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Old 09-28-2004, 07:58 PM   #1
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speedy415 HB User
If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

I am having a serious problem. I have tried to figure this out on my own but I need help... Please give me any advice you can!!!
I have been dating someone for about 7 months now. He has told me he loves me and I know he does, and our relationship is great. The only problem is that I don't know how I feel for him. Actually that's not true, I know how I feel, but I don't know how to classify it. This has been gnawing at my mind for months, he understands that I'm not going to say "I love you" back when he says it and is fine with that, or so he says. I'm sure it bothers him in some way. I know it bothers me though. It shouldn't really be important to "classify" my feelings but I want to at least be able to say to myself - if not for my sake then at least for his, ok well I don't love him, or hey yes I do. But I can't even say that! I am so scared that I am talking myself into or out of love that I don't even know what to do. Honestly I have never loved someone in the boyfriend way. I haven't dated around a whole lot (I am 24 by the way) and only know how I feel when I love someone in a family way or like my best friends. Doesn't romantic love feel different?? My boyfriend once let me read the letter he wrote to himself when he realized he loved me, and wanted to talk it out with himself and be sure he was right. When I read that letter, I can say pretty much all those same things about him - how well we get along, and understand each other, and everything...there isn't anyone I have ever felt the same about. If I take all these little things that attract me to him and add them up along with the feelings I have that I don't know how to classify but that I know are strong, does that equal love?
Everyone always says that you'll just know when you're in love. I just don't know - does it really just hit you in the face one day?? Everyone says you'll just know when you have an orgasm too, and that was true - I thought maybe I had until I really did. Is this going to be the same way? I'll think I might be in love until I really am? Or could I really be in love with him in some way? It seems like there are so many different types of love. So I'm sure I love him in at least the way I love my best friends because I consider him one of them. But I feel more for him too...is that extra the romantic side? In any case, I am so frustrated with myself, because not only do I not know if I love him, but I can't even say for sure that I don't!
Can anyone explain to me how you know when you're in love? I mean, I actually miss him when I don't see him for a while, and I rarely miss people. I love to be with him, even if we are just sitting there flipping through the channels for hours. Something about being with him makes me so comfortable. I have told him so many things about me that no one else know, and never felt weird about it. We once "broke up" for a few days, his decision, and when that happened I felt so lost, I swore he must have broken my heart. It was like a book - I couldn't concentrate at work, I didn't want to eat, it was all I could think about literally for like 2 days. I never expected to feel that way - it was early on in the relationship and I still didn't know how I felt exactly, but when that happened I thought that maybe I really did love him, because the feelings I was having were so strong. The few other times I have broken up with people or they broke up with me, I didn't feel anything like that at all. I can get over things easily, or rationalize my feelings. That didn't happen then. I even wanted to try and get him back, and that is very uncharacteristic of me...I tend to try and be a hard-a** all the time, even thought I know I shouldn't. Admittedly I don't say "I love you" very often at all, even to my family...not that that's right but I wonder if I just have some problem with that and that is why I am trying to talk myself out of this or why I might be holding back.
I just don't know what to do. I'm tired of "giving it time" - it's been 7 months! I should have an idea of what my feelings mean. I feel like I have an emotional IQ of about 12. I'm not good with feelings. Or expressing them. That's bad, and I am trying to get past that. So this is just driving me nuts. I can't give it any more time. A person should know whether or not they love someone else - if I am confused by my own feelings, how can I expect anyone else to understand them???
Someone please give me some advice or something! ANything!!

(sorry this was so long, by the way...I got on a roll...and it probably could have been longer! ha)

 
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Old 09-29-2004, 05:53 AM   #2
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eightball61 HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

It took me a long time to say "I love you" to my girlfriend. You want it to be right and meant. You never had a serious boyfriend before and now you have the right guy. You have all the emotions of love but you have a hardtime trying to express it.

I am sensing you are like this not because you are afraid of the word but you are afraid that you may get hurt. Was thier anytime in the past you seen someone get hurt over the word and now affect you?

I could be wrong about the whole thing but to me it makes sense. You have happiness right in front of you but this is bothereing the hell out of you. You dont want to say it just for the sake of making someone else feel good. "I love you" should only be used to make you feel good so only say it when you are ready.

 
Old 09-29-2004, 07:19 AM   #3
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MrOwl HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

To me love is selflessness. That is selflessly devoting yourself to another for their good with no thought of getting anything in return. With that definition of love, I am very careful to whom I say it.

You know that you are in love when you can, in total honesty, said that to the other person.

I think you are being wise in holding off. When you are ready to take that emotional plunge, and self-commitment, go for it, and never look back.

