How Do I Know What I’m Feeling?

Love and attachment
are two completely different emotions and situations. A lot of the time, the
attachment will play with your mind and make you think that you’re in love. So
how can we really determine what you are feeling? Perhaps you are reading this
article because you have met someone that gives you all the feelings of what
you regard as love, but you’re unsure of what has actually happened is you are
attached to them? If so, you are in the right place.

In this article, we
are going to pick apart the many differences between being in love and being
attached to someone, so you can figure out what it is that you are truly
feeling towards this person.

Attachment is
egocentric. Love is altruistic.


This is the first
point I have made, for a reason. It is probably the most important thing that
you need to understand the differences between attachment and love.

We get attached to
people because of the way that they make us feel when we are around them. Then,
when we continue to see them, we do it because we know that they make us feel
this way. They might make us feel a little less lonely, they might encourage
and support us. We need them there to top up our self-esteem, and because this
person is good at doing that for us, we get attached to them and mistake it for
love. When you are attached, you are thinking of yourself, and yourself only.

When you are in love, you think about the other person. Of course, it helps that when you are around them you feel great, but that’s not the reason you stick around. You love them, and you want to make them happy. You could say that being in love makes you put them as the top priority in your life, even over yourself.

Attachment makes you
feel distraught when you aren’t with that person. Love makes you miss the

Attachment makes you
feel alone and sad when you are not with the person you are attached too. This
is because they are the reason you feel great and they boost your confidence so
much when you are around them. When you are attached to someone, you can’t get
enough of them. You feel like you need to be around them all the time. You get
almost obsessed with being around this person. When you are away from them, you
might feel like your feelings towards them start to dwindle and disappear, so
you must see them keep it all alive.

This is when problems
will start to occur. For example, when you are attached you might start to put
this person over anyone, especially your friends and family. This can be
dangerous because attachment does not last forever and when it is no longer
there anymore, you might realize you aren’t left with anyone at your side.

Love makes you miss
the person when you are apart from them. However, it doesn’t all consume your
thoughts and feelings when you are not with them. When you truly are in love
with someone, it doesn’t matter if you are apart for a little while, because
the feeling still remains in your heart. There is no obsessive need to be with
them all day, every day. You can still appreciate them from afar.

This also means that when you are truly in love because you don’t feel the need to be with them at every waking moment, you can still spend time with your other loved ones because love just makes you a more fulfilled person than you were before, it is not all-consuming.

Attachment is a
surface-level connection. Love is deep and passionate.

When you are attached
to someone, as we have already said, you are attached to them because of how
they make you feel. You will never really connect with this person on a deeper
level because what you are feeling is a vain and selfish kind of emotion. You
also won’t feel the need to get to know them on a deeper level, because for
now, you are happy with how everything is between you. You are getting
complimented and supported, and that is all you need from the relationship.

Love is the complete
opposite of that. When you are in love, you feel so passionately for this
person. You want to know everything about them, what they love and hate, what
their childhood was like and what strange quirks they have. You soak up every
single thing you can about them because you want to know them on a deeper
level. You are creating an unbreakable connection with them, getting to know
them deeper better than you have with anyone else ever before.

Attachment is
controlling. Love encourages freedom.

When you are attached to someone, you might realize that you are using controlling behavior, so that you can spend the most amount of time with this person as possible. For example, you might discourage the person from spending time with their friends and family because you want them all to yourself. It might get to a more extreme level where you become jealous. This could mean that you start to manipulate the person into focusing on you and you only. This is really unhealthy behavior, and it shows that you are definitely not in love with them. You are trying to control someone, and you wouldn’t do this if you really cared about them and their feelings.

When you are in love,
of course, you want to spend as much time possible with the person that you
love, but you would never put your needs above them. You understand that what’s
going to make them happy is to keep spending time with their family and
friends, so you encourage them to do so. You would never tell them what to do
because you respect them and care about how they feel. You would never try to
manipulate them into spending time with you because then it isn’t real. You
don’t want to make your partner unhappy or ever put them in the situation that
they have to choose you over their own freedom. A strong and loving
relationship goes off the basis that two independent people come together and
love each other, without controlling each other.

