Love is not a symphony. Love is an essential part of the symphony, the part that the audience waits for in anticipation. The reason people came to hear the performance.What of Love?
True Love, Soul Mates, Life Partners
It is good if a child’s life is filled from the beginning with living examples of genuine love. A loving mother and father can provide what is needed to help the children find their niches, to give them the tools with which they can find their own ways and create their own paths.*
As a child grows toward adulthood, it is normal to look for things in the adult world which were missing from childhood. Young people may hear a lot about “true love,” and say to themselves, “That sounds like a good thing!”
But what is true love, and how will a person know when they have found it?
When I think about true love, I often trip over a related idea: “soul mate.” The two things may go together, and if they do then those are lucky lovers indeed. But true love can be built over time if the hearts are true, while soul mates seem to have been born to enrich each other — even if they never meet in the real world.
Another confusion is between “true love” and “falling in love.” Falling in love is much easier, and can be a lot like quitting drinking.
“It’s easy to quit drinking. I’ve done it a thousand times.”WC Fields
And many people have fallen in love a thousand times — but never quite seem to find true love.
Falling in love is like being under the influence of a powerful drug. It is a wonderful feeling, to be sure. But it usually wears off, and you had better hope that you did not do too many stupid things while under the influence.
But if it doesn’t wear off — but merely calms down a bit — you may have a case of true love on your hands. If so, buckle up.
Here are some characteristics of “true love:” (Source)
1. You care about this person unconditionally. A tell-tale sign that you’ve found true love is that you absolutely and undeniably adore your partner with no strings attached. In other words, no matter what circumstances may befall you and through good times as well as bad, you support and deeply care for this person. Unconditional love is at the very heart of what true love means and entails.
2. You fully accept your partner. An additional indicator of true love is that you understand and accept your partner for the person who he or she truly is. You’re not trying to change your mate, fix him or her and/or turn him or her into a different person. Rather, you fully accept, appreciate and adore your partner, flaws and all.
3. You can talk about anything. When you’ve found true love, it means that you can candidly and honestly discuss anything with this person. True love implies that you’re completely truthful with your mate, aren’t holding back different aspects of your past and are able to fully open up to him or her. You share an intimacy that’s emotional as well as physical, and your loving connection is stronger because of your willingness and ability to be open and vulnerable around each other.
4. You’re completely yourself with this person. When you’ve found true love, you’re able to be totally authentic with your partner. You’re not pretending to be someone you’re not, feigning interests, passions or pastimes and/or acting in a way that doesn’t reflect the real you. Being yourself in your relationship is essential to experiencing true love.
5. You respect each other. In order to experience true love, it also means that there’s a high level of respect, kindness and compassion between you and your partner. You can empathize with one another, see each other’s point of view and are able to resolve conflicts and squabbles in a way that’s constructive and respectful of each other’s well-being.
6. You have similar values. In order to experience true love, your morals and values have to be aligned with those of your partner. While you may have your differences, such as where you grew up, your religious background or simply your obsession with football, true love means that you’re on the same page when it comes to distinguishing right from wrong. In a word, having similar principles is a principle component of true love.
7. Your happiness levels feed off of each other. If you’re wondering if you’ve found true love, it’s important to pay close attention to your true feelings and emotions. Does making this person happy make you happy in return? Does surprising him or her or doing favors for your partner give you a rush of joy as well? When you and your partner both have a mutual desire to bring happiness and contentment to one another, you should be happy to know that you’re experiencing true love.
8. You’re a team. When you’ve found true love, it means that you’re fully committed, dedicated and devoted to each other. With true love, you and your partner work together as one unit to enrich each other’s lives for the better. And rather than behaving in a selfish or egotistical way, you think in terms of “we” instead of “me.” When it comes to true love, your mate is really your teammate.
The soul mate relationship is different from cases of true love, although there can be some overlap. In the rare cases where soul mates also experience true love with each other, it is crucial for the lovers/soul mates to maintain a sense of perspective and connection with the real world around them. That can be difficult if they are both caught up in the intoxicating experience of love while also being synchronously locked together in the soul mate connection.
Successful “life partners” do not need to be soulmates, and they do not absolutely have to be in a “true love” experience. As long as there is deep respect, admiration, and trust, a life partner relationship is possible. With the addition of friendship to the above mix, a deep and enduring love is very possible. (Source)
- You feel a deep, spiritual connection to this person almost like you have known them for a long time.
- You have flashbacks or deja vu moments where you feel that you have been together before.
- You seem to understand each other and have a similar way of thinking.
- You may have similar flaws or habits, or you both had similar challenges during childhood.
- Your connection is intense and so too is the relationship. Often it can move from extreme highs to extreme lows.
- You feel in sync with each other even when you are not physically together. There may be a feeling of having to team up together to conquer something.
- You know intuitively what the other is thinking or feeling. You feel very in-tune and connected with their thoughts and actions.
- Your relationship is emotional, challenging and can bring things out in you that you didn’t know existed.
- You may experience huge shifts and changes in your life when you first meet this person.
- Your relationship may not last forever but the love is always there.
Life Partner Relationship
- You feel attracted to each other physically and resonate with each others values.
- You enjoy getting to know each other and learn about your differences and similarities- everything about each other feels new and exciting.
- You get along like best friends- your relationship does not suffer from extremes.
- Your relationship is based on logical or intellectual decisions.
- You resonate with each others beliefs, ideas or religion/philosophy.
- You both feel a sense of financial and emotional stability by being together.
- Your relationship is based on being physically present and creating new memories.
- You feel the need to marry or start a family in order to ‘cement’ your relationship.
In the book and movie The Princess Bride, Wesley and Buttercup were not soul mates nor did they have true love at the beginning. Early in their “relationship” Buttercup would have scorned any idea of choosing Wesley as a life partner. True love began as a dream in Wesley’s mind, and became reality when Buttercup eventually came to share that dream.
The intensity of true love can be deep enough to carry the lovers into a committed “life partner” relationship, which can help smooth the interface between the lovers and the often abrasive outside world.
The coming of children and interaction with in-laws, friends, work and business associates, and the practical problems of living, add deeper dimensions to the relationships that overlap and evolve.
Every author needs to consider his important characters in their deepest and most formative stages and longings. And of course, every person is the author of his own life, whether he knows it or not. That is why even an unemotional, no-nonsense kind of person needs occasionally to consider the centers of gravity inside himself which tug and pull in different directions — often quite uncomfortably.
For even as love crowns you, so shall he crucify you. Even as he is for your growth, so is he for your pruning.The Prophet
Yes, it is good if a child’s life is filled from the beginning with living examples of genuine love. A loving mother and father truly should provide what is needed to help their children find their niches, to give them the tools with which they can find their own ways and create their own paths.
Such loving wisdom, generosity, and unselfishness are rare in parents, however. The parent too often tries to use to child as an instrument for achieving something that was missing in his own childhood. The child must then try to find examples of unselfish love, wisdom, and generosity elsewhere in his life, often unsuccessfully.
One of my favorite movies about what a loving couple relationship should be is the movie Rob Roy with Liam Neelson and Jessica Lange.