improve myself before I can even attempt to have a successful relationship.

  34. Hot Alpha Female October 25, 2010 at 7:06 am #

    I think it takes a whole bunch of relationships in categories 1-4 before you can truly appreciate loves in 5-6. I agree on your definition of true love. It is about unconditional love and daily commitment to eachother. Its about compatibility of values and caring about someone's needs before your own. This is love without the ego. Without the attachment, without the need to control.

  35. Luke October 25, 2010 at 10:01 am #

    “What do you think is the definition of true love for you? Please share in the comments section below.”

    I have absolutely no idea. My breakup has taught me that I know absolutely nothing about anything. As much as I'd like to say “I think Love is this, and this and this…” the truth is, the fickle nature of human beings and our feelings will continue to catch us completely off guard at how quickly they can seem to change, turning our world upside down again and again and again.

  36. Dumpee_Guy November 7, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

    I believe in unconditional love, as I unconditionally loved my ex. Unfortunately the unconditionality thing is actually what drove her away. It made her lose all the excitement that she hungered about the relationship. It made her feel like she was bossy and that I always did what she wanted (which apparently is a bad thing).

    Basically it made her think I'm just a wimp. No matter how many times I told her that the things I did for her I did because that's what I wanted to do. Then one day she says that she doesn't feel like we have a romantic relationship, and it's more like we're just friends. She has had a rough childhood with not that much loving or parents staying around, whereas I have always been loved very much my both my parents.

    I've never felt so bad in my life. I was in shock, fainting, feeling sick. I couldn't eat for days. Then I found your site and it has helped me a lot. I did some research on the no contact rule and applied it, just to make her realize that it's loving or nothing.

    It's been a week now and I can almost eat again. Sometimes I still wish I had the strength to be her friend, as I still care about her. But I know I'm only going to break myself when she starts going out with some exciting drug addict or “manly” heavy metal clown.

    Back to the original subject. I don't believe that I'm ever going to RECEIVE the same kind of love that I give. And I find it very hard to settle for less. As for keeping the girls, I think in the future I'm going to have to hide some of my love and not be that nice anymore.

    I'd appreciate any comments very much.

    • sfluv November 10, 2010 at 12:57 am #

      no dont do that please b/c you will find the love you deserve one day and if you close down maybe it wont b that easy to open up next time that its right. I have thought like you though to b honest, its been a week since this whole no contact thing and I was the one who broke up with him but only b/c i too felt i wasnt getting the love that i was giving back, but dont loose hope work on finding joy within urself and in time when you are ready try again. i am going to try and give my self a year to focous on me and find what makes me the happiest and then after that time start dating but where the road leads only a fool would say so lets just walk on this path and have faith. best of luck to you

    • Cold_Patrol December 3, 2010 at 2:28 am #

      You are right. Same happened with me. I was always there when she needed me. I used to so happy by being around her and i idolized herself as “the one” and i gave her that much love that when i was far from my family, i used to call her lot rather than my family. How could a love to a mother( who bore 9 months of pain and then brought me into this world with Such a pain during pregnancy) be fading in front of a girl whom i know only one year ago? I was such a dumb ass giving her everything that she wanted. What did i got in return? Avoidance, Ignorance! And Right now i am commenting on this site Just because of that girl. Well, the most hurtful situation in life is when “YOu are hurt by the things which are beyond YOUR control. I mean to say, if you are hurt by things which Are in your control then You can fix it. For example if you are bad at studies Its your action that is making You feel hurt. But when somebody dumps you and blame You for all that happened. It Sucks. BUT no more. You did a great job by Applying No contact rule. Please, Never Ever Ever try to contact her again. cause i ve felt that pain And i don’t want You to be in such a mess.I stalked her on a face-book just to see that her wall was fulled by wall the LOVE Symbol by guy and she was flirting so much in her wall. It was never a True Love by her. If it was then instead of typing the comment here i would have said ” Dear i miss you so much” in her Ims. And when u love so much to a girl, as you said, It would be very hard for us to see her with another Drug addict or a PUNK emo. Its been two days of my formal breakup and three months since she started avoiding me.For all these three months, i tried to make it better But REMEMBER. GIRLS ARE LIKE BIRD. WHEN THEY ARE IN YOUR GRASP, YOU FEEL SO GOOD. BUT ONCE WHEN THEY FLY THEY WILL NEVER EVER EVER COMEBACK. If small trivial matter like misunderstanding could end a relationship, how strong was that? Weren’t you in a dark room? Get OUT. WAKE up. REALIZE there are a lot more things you have to done. And when you re in despair. Take a look around every one is different. Every one is a star. Each of us have some purpose in life. Accomplish It. REACH out and grab the love of friends. family.

