Falling In Love vs. The Art of Loving
How I learned the difference
Have you ever fallen in love, like madly in love, pursued a relationship, and a few years later watched in bewilderment as it fell apart? Did you ever wonder why that happens? Yeah, me too. Several years ago. We’d been together for four years. We planned to get married. Then things went kaput.
I wondered to myself: What went wrong? How did we get to that place? Things had been so-o-o-o good, and then they weren’t. What happened?
My Experience of Falling In Love
I knew I was falling in love, and I was obsessed. I saw her, I knew her eyes, and as I looked at her, I was intensely attracted. My body ached to be with her. My imagination was beheld by her image. It was as if my mind were possessed and I could not turn it off. My heart was out of control. My captivation was complete.
I remember that I would think of her involuntarily — at the grocery store or gas station, in the middle of a client meeting, or as I pulled into the garage and prepared to greet my kids. I would see images of her and fantasize time together — sometimes sexual fantasies, but usually more mundane fantasies of dates, walking together on a trail, or talking before a fire far into the night. I didn’t create these fantasies, they occurred. They erupted from within my soul spontaneously, and there seemed to be nothing I could do to stop them.
I’m told that women’s experience can be very similar.
Indeed, this experience of being captivated by a new lover is widespread — in fact, nearly universal. It is how actual love usually begins. But what is actually going on?