Have you ever dated someone who never wants to go out, they think binge watching shows or playing video games in front of you is a date? Or what about that sweet guy who worships you so hard you just wish he had a hobby?
Neither is fun or conducive to a healthy long-lasting connection. I’ve known both extremes, and they just weren’t right for me. Maybe it’s because I crave adventure. My husband said his dad once warned him, “Never let a woman get bored with you.” When I heard this, it calmed some of my own fears that “Men always want what they can’t have.”
In truth, not everyone loves at the same level. Some people want a simple relationship where everything is on the surface, and others like things to be more intense. How we love is just as important as who we love. So, what are the different ways people love others, and how does it affect relationship success?
Simple love is less intense. It’s not as heartbreaking or dramatic. It’s perfect for people who just want someone to have their back. A lot of younger guys prefer this, and honestly, it’s better for women who are the typical feminine types who just need small gestures like a box of chocolates or flowers every once in a while.
Just having someone to go grab a bagel with is enough for this kind of lover. They don’t fight much and know when to apologize, mainly because they don’t act out often, so apologies are needed less frequently.
PROS: Less drama, more honesty.
CONS: Sometimes superficial, can get boring.
How we love is just as important as who we love.
Like simple love, comfortable couples enjoy letting it all hang out. They don't hide from each other. They leave the door open when they go to the bathroom, don’t care much about appearances, and aren’t opposed to just grabbing fast food for Valentine’s Day.
These couples don't need to impress each other, but sometimes like to have bigger gestures to strengthen bonds. On special occasions they might do something special, but it’s never expected.
PROS: You are each other's best friend, no jealousy.
CONS: Big life changes can disrupt your harmony.
Intense/passionate lovers are those annoying people who live for each other. They’re always making out, holding hands, or feeding each other in restaurants. They have a deep bond formed in complex desires and goals. These people are very conscious of everything they go through together.
They like big displays of affection and won’t hold back. When you hear of love at first sight, it’s usually between people with intense/passionate desires. These are the people who write songs for each other, and don’t handle separation as well as simple or comfortable lovers.
PROS: Very romantic, never boring.
CONS: Can be codependent and possessive.
When you hear of love at first sight, it’s usually between people with intense/passionate desires.
The ultimate adults. These couples are the "grown-ups" even around grown-ups. They're more analytical but aren't strangers to going out for a night on the town dressed to the nines. They’re serious about themselves, their life, and their relationship.
These couples have goals, and the drive to meet them. Their love manifests through decisions to buy a car together, buy a house, start a family business, and so on. Their dates are an event that is often planned, but memorable.
PROS: Clear intentions, usually avoid divorce.
CONS: Can be overbearing or self-righteous.
Finding the Right Fit
Some relationships mix and match. Opposites attract, but our approach to love matters more than we think. My first marriage failed mainly because I married a man who just wanted to be comfortable. He had very little adventure in him. It was never going to work and that was hard to accept. I felt like he didn’t love on the same level that I did because his idea of love was watching movies together.
I’m an active person. I give and need passion and intensity. Without that, my relationships feel empty. Finding a man who wants to go out and do things, hike new trails, and play music with me, while also pulling out some romantic tricks along the way is a must.
Modernity has made it as if love is all or nothing, while simultaneously declaring that romance is dead. I don’t know how that’s supposed to work, but in truth, compatibility isn't about filling quotas, or counting down the days until you finally realize you’re in love, it’s a lifestyle.
How you love determines the success of your romance. Once you realize what you need, you can find it more easily.
Once you realize how you love and what you need, you can find it more easily.
I really didn’t believe that a man like my husband (my second husband, the man I call my REAL husband) could possibly exist. Everyone told me to lower my expectations and that guys just didn’t care about anything anymore. It’s not like I was expecting some storybook romance, I just wanted someone to have fun with, and sitting on a couch isn’t fun for me.
Once I openly admitted this, it was easy. It turns out, there are a lot of men out there who like to open doors for women or take them out and show them off; men who are happy to embark on adventures and be spontaneous. Unfortunately, modern feminism is so confusing, most men don’t know if they should even try.
I didn’t hold back with my husband. We joked around about the state of love and society a lot. Having a good sense of humor while getting to know each other brought us closer and gave him the courage to pull out all the stops.
None of the different types of romantic love are good or bad, per se. It all depends on how we connect to others. There is nothing wrong with comfortable love or serious love, or any type of romantic involvement between adults seeking affection, so long as it doesn’t become unhealthy.
Sure, an intense lover is far less likely to stay with a comfortable one, just on the basis that how they express love is so different that they will often feel neglected or misunderstood, but many couples display different aspects of multiple forms of love and can find a balance as they connect and form deeper bonds. The main point is that we must be conscious of our needs in order to find the person who fulfills them. Love is complicated, but it’s not impossible.
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