What Is Love?
Love is a strong emotion. It is similar to liking someone but the difference is, love comes with a sense of commitment and a deep caring towards the other person. When you love another person, you see them for who they are, you understand them and you genuinely want to see them happy whether they’re with you or not. It is a devotion and a warm attachment filled with enthusiasm for another person.
What is infatuation?
Infatuation is the feeling of falling heads over heels for someone at the first glance. Yes, I’m sorry to break it to you but love, at first sight, isn’t love at all, it's infatuation playing with your head. The feeling of being smitten or infatuation can be experienced towards someone you’re in a platonic relationship with too. With time, infatuation can turn into love as well.
Signs of Infatuation
1. Unreasonable Passion
When you’re infatuated by someone, you feel unreasonably passionate about them. You make up this false perfect image of them in your head that doesn’t logically make sense because you don’t even know them well enough to form an opinion. Hence, if you’re feeling unreasonably passionate about a connection, chances are that it's infatuation and not love.
2. They can’t make mistakes
Infatuation makes you believe that they can’t make mistakes. In your mind, they’re this flawless human that just isn’t capable of doing anything that makes them unattractive or bad. That textbook perfect images of them in your head gives the person so much dopamine hit that they aren’t willing to face the reality soon. Hence, they tend to ignore the mistakes they make to hold on to their fantasy. Another sign that a person is infatuated – they don’t want to face the music.
Obsession is a stage that a person hit with infatuation will experience. They will become possessed by this need of digging everything about this person. They will start treating them as a celebrity and put them on a pedestal. You start believing that they're being too kind to keep you around because they deserve better than you. You become obsessed on so many levels that your judgment gets skewed.
What Is The Difference Between Love And Infatuation?
Being in love and infatuation are two completely different emotions. There is a fine line between the two but it is blurred quite a lot of times and I can understand why. The major distinction is that infatuation can take over you at the first glance while love needs time and effort to make its place. Although, infatuation can turn to love with time as well. To help you understand whether you’re in love or just dealing with a case of infatuation – here are a few differences:
Infatuation is shallow while love is deep
Infatuation is based on the first few impressions. Maybe you caught the other person in a heroic act or their appearance is just like a character straight out of a movie which made you go crazy about them. While love is deep. It makes itself home after knowing the other person – seeing them through thick and thin and falls in love with their flaws as well as their perfections, with their highs as well as their lows.
Flaws and Growth
Infatuation blinds the person of the other individual’s flaws while love calls for acceptance of the faults. Infatuation covers the other person’s authentic personality with a veil of perfection which prevents the infatuated individual to be able to see their flaws or to be able to learn and grow with them. While in love, you don’t just see and accept each other’s faults, you work together to be better and to grow together.
Infatuation is short-term while love is long-term
Infatuation wears off after a short while because it isn’t based on reality while love lasts. Love comes in slow but leaves even slower because it’s powerful. Love has got a strong base – it only happened because you invested yourself and committed to it. There are a lot of cases in which couples parted for other reasons while being crazy in love with each other. When love comes, it stays for a long time.
Infatuation is selfish while love is selfless
When you’re under the influence of infatuation, you only want them because their image in your head is flawless. You want them to fulfill your fantasies. If you do get them, it’ll be a great ego boost but you won’t know how to make them happy because you just don’t know them outside of your head. Do you know what I mean? You want to have them just to satisfy your desires. That is just selfish. While when you’re in love, you want to have the other person in your life to cherish them. To make them happy because making them smile gives you joy too. Your happiness isn’t associated with their image but it’s associated with their happiness. In love, you even find happiness if the other person is happy with someone else and not you. This is the biggest difference between the two – love is selfless while infatuation is not.
How Long Does It Take For Infatuation To Become Love?
Quite a few studies have shown that infatuation can only last from 3 months to 2 years. It either goes bland after this period or you may just be in love with that individual. Even in committed relationships, the healthy period to stay infatuated with each other is 18 months to 3 years, if it prolongs – there may be underlying problems i.e. insecurities. If one doesn’t get past the infatuation stage, the beginning of the attachment stage will keep getting delayed. The sooner one gets over infatuation, the better it is for themselves and their relationships.
Signs of Love
1. You accept them to be human
Love is an emotion that’s built with time. You accept the fact that they are humans who make mistakes. If you’re in the process of falling in love with another, you won’t blindly ignore the unattractive things they do. You will treat those acts as a way to understand and accept them. Because love calls for acceptance and forgiveness. You will notice every detail about them. How they recover from their mistakes, how they change from the lesson they learned and you fall in love with every bit of them.
2. Their happiness makes you happy
Another sign of falling in love is when their happiness makes you happy regardless of your existence in the picture. Love has a very selfless aspect to it that is often overlooked. If they get a promotion and you genuinely feel like celebrating, that’s a sign that love is blooming. This applies to sadness too. When they’re suffering, you feel low too and you want to do something to live them up. This doesn’t just apply to romantic relationships. If you look closely, you will find this aspect of love with other relationships of love too – your family and friends you cherish. Hence, if you experience this with someone you’re attracted to, you might just be falling for them.
3. You see them in your future
Love comes with a want to be closer to them because you feel happy when they’re around. One of the most evident signs that you’re falling for someone is that you start planning a future with them in it. This change of thought process shows that you have developed a bond with them that you want to protect and keep in your future. I’m not talking about planning a fantasy straight out of a romantic movie you watched the night before. I’m referring to giving into a companionship that will last through all the difficult and happy phases that life unfolds. You see both of your growth as individuals together.
It is easy to confuse love and infatuation but if you give it just a few minutes of contemplation, the difference will be evident. Both are feelings that every individual experiences quite a few times in a lifetime. Lucky are those whose infatuation turns into love and gives them their happily ever after but for others, getting infatuated with the wrong person can get you to make a decision that might cause trouble when you gain your senses back. Hence, it is better to be mindful of your feelings to avoid such a situation. Hope this article helped you in figuring out your feelings!