Ah, love is a wonderful thing. There’s nothing quite like that initial giddy feeling, the flood of feel-good hormones and sexual tension, the anticipation, the electricity you feel with every kiss and touch from the one you love. But when initial flood of oxytocin begins to wane, do you find yourself frazzled, frightened, and fiending for another fix?
“As someone with a love addiction, your sense of self becomes stifled. Your measure of self-worth is based on whether you are in a relationship, which makes you dependent on your partner,” says Monique Belton, PhD, author of “The Essential Guide to Overcoming Obsessive Love.”
Worse, if you spend your life ‘chasing the dragon,’ you’ll miss out on what a real, lasting love feels like. True is, all that giddiness you feel is temporary. It’s called infatuation–puppy love, a crush. Real love comes after the fog of hormones clears.
If you do any of these five things on a regular, you might want to check yourself:
–Fantasize about spending the rest of your life with someone you just met. In other words, if you putting a “Mrs.” in front of dude’s last name to see how your first name would sound, take note.
–You have a hard time letting go of relationships, no matter how long the duration. You just HAVE to HAVE a man, even if he’s just an old throwaway piece of a man.
–You engage in smothering behaviors. (e.g. You want to sit on the sidelines while your man plays three hours of basketball with his buddies, call or text more than 30 times a day, show up unexpectedly at his apartment)
–You experience an INTENSE initial physical attraction.
–You have a fear of abandonment or rejection. (Happens a lot with when a father isn’t involved with a child’s upbringing)
If you recognize yourself in that list up top, not to worry–you’re not doomed. The key is to recognize the behavior, acknowledge it, and then change your way of thinking.
Notes to Yourself
Keep a log to chronicle each time you feel that obsessive itch so you learn to recognize the behaviors and observe the frequency in which you feel them.
Get a Life!
Seriously–get one. If your entire life revolves around love, thinking about love, wanting love, etc., then chile, you need more things to think about. It may seem hard at first, but engage in activities that give you pleasure that don’t involve you French kissing somebody.
Snap Out of It!
Try the good old rubber band trick. Whenever you feel the need to engage in stalking or obsessive behaviors, gently flog yourself by snapping a rubber band on your wrist.
Sometimes overcoming love addiction and obsessive love is too much for one person to overcome. Save your heart and possibly your health by seeking outside counseling or a support group.