  37. Shelley Dunivan January 11, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

    I was recently in a relationship of 2 years, we knew each other about 6 months before we actually got together as a couple. This man is, and still is the most caring, compassionate, giving, altruistic, empathetic person I have ever meet in my life. I could go on for a long time about his qualities. He rarely ever puts anyone down, always tries to see the good in others, you can betray him in some way and come to him in need and he will do anything he can to help you. He holds no grudges, no judgments, no resentments towards anyone, is not ever critical of me or any one else. I have to say of all the men I ever dated he has the qualities that I would want in anyone I was looking to have a relationship with. He wakes up in the morning and goes to bed at night with a song in his heart. Everyday is going to be a great day. We were together for almost 2 years, but there was one problem that to me was a deal breaker and I could not look the other way. It destroyed what I saw as a beautiful warm, giving, caring relationship. He is a recreational and I mean maybe once every 6 months, crack smoker. Although he only did it once in a great while, once was enough to get us both put in jail if he got busted with it on the premises. I am not a user, not even recreational. I lived with him at the time and was terrified of going to jail for something I was not involved in. It eventually wore down the relationship, caused all kinds of arguments, which I started, but I could not live like that. His dealer would come over to the house and I was fearful he was followed and not knowing how much stuff he had on him when he was in the house. I am devastated by this. I have absolutely no other issues with this man but this. How do I deal with the loss of someone so special to me, when everything else is so mutually satisfying?

  38. Nanette_maming January 20, 2011 at 11:34 am #

    Hi! Eddie…I’ve search for the real definition of true love in the web and I bumped to your article.It is such a wake-up call for me…I’ve experienced to be in love a couple of times…most of it are painful ones(especially right now). I’m in love with this guy for almost a year now…I love his whole entire being….but he doesn’t give a damn about it if I’m in love with him..to cut the story short he’s not in love with me. And I was trying really hard to forget about him..but I just end up going back to the same feeling. It’s like I’m on a quicksand…if I try to get-out is just keep pulling me back…and getting deeper and deeper. As I read your article, true love must begin within oneself and not to give your whole life to your love one..instead spare some for yourself. Just in case that part you’ve given.. been broken you have save some love for you to nurture.

  39. BABA...BABABOOMANDCRASH November 29, 2011 at 5:58 am #

    Being in love to me, true love is non obsessive non rebound true deep honest to goodness feeling of attraction, joy,compatability in personality and values.  When you really really like the person for who they are their good and their bad qualities and wouldnt even want to change a damn thing about them.  They make your heart sing not unlike how you feel when you are watching your child sleep peacfully but with the added sexual or chemitry that you feel with the significant other.  Thats what I had just 9 days ago.  I forgot to add respect and caring thoughtfullness  all those things, I was lucky to have experienced such a wonderful time in my life and such love I never in my 43 years had ever expereinced. So enourmously sad that its gone but thankful I at least have felt such a thing.

  40. J park March 13, 2013 at 6:07 am #

    You are a lifesaver Eddie!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH! You have changed another life forever!

  41. lost_one April 12, 2013 at 4:50 pm #

    “Agape” love actually destroyed my last relationship. Accepting people as who they are is great and all, but sometimes not trying to change your partner (or yourself) is more detrimental. Had we been harsh and told each other what changes HAD to be made, our relationship would have lasted… a little longer.