The attachment will
never help either person to grow. Love encourages you both to grow.

Being attached to
someone means that they take up a lot of your time, and you, therefore, take up
a lot of theirs. It is a selfish situation, where you are always trying to make
yourself feel good by being around that person. You are not actually that
bothered with what they are doing, as long as they make you feel good. So, you
won’t encourage personal development and growth for them, and you are also
restricting it for yourself. You are not only stopping independent growth but
being in a situation of attachment does not allow the relationship between you
to grow, because it starts off on the wrong basis. You are not trying to feel
mutual love together, you are taking what you want and need from the
relationship. It is entirely selfish and consuming.

When you are in love
with someone, you will try to encourage them to be the best version of
themselves. They will also do the same for you. You will both be positively
affecting each other’s lives. You will provide support for your partner, and
they will do the same for you. You both care about what the other person wants,
so you will help them to achieve whatever it is. A loving relationship is where
you both stimulate each other to take on your lives in the most successful way
possible, knowing that you always have someone that will be there to help you,
support you and love you.

Attachment makes you a
more self-centered person. Love makes you a better version of yourself.

When you are attached
to someone, as I have already said, you are carrying on the relationship for
your own selfish reasons. So, if you are constantly doing something to benefit
yourself, you are only going to get increasingly self-centered. Also, because
what you are basing this relationship off is surface-level interaction that
keeps you feeling good, you will be becoming increasingly shallower. In the
future, you might, therefore, find it difficult to make and sustain a deeper
level of connection with people. Essentially, you are not growing in the world
of love, but you are in a world of selfishness.

When you are in love
with someone, all you want to do is become a better person. Not only will you
want to do this to impress them, but you will genuinely want to do it to make
their lives better because you are in it. The feeling of love makes you feel
unbelievably lucky, and therefore you will also show gratitude to not only the
person you are with but also the world as a whole. 

Through loving your
partner purely, you will become a better and more loving person. You will also
be able to notice the more negative qualities that you have, and you will try
to fix them so that they don’t destroy your relationship. By loving someone
else, you can look deeper within yourself and fix the parts of you that don’t
resonate with your kind heart.

Attachment never
compromises. Love is full of ‘meeting in the middle’.

People who are in an
attached relationship with each other, because of its self-centered foundations,
will never compromise. They will both stay stubborn. This relationship stems
from being selfish, so of course, they are never going to surrender to what
someone else wants. It also normal that one person in an attachment
relationship will always take control, so this might be yourself or it might be
your partner. However, normally one person does lead the way and the other is
submissive. Whichever way around it is for you, you need to realize that this
is a completely unhealthy relationship, and you should never feel coerced into
doing something that you don’t want to, or be coercing someone else to do
something they don’t want to.

In a loving
relationship, compromise is absolutely key. Unlike attachment, you are both
equals in this relationship and therefore you will want to make sure that you
both have equal say in your decisions. All couples that are in love make
compromises. These compromises could be anything as small as where to go for
dinner, to which house to buy. You will always want the other person to be
happy in a loving relationship, so you will swallow your pride, not be stubborn
and compromise with them.

Attachment tries to
change you. Love accepts you as you are.

When you are attached
to your partner, you will try to change them in ways that will make you
happier, because they are only there to make you happy. If they are doing
things that don’t make you fulfilled, you will try to manipulate the way they
act around you and you might even try to change their character and personality.
This is a completely unfair behavior to demand someone to change themselves
just so you can experience a better relationship with them.

When you are in love,
you completely accept your partner for who they are, and will never try to
change them. Of course, there might be things that you find slightly irritating
about them, but you will choose to accept it and move on. You are in love with
them, and you will understand that you can’t change them, because then they
will no longer be the person you fell for. When you fell in love with them, you
almost took a silent vow to love them for the whole of who they are, with both
the good bits, and the not so good parts.

Attachment is
difficult. Love is easy.

