How can you tell if you’re in love? Is there an actual milestone point when you can confirm in your own mind (and heart) that you’re head over heels? Is love real for you or is it something else, such as lust? You see, knowing when you’re in love can be a bit tricky, especially if you just started dating. Some experts say that, after two months, it’s okay to finally say those three little words. Do you agree?
But judging from the thousands of testimonies saying that time varies for each person, it’s safe to say that you don’t have to wait for two months if you’re sure in yourself. Having said that, you might have to wait longer – a little or considerably. It’s such a personal thing that there are no rules to adhere to.
It’s not all that reassuring, we know, but hear us out. No matter how long it takes for you to fall in love, it is worth more than the waiting time you invest. Falling in love is the best feeling in the world; that’s why it’s always best to pace yourself until you find the real thing. [Read: 10 reasons why saying “I love you” too soon just sucks]
If we can’t see love and we can only feel it, how do we know that’s an actual thing and it’s real? The problem with anything that can’t be measured or seen is that there’s always going to be doubters. However, when it comes to love, everyone agrees that it’s a real, no contest thing.
Neuroscientists agree that love is real and that it isn’t something that you can control in any way. You can’t decide not to love someone, you can’t decide to love someone; there has to be a falling in love period that is totally out of your control. They also agree that love comes from the subconscious part of your mind, i.e. the bit that you have zero control over and happens without any prompt from you.
Other than that, the explanations become fuzzy. However, many agree that it’s a biological thing that evolved from our earliest ancestors. It’s a desire to find someone to mate with, someone to be with for the rest of your days and avoid loneliness. Because of all this has evolved from countless years before, it happens deep in your subconscious and it’s such a complicated process that it leads to a million emotions swirling around in your brain. That’s a great explanation of what love feels like in many ways!
So, while we can’t 100% explain what love actually is other than a feeling, we can all agree that love is certainly very real indeed. [Read: Love vs in love: What makes them so different & yet so similar?]
For one thing, it feels awesome. Being in love means that you feel happier rather than sad and that the source of that happiness mostly comes from the person you love. There are different ways a person can feel love, but it usually starts with butterflies in your chest or stomach. It’s a physical reaction that tells you that you feel strongly about someone. At that point, it could still be something else; it’s early days.
It could be infatuation, but that’s how love usually starts. Still, it’s your job to keep it alive, until the day comes when you’re finally sure that it is, indeed, real love.
Aside from that, you can also feel that you’re falling in love gradually. It isn’t as strong as a sudden jolt to your system, but a slowly increasing level of intimacy will lead you to the same path. [Read: 19 Sure signs of falling in love to watch out for]
You can’t control which category you fall into, or whether or not your partner will feel the same way. All you can do is sit tight and wait for those fuzzy feeling to overwhelm you, but in a good way.
Now to confuse you a little more. Love isn’t the same for everyone. Some people feel one way, others feel another. We’re all individual and nobody loves in exactly the same way. That’s why we have love languages.
We’ve just mentioned that not everybody loves in the same way. We don’t show love the same way and we don’t feel it exactly the same. It’s extremely personal. However, scientists have come up with a theory that explains why that is. It’s because we speak a specific love language. The key is to find out what yours is and then identify your partner’s too. Then, you can understand each other a little more and make sure that your relationship not only thrives, but you both feel appreciated and adored. [Read: How to show someone you love them: 41 Sure-fire ways]
What is love not confusing, right?
The five love languages are:
Understanding love languages helps you to work out is love real for you in that particular relationship. Otherwise, you might just be misunderstanding each other completely. [Read: The 12 qualities of a healthy relationship that keep couples happy]
For sure, it’s different for everyone, but if you can nod along to a few of these hints, the chances are you’ve fallen in love.
We live in an age where words have become just as powerful as actions. Even emojis have weight now, but the most hard-pressed words to say are “I”, “love,” and “you”. If you can say it without choking or without any remorse, then it’s safe to say that you’re confident about how you feel. [Read: When you YOU say ‘I love you’ for the first time?]