    • Eddie Corbano April 12, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

      Thank you for commenting, I know what you mean… having your personal needs met is definitely a precondition to happiness.

      And meeting the needs of BOTH partners is the foundation for a lasting relationship.

  42. Debbie R April 14, 2013 at 10:21 pm #

    Is it possible that “true love” is defined by the two in the relationship? I believe that true love is a combination, to one degree or another, of all 6 forms of love. We all want to be loved unconditionally. We all have needs within us (possible driven by unmet needs during our years of formation as children). We all want to love and be loved. It is part of the human condition. We are also relational people. Relationships and love go hand-in-hand, not just sexual relationships. I believe there are very valid points in all of these posts but I believe love is more about desiring what is best for the relationship as a whole rather than what’s in it for me or you. Back to my original question. Can ‘true love’ be defined by the two in a relationship? In every relationship there is “you” and “me” with the relationship being about the “space” created between the “you” and the “me”. That space is a give and a take from each party. When one side takes more than it gives then you have an imbalance and the relationship becomes distorted. Does this make sense to anyone? Just curious.

    I happen to be involved with a man who is everything I had ever dreamed of in a man. I have been married twice, the first time at 17, divorced a year later. The second time to a man whom I met, married within two months at 18, and had three beautiful children with. That lasted for 35 years. Separated for 5 years now and finally divorced 2 months ago I have been with this new man for a year…today. There is a sweetness to our relationship…one that has a tenderness, caring, loving, affectionate (not just sexual), I would do anything for him and he would do anything for me kind of relationship. I was just diagnosed with breast cancer and he has been there with me through it all…and has not changed the way he treats me, talks to me, or loves me in any way. We both have been through terrible marriages and both feel this is the truest love either has ever known. We both are very respectful of one another, both very considerate of one another…and I feel we both love each other, agape love. But, back to what I said earlier…isn’t true love a part of each type of love in one relationship? I am open for discussion…thanks for taking the time to read this. I love these types of discussions…very subjective, yet based on experience, and very philisophical. :-)

  43. Farnam May 30, 2013 at 11:37 am #

    Dear Eddie,
    as you saw my email, I was confused with my semi break up, but this post made my eyes open. I understand, what I had was not true love, it was #4, so it ended and hurt me badly. I feel I now I took a big step in order to heal and get over my Ex(I think I am done with him now).
    Thank you so much Eddie.

  44. Vivien Shore June 16, 2014 at 12:52 pm #

    I love this article. I also used to have an idealistic view of love and ‘the one’. I am now divorced and have a couple of relationships behind me too; currently single.
    I now have a much more realistic idea of love and the kind of relationship I want with a man.
    For me, it’s deep understanding and acceptance of one another, unconditionally. I also agree that it is unselfish; giving and expecting nothing in return. This to me used to seem impossible; how can one give with out expecting anything back? But that showed me that I had not experienced love in it’s rawest form. For me the Bible’s definition of love is the truest being that it is unselfish, kind, bears all things, hopes all things, does not envy, is not proud etc.
    I believe it’s rare but possible to have a close, connected relationship with another person based on unselfish love. And I know it doesn’t come easy but takes work from both partners. I look forward to finding that someone with whom I will have such a relationship.
    Thanks for your blog Eddie, I really enjoy and appreciate it.

  45. Eduard December 6, 2014 at 12:19 am #

    Hey,

    I have a small thing that I honestly don’t understand.
    Is the fact that I desire in a relationship to have my emotional needs met a selfish love ?
    I mean why will I be in a relationship in the first place if not to receive what I seek and what makes me happy.
    For example, I have the need to be touched a lot . Does it mean I shouldn’t have this met

    Thanks for everything and by the way, what you do is amazing,
    Ed

    • Eddie Corbano December 7, 2014 at 5:50 pm #

      No, to desire to have your own emotional needs met in a relationship is not selfish love, I’d say it’s prerequisite for a fulfilling relationship. If your needs are not met, you will be very unhappy without really knowing why…

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