The idea of falling in love is one that has been romanticized for years. For some it has turned into a goal in which they wish to achieve. Being happily in love gets some people excited, creating a sense of expectancy. While some people are patiently waiting for the day to experience this thing called love, there are others who find themselves filled with anxiety at the thought of it. Society talks about love like it is something everyone is supposed to look forward to. In movies, shows and books love is made to be this thing that everyone is happily seeking. The truth of the matter is, some of us are actually petrified at the thought of what love may bring. The very thought of love brings an exacerbated paranoia that perpetuates our very fear of it. There are of ton of reasons why someone may fear falling in love but I’ll highlight the few I think play a big part in it.
You’ve been hurt before…..
I know it’s cliché but let’s be honest, heart break is one of the worst things to experience. How do you explain hurt without any physical pain? Experiencing a horrendous heart break can deter anybody from wanting to give love a try again. We forget that falling in love is a risk. No matter how much a person may love you back. So to expect people to want to volunteer at the chance to be hurt again is not really fair. We have to learn to be patient with people as they heal from those wounds because everyone heals differently. Now this doesn’t mean stay broken and hurt forever. At some point you have to let go of that past pain. It is understandable though why this keeps people from wanting to try again.
You’re afraid of what you may find out about yourself…..
Love is one of those things that will have you acting all out of your character. I’m talking doing things that you swore you would never do. Sometimes people are afraid of what they may realize about themselves through love. The other side of this is that falling in love has a way of showing you things about yourself that you never realized were a problem. It has a tendency to dig up all of those insecurities you thought you had dealt with or didn’t even know you had. The idea of having to face all of the things you have tried to bury before has kept many people in fear about love. The key though is to embrace this process. One cannot grow without self-awareness and love will make you VERY aware of yourself. Self-awareness though is scary in itself and that is probably why people tend to fear both.
You get comfortable in the search…..
Sometimes in the search for a mate, we find ourselves becoming complacent in the search. We find every reason to discredit every person that enters into our lives because we know if they are indeed “the one,” then we are now leaving familiar territory. When you have been single for a long time, you become comfortable in the very thing you say you want to get out of. You get so used to searching that when the search is over you want to find a reason to keep searching. People fall in love with the search which makes them afraid to fall in love with the person. The other part of becoming comfortable with the search is that it keeps us from having to show ourselves approved. In meeting a good person we know we have to now put into place all the things we’ve been quote on quote “preparing for.” We have to show that we can actually apply all that we’ve learned in the time we’ve been searching. We know it’s not just enough to read every popular book on love and relationships but never put any of that knowledge into action. If we never allow ourselves to love though, we free ourselves from the pressure of having to show we have changed.
You don’t understand it…..
Due to the misconceptions society has placed on the subject, many people have a misunderstanding of what love is. History has shown us that people fear what they do not understand. People either equate love with a fairy tale or with tragedy. It can be both but love is deeper than either of those concepts. So many people are afraid of the complex enigmatic properties of love. It is so specific yet so vague. Although there are thousands of books on it there is no true manual. The idea that we just have to jump in and figure it out with the hopes of it working is scary for most. If you do not know what you are doing it makes the chances of failing higher, which ultimately is the root of the fear of love, failure.
What it all boils down to is the idea of love is a scary thing. Yes it is beautiful and has its great moments but you have to get over the initial fear to enjoy the fruits that it bears. Now listen, I am not making excuses for people who are simply using their fear as a crutch to keep from falling in love. I’m just trying to make all you hopeless romantics out there aware that there is a group of people who run from love. The biggest thing is to know these aren’t bad people. They have just been through things that makes love a little less exciting of a concept. The best thing to do is to just be patient with them and validate their feelings while showing them that love isn’t so bad after all.