When you are attached
to someone, it might all feel a bit too difficult to be together. There might
be a lot of hard times that the two of you go through just to be together. It
might feel like the world is telling you that you shouldn’t be together, but
because they make you feel good, you persevere anyway.

Love, on the other
hand, is actually one of the easiest things in the world. When it is true love,
nothing can stop you from being together, and it will just fit into your life
perfectly. Of course, it might be hard knowing that you are falling for someone
and making yourself feel emotionally vulnerable, but love will fit right into
your life without making any problems.

Attachment comes and
goes. Love will stand the test of time.

Anyone can get
attached to someone else, at any time, as long as they make them feel good.
Therefore, the attachment can also disappear at any time. It’s a very transient
feeling and situation because there was nothing deep or real involved in it.
You can pretty much get attached to anyone because it is not about them, it is
about you. This means that there will probably not be a specific person that
you stick with long term, because other people might make you feel good in
different ways at different times in your life.

On the other hand,
love stands the test of time. Of course, it can all go wrong, and you might
break up, but the feeling of love will never disappear from you. You will
always hold onto the person and the feelings you had when you were with them.
You will also always have a candle that burns for that person. Love transcends
time, and so it will always stay with you in your heart.

Are you in love, or
are you attached?

Now we have had a look
at the many differences between love and attachment, we are going to take a
look at the signs of both types of relationships, which should help you better
understand which kind of relationship you are in.

Signs of attachment:

  • You feel lost without them there to boost your ego.
  • You get jealous easily when they are not around you.
  • You keep in contact with them all the time.
  • You rely on them to make you happy because otherwise, your self-esteem would below.
  • You manipulate them so that they spend less time with others, and more time with you.
  • You know that you are only with this person for selfish reasons, not because you love the person they are.
  • You can’t see yourself without them, but you don’t plan your future together.

Signs of love:

  • If you had to choose, you would most likely put their needs above your own.
  • You can’t wait to spend the rest of your life with this person.
  • You plan the future with them.
  • They are the first person that you depend on.
  • They make you unbelievably happy.
  • You can feel yourself becoming a better person when you are around them.
  • They give you a safe space to share your vulnerabilities with them.
  • You simply know that you love them.

What should do you if
you realize you are attached to someone?

Although attachment
and love might have seemed similar before, I hope that after reading this
article, you have been able to realize that they are in fact, entirely
different. Attachment is actually a negative relationship, that is normally
one-sided and emotionally unhealthy. So, if you have worked out that you are
attached to someone, here’s what you should do next:

1. You need to break
it off.

This might be a really
difficult thing to do because I’m sure that you think you would be lost without
this person. However, the only way you are going to be able to find true love
is by leaving this unhealthy attachment behind and moving forward. If it helps,
make sure you have a good support network around you that can help you after
the breakup, especially if you know your self-esteem will hit rock bottom
without this person in your life anymore.

2. You need to work on

The only reason people
get attached to someone is that they feel like they have a hole in their
self-esteem or exceptionally low confidence. Without this person there anymore
to lift you up and keep stroking your ego, you will probably feel very low. You
need to know that breaking off the relationship was the healthiest thing to do
for yourself. Now, it’s time to get to work.

I would recommend
thinking in-depth about why you have low self-confidence, and if it helps maybe
even going to see a therapist. This will not be an overnight process, and it’s
something you may need to work on for years even. However, when you have healed
yourself, only then are you ready to open yourself up to the wonderful world of

3. Open yourself up to
the prospect of real love.

Once you have healed
any trauma within you, and your self-esteem is back, you are ready to get back
into the world of real love, not attachment. Because this time, I’m hoping you
will be able to notice if you are getting attached to someone rather than
falling in love with them. People will be more attracted to you than ever
before, because being a confident and self-assured person, is sexy.


I hope this article
was able to help you figure out if you are feeling attached, or in love. The
only thing left to say is that I wish you the best of luck dealing with
everything, and the world of love will always be open for you, you just need to
know what you’re looking for.

Did this article help
you at all? If it did and you liked what you read, please let us know in the comments.
We would love to hear from you.

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