It would be good to discuss your definition of love with the other person, over a period of time, before you say, "I love you." You want that person to know what you mean when you say it. If they do not have a similar definition, then you are headed for major hurts down the line.

 
Old 09-29-2004, 02:30 PM   #4
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SaraE10 HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

I'm going to make a strange suggestion here, but it the only thing that has helped me in determining the depth of my feelings for someone. There are a select few really good love songs that I get all choked up listening to. When I can relate the way I feel about a person to one of those songs (i.e. think about them when I hear it, relate what the singer is saying to how I feel...), then I know it's love. Who knows... there is no definite way of knowing or of defining a feeling. This is just my "method". I'm a very romantic person, and I tend to lose myself in love sometimes. Oh, and I do have this one song... the ultimate test. It's going to be my wedding song. I keep it a secret from everyone (just for the sake of saying it's MINE). Once I find the guy who I can relate that song to... that's the one I am going to marry!!
Anyway, that's just my silly little idea. It does sound like you love him, because you describe a lot of the same feelings I get when I am in love. By the way, I don't believe you can only love one person. I have loved before and loved again. So don't feel like it's all or nothing. Stop trying to analyze it so much and just go with it! Chances are you have a beautiful thing and you don't even know it!!

 
Old 09-29-2004, 02:33 PM   #5
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eightball61 HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaraE10
I'm going to make a strange suggestion here, but it the only thing that has helped me in determining the depth of my feelings for someone. There are a select few really good love songs that I get all choked up listening to. When I can relate the way I feel about a person to one of those songs (i.e. think about them when I hear it, relate what the singer is saying to how I feel...), then I know it's love. Who knows... there is no definite way of knowing or of defining a feeling. This is just my "method". I'm a very romantic person, and I tend to lose myself in love sometimes. Oh, and I do have this one song... the ultimate test. It's going to be my wedding song. I keep it a secret from everyone (just for the sake of saying it's MINE). Once I find the guy who I can relate that song to... that's the one I am going to marry!!
Anyway, that's just my silly little idea. It does sound like you love him, because you describe a lot of the same feelings I get when I am in love. By the way, I don't believe you can only love one person. I have loved before and loved again. So don't feel like it's all or nothing. Stop trying to analyze it so much and just go with it! Chances are you have a beautiful thing and you don't even know it!!
Sara,
I like your way of determine love. I dont think it wierd at all. what you just proved is that we all have different ways to figure out if we are in love or not. We may think we are in love but the only way to tell if the person really can make you melt and you have to determine that in various ways. You found your way and works well for you. It it great advice to to give for the poster to try.

 
Old 09-30-2004, 08:02 PM   #6
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speedy415 HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

Thanks for these replies, even just writing it out and then hearing other people's opinions kind of put it all into perspective. I think I might have been thinking too hard about the whole thing - that's my problem, I'm afraid I'll say it and then realize I don't mean it... To reply, I don't really think there was ever a time I saw someone hurt over this so I don't think that's why I'm having a hard time...I am more afraid I would hurt him in some way, I don't know. But there was a really good point made about finding out if you love people in your own way. I didn't even realize that, you really do have to figure out your own tell-tale signs....hm. This has given me more to think about and also eased my mind
Thanks!

 
Old 09-30-2004, 09:07 PM   #7
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franstranges HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

I think when it finally comes over you, you willknow what love is. It is a form of the ultimate best friend, (as one way to look at it). DONT say 'I love you" if your not ready, but you can tell him you care for him.
I hope you find exactly the works to dsecribe yoru feelings, maybeits jsut budding love. Give it time.
Good luck
francesca

 
Old 09-30-2004, 09:39 PM   #8
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Ninispjc HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy415
Thanks for these replies, even just writing it out and then hearing other people's opinions kind of put it all into perspective. I think I might have been thinking too hard about the whole thing - that's my problem, I'm afraid I'll say it and then realize I don't mean it... To reply, I don't really think there was ever a time I saw someone hurt over this so I don't think that's why I'm having a hard time...I am more afraid I would hurt him in some way, I don't know. But there was a really good point made about finding out if you love people in your own way. I didn't even realize that, you really do have to figure out your own tell-tale signs....hm. This has given me more to think about and also eased my mind
Thanks!
I may be being a bit presumptuous, but it sort of sounds to me like your difficulty is not really how you feel about this particular guy, but that you are generally disconnected from your emotions. You seem like you have worked overtime trying not to feel anything much for anyone. Perhaps you should get to the bottom of why you've been doing that before you bring someone else into the mix.

 
Old 10-01-2004, 06:23 AM   #9
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: ma
Posts: 9,639
eightball61 HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy415
I'm afraid I'll say it and then realize I don't mean it...

Thats why you dont say it until you are ready too..

