I Don’t Want To Lose Myself In Love

If you feel like you could ‘lose yourself’ in a love relationship, this love-life problem could deter you from starting and/or staying in a love relationship. Let’s figure out what ‘losing yourself’ in love really means.

When two people are in love, there are always three (3) things going on at the same time: your individuality, your lover’s individuality, and the mutual experience both of you are having. When people are afraid of losing themselves in love, it usually involves a fear of losing their individuality in the emotional intensity of love.

My old friend Ben used to say that we all have a ‘space’ to stand in. That the space assigned to you is uniquely your own. No one else should be standing in your space. When you are standing in your own unique space, everything you do in your life is more meaningful including your love-life.

In a love relationship you have to stand in your own unique space. In other words, you have to bring your own unique individuality to life in your relationship. That means speaking honestly and directly (not indirectly) to your lover about what you think and feel. It means standing up for yourself when that is necessary to do. It means being yourself in the relationship no matter what. It means being yourself even when it might disturb the expectations your lover has of you.

The ‘practice’ of being and staying yourself in love will make it easier for you to be fully present and loving in your relationship. When people feel that they have to hide who they are, it is always harder to love and be loved. If you and I were in a  love relationship, if you hide your true self from me, I wouldn’t be able to love you, that is, love the real you. You’d always feel like I won’t or can’t accept and love the real you, and I’d always have this deeper sense that I don’t really know you.

I called this a ‘practice’ a moment ago because it’s something you have to keep practicing over the course of a love relationship. We’re all humans and therefore we struggle with being honest and open in this world of ours. There are so many pressures to deceive ourselves and others. So many pressures and fears compelling us to lie about ourselves to the people we love.

The fact is, honesty is a true pillar of love. Without honesty love fades and eventually dies. The reward you get for the practice of honestly being yourself in love is the possibility of having the experience of being loved for who you are. No lies, no make-up, no misrepresentations, no excuses, no make-believe, no losing yourself.

You have a better chance of being loved for who you really are, if you practice hanging onto your individuality in love while expressing it to your lover. If your lover can accept or love you for who you are, great! Congratulations, you’re a lucky person. If your lover can’t accept or love you for who you are, move on to another. You may not have love at this point in time, but at least you won’t be lost.

Comments? Welcome. Dr. Tom Jordan




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Dr. Jordan

Dr. Thomas Jordan is a clinical psychologist, certified interpersonal psychoanalyst, author, professor, and love life researcher.

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