False Love: How To Know When Love Isn’t True Love

· February 19, 2018

There are many things that look like love, but are anything but. They are usually friendships that get very close and often last a very long time, but in deep down there is no real affection, just limitations and problems that keep the relationship going. Sadly, false love is all too common in today’s world.

Genuine love is characterized by two people wanting to grow together. It implies generosity and freedom. It is more real the more it encourages the individuality of those involved. This includes all forms of love: parent-child, a couple etc.

“There is no disguise that can hide true love for long time, or fake it where there is none.”

-François de la Rochefoucauld-

Sometimes true affection is confused with other things that seem to be love but aren’t. These relationships usually involve very intense feelings.

They are experienced from heart, but often there is no respect or real appreciation of the other person. They are born out of selfish desires or needs and are kept going because they do have some benefits. Here are some of them:

False love and dependency

False love: over-protection

Over-protection is one of those things that looks like love, but isn’t, however much the other person seems to care. It is a type of behavior that occurs mostly between parents and children. However, it is also common in couples, among friends and in other types of relationships.

Over-protection is an excessive desire to try to keep anything from happening to someone we consider vulnerable or defenseless. When we love someone, of course we want only the best for them.

However, someone who is overly protective sees danger where there is none. Or if it does exist, they exaggerate their seriousness. Overprotective people often ignore the fact that we learn a lot from bad experiences.

What prevails in a relationship like this is not affection, but anguish. Those who overprotect others project their own fears onto that person.

And they aren’t usually able to keep bad things from happening to their loved one. Quite the opposite, in fact. They end up overwhelming the other person with anxiety and preventing them from growing up.

False love: controlling loved ones

Having an excessive desire to control other people resembles over-protection somewhat, but it isn’t the same. In this case the person is actually trying to belittle the other person.

Ultimately, what they really want is for the “loved one” to stop trusting themselves and, as a result, become dependent.

Girl leaving a boy

This behavior is portrayed as  love, but it isn’t that at all. At times they pile burdens on the other person with burdens and then other times they take care of them.

They also do whatever they can to keep the other person from going through bad things. However, this protection is not free. They pay for it by giving up their autonomy and freedom.

Their real intention is to get you completely dependent on them. From the outside, it can give the impression that the person is trying to make you happy, but really he’s keeping you from living your own life.

They manipulate you so you’ll never leave them. This is false love. It’s just selfish control.

False love with chains

Dependence and false love

Control on the outside and dependence on the inside — these are the characteristics of relationships of false love. It’s a rather peculiar relationship, because one person puts all their needs and frustrations onto the other.

In doing this he is forcing the other person to be responsible for his happiness. The result is a kind of surrogate father or mother, always there to satisfy their every wish.

They end up desperately needing this “tutor” they have found. After all, they’re like a shield against life’s problems. They avoid facing their own problems and decisions and risk of failing.

The dependent person may feel that he deeply loves the other person, but the reality is that it is a relationship of mutual exploitation.

All these forms of false love are harmful: they conceal situations that should be dealt with in other ways. They can look like love, but actually have more to do with some kind of neurosis. And they almost never end well.

They cause pain and impede mutual growth. Unfortunately, they also tend to be very strong, which ends up hurting the people involved much more than a normal relationship.