Kinds of Love
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Advice: 3 Kinds of Love
There are three
kinds of love:
love as a feeling,
love as a decision/choice, and love as an action.
of these three kinds of love is the cause of much needless pain
In an attempt
to clear up this confusion, let's take a closer look at each of
these three kinds of love.
Love as a feeling.
Oh, what a feeling.
Let's face it, falling in love feels great. So does being in love.
Throughout the centuries, poets, writers and singers have all extolled
the glories of being in love.
is that it doesn't last.
Sorry to bring
you back to Earth with such a jolt, but let's be honest. The emotional
high that we feel just doesn't last on a day-to-day basis.
phrase "and they lived happily ever after"? Even though this phrase
can be found at the end of most fairy tales, our culture seems to
have accepted it as fact.
might be saying at this point, "aren't we sounding cynical today."
Maybe so, but if you'll hang in there with me, reader, it's going
to get better really quick.
and normal for the feeling of love to ebb and flow in a relationship.
That's why it's so important to understand that in addition to love
as a feeling there are two other kinds of love.
Love as a decision/choice
Love is also
a decision and a choice. There are times when we do not feel like
loving in any way. In relationships, however, we are called to love
even when we don't feel like it (sometimes especially when we don't
feel like it).
Smalley and John Trent said:
marriage involves a commitment to an imperfect person."
What this means
on a day-to-day basis is this: We may sometimes say to ourselves
when thinking about our partner,
"You know, I
really don't like you very much today."
Then this needs
to be followed by, "and I'm going to love you anyway."
The choice and
decision to love, even when we don't feel like it provides the sense
of security necessary in a relationship to make it through the inevitable
Love as an action
to being a feeling and a choice, love is also a verb.
We can have
the feeling of love, we can decide to love, we can understand all
that there is to understand about our relationship, but we won't
get very far until we take action.
I have worked with are very good at describing what is wrong with
the relationship and/or the other person. It reminds me of what
actor and comedian Lily Tomlin once said:
believe we developed language because of our deep need to complain."
One of the biggest
myths about marriage goes something like this:
"If you really
loved me, then you would (know what to do, know what to say, know
what I like, etc.)."
be further from the truth.
Instead of complaining
about our partner's behavior, we can simply ask for (request) what
we would like. Sometimes that will be a request to do something.
Other times it may be a request not to do something.
It goes something
"I would like
you to (fill in the blank)."
Then your partner
gets to say either "Yes, I can do that" or "No, I won't do that,
because (fill in the blank). What else could I do that would meet
In this way,
we can put hands and feet onto the feeling of love. The really curious
thing is that when we decide to love and take action in this way,
it can lead us back to that feeling of love.
Herring is a Relationship Coach, Speaker, and Syndicated Relationship
Columnist. Visit SecretsofGreatRelationships.com
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