 
Old 10-06-2004, 08:10 PM   #10
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: ct
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jwass HB User
Re: If I don't know how I feel, who does?? HELP!

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedy415
I am having a serious problem. I have tried to figure this out on my own but I need help... Please give me any advice you can!!!
I have been dating someone for about 7 months now. He has told me he loves me and I know he does, and our relationship is great. The only problem is that I don't know how I feel for him. Actually that's not true, I know how I feel, but I don't know how to classify it. This has been gnawing at my mind for months, he understands that I'm not going to say "I love you" back when he says it and is fine with that, or so he says. I'm sure it bothers him in some way. I know it bothers me though. It shouldn't really be important to "classify" my feelings but I want to at least be able to say to myself - if not for my sake then at least for his, ok well I don't love him, or hey yes I do. But I can't even say that! I am so scared that I am talking myself into or out of love that I don't even know what to do. Honestly I have never loved someone in the boyfriend way. I haven't dated around a whole lot (I am 24 by the way) and only know how I feel when I love someone in a family way or like my best friends. Doesn't romantic love feel different?? My boyfriend once let me read the letter he wrote to himself when he realized he loved me, and wanted to talk it out with himself and be sure he was right. When I read that letter, I can say pretty much all those same things about him - how well we get along, and understand each other, and everything...there isn't anyone I have ever felt the same about. If I take all these little things that attract me to him and add them up along with the feelings I have that I don't know how to classify but that I know are strong, does that equal love?
Everyone always says that you'll just know when you're in love. I just don't know - does it really just hit you in the face one day?? Everyone says you'll just know when you have an orgasm too, and that was true - I thought maybe I had until I really did. Is this going to be the same way? I'll think I might be in love until I really am? Or could I really be in love with him in some way? It seems like there are so many different types of love. So I'm sure I love him in at least the way I love my best friends because I consider him one of them. But I feel more for him too...is that extra the romantic side? In any case, I am so frustrated with myself, because not only do I not know if I love him, but I can't even say for sure that I don't!
Can anyone explain to me how you know when you're in love? I mean, I actually miss him when I don't see him for a while, and I rarely miss people. I love to be with him, even if we are just sitting there flipping through the channels for hours. Something about being with him makes me so comfortable. I have told him so many things about me that no one else know, and never felt weird about it. We once "broke up" for a few days, his decision, and when that happened I felt so lost, I swore he must have broken my heart. It was like a book - I couldn't concentrate at work, I didn't want to eat, it was all I could think about literally for like 2 days. I never expected to feel that way - it was early on in the relationship and I still didn't know how I felt exactly, but when that happened I thought that maybe I really did love him, because the feelings I was having were so strong. The few other times I have broken up with people or they broke up with me, I didn't feel anything like that at all. I can get over things easily, or rationalize my feelings. That didn't happen then. I even wanted to try and get him back, and that is very uncharacteristic of me...I tend to try and be a hard-a** all the time, even thought I know I shouldn't. Admittedly I don't say "I love you" very often at all, even to my family...not that that's right but I wonder if I just have some problem with that and that is why I am trying to talk myself out of this or why I might be holding back.
I just don't know what to do. I'm tired of "giving it time" - it's been 7 months! I should have an idea of what my feelings mean. I feel like I have an emotional IQ of about 12. I'm not good with feelings. Or expressing them. That's bad, and I am trying to get past that. So this is just driving me nuts. I can't give it any more time. A person should know whether or not they love someone else - if I am confused by my own feelings, how can I expect anyone else to understand them???
Someone please give me some advice or something! ANything!!

(sorry this was so long, by the way...I got on a roll...and it probably could have been longer! ha)
gosh- you are speaking my language! i just said today to a friend, "how can i expect him to know how i feel if i don't know myself!" In my case, there may be a genuine fear of getting hurt, or even worse...hurting him. i also fear that i still (eventhough i am in an incredibly loving and committed relationship-i'm 32) may be looking over my shoulder for someone or something that may be more "right". i contemplate the reasons i do this and still cannot make total sense of it. i do know that nothing is bigger than LOVE. just b/c you cannot say it, if you "feel" it, that's everything. getting to a point where you can say it may be a process for you. that's o.k. However, being able to love someone else and feel comfortable with that "choice", is something that has to come from a place of security and love for yourself. i am just realizing now how little i accept myself at times and it makes me question my feelings, my choices and the people who love me the most. it can be really destructive sometimes

take some time alone don't judge what you're going through. it only complicates things. let yourself be with your confusion and you will connect with your emotions easier then. it's a process. it's not easy, but sometimes you have to feel completely lost and helpless before you find peace and clarity.

please feel free to post any more thoughts on this subject. you're not alone!

 
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