Just a Little Love

As humans, we desire love and acceptance on a base level. Right from infancy, we
want to be loved. As children, we receive this love from our parents, and it is enough for
that period of our lives. However, as we get older and our circles get bigger, we begin to
desire love and acceptance from the other people in our lives. It\’s a tricky situation to
navigate because, on the one hand, we want this unconditional love and acceptance.
But on the other hand, we are wary of people because life teaches us to be that way.
When it comes to love and acceptance, I could write a book because it is an experience
that doesn\’t look the same in any two people. But as I have gotten older, two things
always stand out to me.
The first thing is this; you can't force people to love you. No matter how much you want
someone to be a part of your life, you can't force them. It\’s as simple as that. You might
think, \”Oh, I would never do that,\” but sometimes it\’s not as obvious. Sometimes it is in
subtle statements like, \”If you give us time, we\’ll be great together\”. Or in the ways we
insist on inserting ourselves into the person\’s life, inserting ourselves into their affairs
without remorse, etc. Sometimes it\’s even in the offhanded compliments we give,
\”You\’re my best friend; I don\’t know what I would do without you\”. Don\’t get me wrong,
there are relationships where these are appropriate, but have you ever noticed that the
person you speak to never responds in the same way? Or that they never reach out to
you or share personal experiences with you? I mean, you have been \”friends\’ for a
year, and you don\’t know the first thing about their life. Yet you are always with them
and consider them your best friend. Love is most beautiful when reciprocated. I have
often been in situations where people made me feel like I had to love them. And if I
failed to love said person, I had somehow failed as a person and deserved damnation
and hellfire. People should never feel like they have to love you; love should come
naturally. And if you have to strong-arm someone into loving you, you probably
shouldn\’t be there in the first place. Not everyone will love you back, but that\’s okay
because the world is full of people, and many will love you the way you are.
The second thing is that the love you experience will differ for every relationship you
have. And the sooner you realize that, the better. So many people are looking for the
love they experienced with their parents in their significant others. They are looking for
the expression of love they experienced during their childhood to be present in their
friendships and romantic relationships. Unfortunately, love doesn\’t work that way. Love
is multi-faceted, and human beings are different, which is why we learn about love
languages. Just because you grew up experiencing love as the presence of gifts doesn\’t
mean the absence of it is an absence of love. People will love us in different ways, and
that is not a bad thing.
To experience human love fully, we need to open our minds and offer acceptance the
same way we want to be loved and accepted. We desire love, but I guess the question
we should ask ourselves is, how much love are we giving?

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