Are you in love or lust?
Dealing with emotions can be tough and confusing, especially at the start of a relationship. When you’re dating someone it’s easier than you might think to confuse lust with love. Sometimes it can be hard to tell which emotion you’re experiencing because both feel pretty amazing and they have lots of similarities. Both can create a feeling of connection and excitement with your partner, but no matter how similar they can feel, they’re definitely not the same thing.
What is lust?
When you’re in lust you have an intense, physical attraction and desire for your partner and the connection between you is mostly sexual. On the flip side, when you’re in love your relationship with your partner is mostly based on affection, caring attraction and emotional attachment. Sex is important, but not the basic principle of your relationship. When in love, you focus more on getting to know your partner and trying to make each other genuinely happy, in addition to your sexual attraction to them. Lust can transform into deep romantic love, but it usually takes more time.
To better help you differentiate between lust and love, we’ll break down the stages of falling in love.
First stage: Lust
The first stage of falling in love. When you become interested in someone, you’re driven by desire and sexual hormones. This stage is totally normal and can begin immediately after you meet someone. Some signs that you’re in lust include focusing on the physical appearance of the person you desire, being more interested in a sexual relationship instead of an emotional connection, and being lovers but not friends.
Second stage: ‘Love-struck’
This ‘love-struck’ phase is usually when you start daydreaming about your object of desire, you catch yourself thinking about them all the time or you remember special moments you spent together. It’s also when you start feeling a strong desire to be with them, so much so that you might lose your appetite or sleep. Technically, this is still part of being in lust, although it’s likely that you’ll be starting to develop strong feelings at this point
Third stage: Love and Attachment
This is the stage in which you’ve moved past the initial enthusiasm and have managed to get to know your partner beyond the flirting phase. During this stage, you feel like you have a more wholesome understanding of your partner, including their strengths and weaknesses, while choosing to still accept them and keep loving them. You’re driven by an emotional attachment and desire to commit to that person and make them happy. This type of love is a balance between sexual craving and emotional craving, in which sex is important but so is spending quality time together, learning from each other and making plans for the future together.
Signs that you’re in true romantic love include getting lost in conversations together for hours, genuinely wanting to listen to each other’s feelings, thoughts and opinions and being comfortable staying with them in silence. Spending hours doing nothing can seem like the best time!
To sum up
If you’re still unsure about whether you’re in lust or love, then just remember that the basic difference between the two lies in staying power. No matter how long the lust phase lasts for, it ultimately fades – either into a breakup or blossoming into love.
Whichever phase you’re currently in, make sure to enjoy the great parts and try to work out the hard parts that come with every relationship, and remember to love and respect yourself first and foremost!
There you have it, our advice on lust vs love! If you’d like more dating tips and advice on how to search for love online, register today and check out our list of 8 real relationship goals you actually need or how to deal with emotionally unavailable singles.