Love hurts in every possible way: if we have it, if we don’t have it, if we lose it, if we find it…
When someone falls in love, they become subject to a mirage of illusions in which the real ME is reflected. Self-esteem is at the mercy of another, your self-confidence becomes someone else’s property, your self-image and worth depends on the other person. Your entire inner life is theirs.
This can function perfectly and mature until a relationship full of friendship, love and intimacy is established. But in order to achieve this, we have to find the right person, and when I say “right” I mean the right person to consolidate our true identity.
Relationships are based on a give and take, this way everything I receive will be because the other person has first received this same thing from me. So, we become mirrors that reflect each other: either the emptiness and void of one or the whole universe of another.
The need for a partner
Humans are social beings by nature. They have evolved and adapted to live in the company of others. Nevertheless, that company is safer if it involves a sufficient amount for the brain to control: a small group of acquaintances. The ideal number is therefore two, in order to evolve from here, form a family with the individuals you decide. For this reason, it is catastrophic for a brain to not have a partner or not ever have had one. The brain interprets and anticipates its destruction and the possibility of not extending its genes to new generations. This can be stressful to the point of making you fall into a deep depression. Which is ironic, because we won’t find a partner that way either.
On the other hand, if we have a partner, we want this person to bring out the best in us. And we don’t realize that the other person can only bring out what we show them of ourselves. This also hurts us. We want them to be perfect, for everything to turn out okay, to avoid any and all mistakes. But the truth is that what hurts us the most is when we see the worst of ourselves in that person. The things we don’t accept of our innermost selves or what we might really like to be and simply don’t have the courage to become. But the other person does see this, because they see it in our reflection (remember that we’re a mirror).
If we lose that love that has made us so happy, well of course it’s going to hurt. It hurts to the point that we think we might die of love. We need another mirror immediately, but we panic at the thought of finding one we don’t like. Besides, we were accustomed to the other one, and we knew what we had. Our self-esteem depended on that mirror. My self-image was the other person. My confidence and security was knowing that he was there. But none of that is true, it’s an illusion that the other mirror made us believe. Which lets us fulfill ourselves and grow in a marvelous way. But until this moment of discovery and enlightenment arrives, it hurts.
Love hurts when we find it, because we start to lose other reflections that we had known until that moment. We love our new mirror and start to believe that we can’t live without it, but it hurts. It hurts our ego, hurts our inner self, and hurts for the whole world to lose a reflection like mine.
What’s the solution? We have to grow within in such a way that we don’t need another mirror to move about in the world. Our self-esteem must be strong and we must believe in ourselves, independently from any other reflection. Being sure that what we show the outside world are the best parts of ourselves, what we like best, what makes us feel proud to be who we are. Thus, we’ll manage to reflect onto others the most beautiful parts of our being, in such a way that we’ll receive the same back, but even grander due to all of the marvelous qualities the other person possesses.