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How to love?

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Old 08-16-2006, 05:22 AM   #1
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el_9_el HB User
How to love?

I'm becoming completely and utterly frustrated with myself. My boyfriend is one of the best people I've ever met. I like him in every way and have no complaints of significance. He is the first guy that I've dated that I haven't ruled out a future with right from the start. In every other relationship I've been in, I've KNOWN I don't want to be with the person for good.

My problem is that he has said he loves me and I have not been able to say it back. I feel so sad that he might feel rejected by that. The problem is though, that I think I could be in love with him, but every time I go to say it, it gets stuck. Actually, any time I go to say ANYTHING important or about my feelings, I freeze up and say nothing at all. The poor guy doesn't know how much I care for him. I wish I could tell him that I find him attractive, interesting and such an honest, decent person.

It's not just verbally that I freeze up though. It's also showing affection. I'm just so unable to instigate anything. I'm quite receptive to his advances, but I'd love to be able to grab HIS hand, or be the one to kiss HIM when I want to. I think I'm incredibly scared of smothering him - what if I kiss him when he doesn't feel like it?

I don't want to be like this. I want to be able to show the love and affection I feel. Why can't I expose it? Why does it make me feel sick to express it? It must be so unrewarding to have me as a girlfriend. I am so sure that he'll tire of me and cheat on me to find some love. How can I change before he does that?

I come from a family that does not express love. I KNOW my parents love me even if they don't say it, because they do a lot for me and obviously care about how I feel. There is also zero physical affection in my family - we don't even kiss/hug when someone is going on a long holiday or when someone is sad and crying.

I'm sure growing up in this family has influenced the way I am. Am I destined to be an outwardly cold and lonely person forever?

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Old 08-16-2006, 08:01 AM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Lagos, Nigeria
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minijumbofly HB User
Re: How to love?

You are worrying far too much. This is more common than you might think. Many people have difficulties expressing themselves.

Some never become expressive and have no problem living with it through their lifes. Of course, their partners have to be understanding and be confident that the love is there while the verbal or physical evidence is lacking.

I grew up like you, without a single expression like " I love you" or "I miss you". No kisses and no hugs except for special occasions. And I had similar experiences in relationships like the one you are in now.

You can learn to be more expressive but it will take some practices. Kinda like a progressive excercise regime. Start with the basics and then work to the advance levels. But it can be done. I did it in a year or so.

If your BF is expressive, he would be an ideal practice partner to start. Don't get stressed if you do choke up while trying. He will appreciate the fact that you are trying and any accomplishemnts would be welcomed and rewarded.

Also, it's actually easier to start with the physical part before the verbal part. It was far easier for me to start giving hugs and pats than to finally say "I love you too" later on.

Besides, I really don't think there is such thing as "kissing him when he is not feeling like it". Heck, I could be mad as hell at my wife but I still want her to kiss me

Old 08-17-2006, 09:20 AM   #3
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Join Date: Mar 2006
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BetsyJean HB User
Re: How to love?

You mention that you "think" you love him, right? Don't worry right now about the actual "I Love You"!!

Try something like this and the rest will happen eventually if you are ever sure that you do love him...

I love the way you make me laugh!
I just love that shirt on you.
I love the way you make me feel so special.

See what I mean???!!!

Old 08-17-2006, 09:44 AM   #4
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: kent
Posts: 1,435
brook65 HB User
Re: How to love?

Hi, It sounds like you are just not a naturally tactile person. I also would say that this is probably due to your upbringing, where emotions, feelings etc were suppressed.

Were your parents older parents, I say this, as my parents are in their 70s and it is a generation thing I think, my dad has never hugged me or told me he loved me, but I know that he does.

Remember on a positive thought, actions always speak louder than words.

If you find it so difficult, have you thought about writing him a note, explaining how you feel, and explaining how you just find it difficult to express yourself, due to learning about supressing feelings from your parents.

On the other hand you may also have a genuine fear of rejection, and scared to approach him, for making a fool of yourself.

I would start by writing him a letter, see how he responds to that, and once you feel more confident and natural around him, things will probably change.

Best of luck

Last edited by brook65; 08-17-2006 at 09:44 AM.

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