Common Misconceptions About Love
By Vanessa Palencia
A lot of people have really twisted ideas about what love is, and I’m not talking about the kinky stuff.
It seems that we have allowed other people’s opinions about what’s healthy in a relationship and what’s considered excusable behavior to come between us and our love life. I’ve heard countless times about how couples want to wring the neck of their partner because of something irritating they said. I’ve heard someone jokingly express gratitude for their girl’s night or guy’s night out, because it gives them the chance to be ‘free,’ I’ve heard couples talk about using pugil sticks as a safe way to release anger, and I’ve even heard of couples avoiding each other because they don’t really like their partner at the moment. But the thing is, while I may scoff and gasp in shock at these things, in today’s society these things are considered normal in a relationship. People will laugh at these things like it’s just another comic event. That worries me, because somehow people have misconstrued these thoughts and actions with love.
As someone who’s had her fair share of dating experiences, heartbreaks, and is now in a successful and loving relationship, I’ve grown tired of hearing these common misconceptions about love, so I’ve decided to create a series to talk about them.
These are six of the most common misconceptions about love that we need to get rid of. If you have other misconceptions that you’ve come across, comment them below and let’s start raising awareness!
Misconception #1: Jealousy is a sign of true love
This common misconception frustrates me to the core. I absolutely hate this one. Like, are we in 8th grade? I’m sorry but jealousy is not a sign of true love. Jealousy demonstrates immaturity and builds a relationship on a weak foundation full of distrust and dishonesty. It’s also a huge sign that there’s a serious lack of self confidence and personal development. This also goes for those of you who like to make your partner jealous. You have to ask yourself why you want to create such a negative emotion in your partner. I’ve heard some people say that they love the attention, but you have to remember that while you will most likely get that attention, it isn’t the type of attention you’re looking for and are so craving. You’ll wind up getting hurt again. Jealousy and trying to get someone jealous is a sign that the relationship is not founded on truth and genuine love.
Misconception #2: Love is about compromising and finding a common ground
I actually used to believe this one because it made sense. But as I started digging deeper into this misconception, I started realizing that compromises are only standards that we’ve lowered, so we essentially settle for less. That’s not what love should ever be about. Love is about collaborating together as a couple and finding something entirely new that works for the both of you. Through collaboration, you can exceed both of your expectations because you work together to find creative solutions that don’t sacrifice your values or desires. Remember, when you’re in a relationship, you work together as a team.
Misconception #3: Love is painful
Unless you’re at the gym and building some muscle with your partner, love should not be painful. A healthy, loving relationship leaves you feeling happy and motivated to work on yourself for the better. If you’re constantly worrying about where your partner is at, fearful about your future with them, or heartbroken from their actions, then it isn’t love and you need to leave before you do any more damage to your sweet soul.
Misconception #4: It’s normal to have moments where you hate your partner
Nope. This is not normal. I repeat, this is not normal. Getting irritated that they didn’t do the dishes last night or make the bed this morning is one thing, but hating your partner is an entirely different thing. I’ve heard women talk about how they just wanted to wring the neck of their partner because of something they said or did, but whenever I inquired further about these things, it was usually stemmed from a lack of communication, respect, and deep love for their partner. Trust me, I’ve become irritated with my fiancée, and I know he’s been irritated with me, too, but we would never entertain the idea of wringing each other’s necks or spit out how much we hate each other in that moment. If you have moments where you feel like you hate your partner, I would advise that you dive deeper and figure out why and then take the necessary steps to resolve this, whether this is through counseling with your partner or simply ending the relationship.
Misconception #5: Love is 50/50
Here we go again with this BS. If I gave 50% of my effort towards my job, I’d probably get fired, right? What about if I gave 50% of my attention to the road when I’m driving? Dangerous! No one would ever want to get in a car with me. Then why do we assume that in a relationship it’s perfectly okay to give 50/50? If you want to have a solid relationship that lasts, then you must give each other 100% of your time and attention. If you say that you’re too busy to spend that much time, then maybe you should reevaluate your commitment. Remember, we always make time for the people we love and give them our best every single day.
Misconception #6: If my partner loves me, they’ll do what I ask
Love is not one-sided. I’ve heard so many women jokingly talk about ‘whipping their partners into shape,’ but I don’t think they realize how dangerous this thought process is. Or even women who feel that they need to ask permission from their husbands for certain things. A healthy relationship is one where both partners come together and collaborate. You do things together, you give freely to each other, and you establish healthy boundaries. You can say ‘no,’ and your partner should understand. By saying the words, “if you love me, you’ll do this for me” you are creating feelings of guilt and shame for your partner because this is a form of manipulation. Who wants to be manipulated into a relationship?
Remember, love is always positive. It leaves a warmth in your soul in the same way that a hot cup of coffee or tea does on a chilly winter evening. Love gives you peace and strength and helps develop you into a better person than you were before. There is never a doubt in your mind that you are with the right person and any ounce of fear is quickly eradicated. True love is like coming home and feeling completely safe and happy.