“Be committed but not attached. But most importantly know the difference.” ~ Anonymous
There is a huge difference between falling/being in love and becoming/being attached.
Let me elaborate.
Remember that blanket or stuffed animal you were attached to when you were a kid (or for some of us till a later stage – I still have a picture of myself when I was around 12 years old cuddling my favorite teddy bear!) and how you felt when you were holding it? Whether it was happiness, security, silliness, or joy, you loved the feeling so much to the point you just wanted to hold the object over and over again. You got attached to that feeling.
Our emotional attachment to human beings resembles our childhood attachment to objects like these. We become attached to people because we like how we experience that particular feeling when we are around them, and that “liking” turns into different levels of attachment until it becomes a “need”.
That is a dangerous stage!
I am not talking here about kids’ needs for their parents, family needs to belong and connect, elderly needs to be taken care of, or human being needs to have air, water, shelter and basic requirements. The dangerous need I am referring to here is emotional; the kind that you have for someone to make you feel complete and wanted. It is the needy attachment to that person whom without, you feel your life is shattered and you cannot function on all levels without them.
That is the need that I loathe, and am mostly terrified of.
Needy attachment is not love, it is the absolute opposite. It is a selfish feeling because your main focus in the relationship would be how you want your partner to make you feel, and to constantly feed that.
While love is the force that moves through us all, I think More of it. Love is selfless. Love is pure. Love is giving. That’s why when two people are giving equally, the chances are higher that this love will blossom into a healthy relationship. You do not need that person or the feeling you are given to feel complete. In love, both of you are complete, but you complement each other, and there is a big difference between the two! Both of you want to experience particular feelings with that particular person, but you are not in need for that. You respect and accept one another as you are without the need to change yourselves, but both of you still aim to grow, learn, and adjust everyday to make this relationship work.
I want to admit that I spent most of my life confused between needy attachment and love. So many times I have failed to understand whether I need someone and attached to the feelings I selfishly feed on, or whether I love them and vice versa. It is a journey of enlightenment, self learning and development, and what have worked for me in order to better understand the difference might not work for you, but I can give you one tip; the only way for your journey to start is when you fully accept who you are as a person and that you are enough exactly as you are now with no changes. Only when you understand and accept that, your journey of discovery will start.
Love is not a need, and it is not meant to hold us back, nor tame us. Rather,it is our moving engine. It can give us wings to fly higher in life, and can motivate us to do More, be More and Live More.
May we all seek, find and spread that kind of love within us first then around.