- Gender and Relationships
I love you! No really!
I love you. Three words that get said without being meant but which also scare the crap out of people so much, they run from them. What is wrong with telling someone that you have love for them? What can BE so wrong about being loved? And what about the many forms of love? Can we tar those three words with the same brush for such a magnificent feeling? No, well I don’t think so.
I for one have been emotionally retarded, unable to tell someone I have love for them or that I’m IN love with them. I source this to the fact we were not told as kids growing up, that is not to say we were not shown love but it wasn’t verbal. I shall leave my childhood issues there and move swiftly on to the now. Is it more acceptable these days to tell someone you love them? Scott Miles on BBC Radio One tells all his callers ‘love you’ and they say it back. I hear teens on the phone saying ‘love you’ after a call.... to me this is a strange thing. It’s not wrong, just a bit alien to me. I suppose I’m always afraid they may think I mean romantic love and that I want to ‘be’ with them, rather than just saying ‘hey you’re a funny sod, I love you for your humour and how you make me smile’.
Or maybe that’s just me and my underlying fear of rejection? Afraid to say those three words cos they might mean that person flees before your eyes. Been there, done that! This brings me to another poignant point – why do we give our love to the wrong people? At what point does the rose tinted glasses go on and we fail to see what that person is really like? Love like that is painful and dependant on the other person to validate you as a person worth loving. That’s not healthy love. That love kills the soul and pushes people over the edge – sometimes literally. We have all been there though and most of us are better people for surviving that kind of love. I know I have. I am faced with embarrassment the things I have done whilst being in love that in hindsight you recoil at the sheer cringe-worthiness of it all. Is that love though? It sure as hell feels like it at the time but once again, upon reflection it’s almost like an obsession party going on in your head and the other person isn’t invited! You know it’s true, be honest.
So how do you define love? It is the true meaning of life (or should be) in most spiritual and religious paths. I believe that love makes the world go round. Well actually it’s the gravitational pull of the Universe but metaphorically speaking, we all strive for love, we all want love, we all want to be loved - anyone who says otherwise is lying to themselves. And I’m not talking about romantic love either, although that is what most people secretly yearn for. If you look at any book on Inner Child, or psychology it all points to the part in our lives when we stopped feeling loved. That’s when we developed our neurosis, our inner demons that we spend years and lots of money in counselling trying to overcome. Simply it boils down to the fact that love was removed, abused or denied. Bad things happen at the hands of messed up people because they are part of a chain of events that damaged them. So they damage others and the circle goes on. At some point though, we have to break the chain of our cycles and free wheel into unknown territory. It’s scary as hell. Knowing that at some point ‘love’ has damaged your hearts and minds will make you wary to love again, to give love, to be loved, to feel you deserve to be loved. That’s where I find myself. I have suffered and survived that destructive aspect of love. But what I realise is that is not what love really is. Love is pure and without cost, it’s an energy that we can all tap in to – it’s Universal. Without it we die or feel empty and dead inside. Oh you know that’s true too.
We love our new shoes, we love our cars, we love our new gadgets and we declare it to the world. But why can’t we declare that we love a stranger for making us laugh when we were at our lowest? Why can’t we say ‘you’re awesome, you make me smile – I love you for that’? Why are we afraid to express ourselves with those three words yet tell the world wide web what we had for breakfast? We share such insignificant things on these social networks but we don’t really express ourselves do we? We don’t tell these virtual strangers that are now part of our friends list that they mean something to you. I tried to have a cull of my friends list the other day, at nearly 700 it’s out of control. But I couldn’t do it. Even though I have never met the majority of them, in their own ways, they have reached out to me, they have shared their lives, they have listened to my problems and rants on my status updates and they have liked my life, my images, my opinions and become friends. People I will never meet are not without significance and cannot simply be culled. I have discovered a rich and diverse culture of people with so many interesting variances that I am richer from the experience. I can guarantee that when I am down, someone will say something to make me laugh. I have done the same for others too.
I said on my Christmas Day radio show that we are all connected and we should all take the time to observe the world around us. People fall and need catching. I have fallen and been caught. By a virtual stranger I added on the back of a comment on someone’s status. I let that person into my life and out of the blue, she read my cry for help and rang me up. That was an amazing thing to do. I felt elated that a stranger cared to do that. I am that stranger too. I have love to give the world but strangely enough, I give little to myself.
Now that’s another can of worms! How many of us have self-love? How many of us deny ourselves love because we don’t think we are worth it? How many of us don’t love ourselves? Now come on, be brave. Chances are if you are overweight you don’t like yourself much. True enough for me. But I know that love myself, I will feel better about myself, I will lose weight. But I don’t. I look at myself in the mirror and think ‘yuck’ why would anyone want that? And that vicious cycle is what keeps the weight on. And you know what? Love put it on. It did, honest. When I was in love and happy with myself, I lost weight. When that person extracted and denied that love to me, I turned on myself and gained weight. That weight is emotional baggage. And it’s so hard to lose, maybe I should take it to Heathrow, they lose luggage all the time. You know you don’t need someone to make you feel validated, to feel loved but it helps. There’s no feeling in the world more euphoric than being in love. We shine and glow with it. And then it’s gone....here we are back to co-dependence love. How do you break a habit of a lifetime? How do you banish those demons that haunt you? How do you go on to survive a broken heart – romantically, betrayal of a friendship, rejection? All of these are ugly things. Yet we are reminded in Universal love when we stand in awe at a glorious sunset, at a babies smile, at an impromptu hug from a friend ‘just because’, a phone call from a stranger when you are down..... this is love at work.
I love you because you are you. I smile at your words, laugh at your humour and inspired by your life and what you do. We are all unique. Love is Universal and fills us all. Pass it on. It’s just three words and world may just stop spinning if we forget that. The best thing my sister Rachael ever told me is that ‘you get the love that you think you deserve’ – truth hurts. If you don’t think you are worth it you will continue to attract negative relationships. Love yourself – go on give it a try. I will if you will.
Let yourself be loved. Until you do, the weight won't shift, you won't find your true love and even if you do, you won't feel you deserve it and wil repel it. The hardest thing to do is to break the habit of a life time. It's ok, you are only human after all. Was that an 'aha!' moment? I wrote this from the heart. I put it out to the Universe. Lets see what happens... thank you for reading this. I'm great at giving advice, I just need to heed my own - don't we all!?