Falling in love is a trembling, subtle feeling. And contrary to preconceptions, it’s also characteristic of a mature relationship. These 8 signs can help you determine if you’re in love.
The glow in our eyes, the butterflies in our stomachs, the weakness in our knees. We feel falling in love on a bodily level, but we also just know that this is it. However, there are other signs associated with this state – behavioural signs. They have been described by anthropologists, neuroscientists Helen Fisher from Rutgers University in the USA and Anik Debro from the University of Lausanne in Switzerland.
They also showed that not all signs of falling in love (which is different from love: one can love but no longer be in love) are instinct-related. They include empathy and sincerity, as well as sexual attraction or the desire to be exclusive to one’s partner.
Eight signs describe this condition in couples at the beginning of a relationship – but it can also be observed in those whose relationships continue.
“These latter are fewer than the ‘freshly in love’ and these characteristics are not as pronounced,” notes psychoanalyst Anne-Marie Benoit. – However, they consider themselves to be in love and care about maintaining the relationship”.
Finding out how inherent these characteristics are in your relationship will help you draw your own conclusions about them.
1. YOU WANT TO BE GENUINE
It’s more important for you to present yourself in a genuine way than in the best way. You want to talk about what’s important to you and tell the truth about yourself – this establishes a connection with the other person, with the innermost part of their personality. The stronger the desire for intimacy, the more obvious the desire to be open.
You see a relationship as a living organism that feeds on sincerity. And so for you, the need for intimacy is stronger than the desire to seduce – because you want to continue the relationship with this person and not with someone else. When you don’t try to embellish yourself in your interactions with the other, it reinforces the feeling of being chosen and loved for who you really are.
2. YOU CAN’T TAKE YOUR EYES OFF OF HIM OR HER
You notice those who are brighter than your chosen one, but you look at them with the gaze of an uninterested observer. You don’t care much about the others, your partner is who matters.
When we start paying attention to potential sexual partners, this, according to research, indicates a decrease in affective attachment and life satisfaction in the couple.
You are aware of his flaws, you don’t deny them, but your gaze is drawn to his positive traits
Researchers also note that falling in love lasts longer in those who focus on their partner: it’s as if there’s something so special about him that his presence awakens desire and feelings of falling in love… which sleeps in the company of others.
3. AFTER SEX YOU ARE IN A LIGHT TRANCE
The reason is the pleasure you derive from dating, but not only. As studies have shown, it’s about the love and passion that lovers feel during sex, not just about sex per se.
Love brings satisfaction, both on an individual level and in a relationship. Of course, a sexual relationship can be highly satisfying, but it does not guarantee falling in love. But if you are in love, sex brings pleasure because it becomes the place where we feel the intimacy shared with the other most strongly.
4. YOU DO EVERYTHING YOU CAN TO MAKE HIS LIFE BETTER
The well-being of the one we love is very important to us, because it is directly linked to our own. His or her material and spiritual well-being and all the things that give him or her joy and pleasure become objects of our attention and concern. We know that if the partner is disappointed and frustrated, the relationship will no longer be satisfying.
A constant focus on the well-being of the other is one indicator that you are in love. When it fades, it does not mean that love has passed, but it does indicate that the feeling of being in love has dulled.
5. YOU REALLY APPRECIATE HIS COMPANY
He makes you laugh, charms you, intrigues you, touches you. It doesn’t matter what he does, what matters is that he is him. His presence is a source of your pleasure. You enjoy spending time with him. His charm is irresistible to you. Just him and no one else! Some alliances surprise those around you, and some even the participants themselves, because they overturn all social, physical and cultural assumptions about who fits who.
But what matters is the feelings you have in the presence of your partner. And if the relationship goes on, those feelings go on too, that means you are in love.
6. YOU ARE EMPATIC
The state of his soul is no secret to you. You can read his mood by his facial expression, guess at the change in his voice timbre. Craving for connection is part of falling in love, and it establishes a direct line of communication with the other. It’s easy for you to find common ground with him, to adapt to his behaviour. Misunderstandings are rare. Conflicts in couples only start when this empathy is diminished – or if there wasn’t any.
7. YOU FOCUS ON HIS POSITIVE QUALITIES
You are aware of his flaws and limitations, you don’t deny them, but your gaze is drawn to his positive traits. His talents, mental qualities, skills often arouse your admiration. You continue to admire them, even in his absence, or when the situation does not give cause to demonstrate them.
When you are reminded of your partner some events or things, you feel moved and excited. Couples in which two keep noticing the best in each other, keep the crush longer, and their sense of partnership is stronger and stronger.
8. YOU NOTICE A POSSESSIVE FEELING IN YOURSELF
At the core of this feeling is a rejection of interest in other potential partners. Incidentally, the cause of most conflicts in couples is jealousy and infidelity. Much less disputes occur over financial status.
But sexual exclusivity is not the only important thing for falling in love. Equally important is the affective exclusivity, the partner’s complete uniqueness in intimacy, trust and sincerity. Over time the possessive feeling may subside, but it is always lurking in the heart of falling in love, that is what makes the partner exceptional and the only one.