When you’re in love, you give more than you are willing to take. But the same goes for the person you’re in love with. Once you realize that you’re putting their needs above yours, you, my friend, are a strong candidate for love.
One of the most important signs to watch out for is your newfound ability to actually care about the things that are important to your partner. Rarely do we see people who are passionate about someone else’s interests, but with love, it’s a package deal. If you love what they love, then you probably love them too. [Read: How to better a relationship and improve your love life]
Dating is the time where everything starts to slowly bubble up to the surface, like your flaws. Some flaws are inexcusable—being abusive, being resentful, being deceitful, etc—but some, like physical flaws and annoying habits, can be overlooked. If you start to see a person for who they are and not what they lack, it’s probably true that you’ve fallen for them.
Trust is very hard to come by, but it’s easy to see once a person has proven themselves to you. There’s no need to test them or make them jump through hoops. All you need to do is appreciate the effort they’re making, and decide whether or not it’s enough for you to trust them. [Read: How to prove you love someone the right way]
Being in love helps you become a better person. You’re more motivated, not because you want to be great in your partner’s eyes, but because you are happy. People are inspired when they’re happy. And when you’re happily in love, things will simply fall into place.
Of course, we all have our doubts and fears when starting a relationship, but there will come a time when all of those will disappear without you noticing. Once you’re sure of where you stand, you can finally rest knowing that it’s real.
Note that this is different from appreciating other people. Not being attracted to anyone else means that you don’t want to entertain or date other people. Everyone else pales in comparison to the one who holds your heart. That’s because now you want one person, and one person only. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t look at someone else and appreciate that they’re attractive. [Read: 25 signs he really love you even if he doesn’t say it out loud]
We’re talking about plans, not fantasies. Imagining your wedding doesn’t count. Planning how you’ll move in together doesn’t count either. We’re talking about including a person you love in your plans for the future. Do you see them with you in five years? Yes or no? Do you want them to stay with you for a long time? Yes or no? No daydreams. No fantasies. Just facts. [Read: 9 relationship stages all couples go through in love]
Love comes at you out of nowhere, but you’ll soon realize that there were more than enough signs that it was coming your way. It could be the moment you saw your partner’s smile, or the way you felt when they first held your hand. And no, those weren’t signs that you’d fallen in love. Those were the signs that led you to fall in love.
When you’re falling in love, you want to be their biggest cheerleader. You want to push them to be the best they can be and you celebrate their successes. Similarly, you’re there by their side when things don’t go quite according to plan. Their success makes you happy, but remember to focus on yourself too! [Read: How to make your partner better: Is it something that can be done?]
Just spending time together is enough. You don’t have to be doing something spectacularly exciting; it can be as simple as watching a movie at home or going for a walk. The fact is that you’re together and being around them makes you happy. Is love real? In this case, yes!
That doesn’t mean you’re making grand plans quite yet but it does mean that you want to share the things in your life with them. You want them to meet your friends, maybe soon they’ll meet your family (if they haven’t already), and you want to share the small details with them. [Read: 7 Clear signs it’s the right time to meet the parents]
We all make small sacrifices for our partners, and as long as it doesn’t meant that you’re doing it constantly, it’s a normal thing to do when you’re in love. Just like before, we mentioned putting them first, you don’t mind that you make small sacrifices, because it’s for their greater good.
Do you just feel more grounded and calm when they’re around? You’re in love! Again, you don’t have to be doing anything special, you’re just there together and it makes you feel like you have everything you need or want in that moment.
[Read: Lust vs love: 10 Signs you’re feeling lust and not love]
If you think that you’re finally falling for the person you like, these signs may be the only thing left to help you confirm whether it’s true or not. If it hasn’t happened yet, rest assured: with these signs, you’ll know it when it comes.
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