Simply said, to love unconditionally love is to love without conditions. It’s love that you freely give. It’s not something you base on what someone does for you in return. You simply care about them and want the best for them.
This kind of love, also known as agape or compassionate love, may seem somewhat familiar to you. Maybe it reminds you of how much your parents love you or how much you love your own child. Unconditional love is frequently associated with familial affection, although many people also seek this love in romantic partnerships.
It is admirable to strive to love unconditionally in partnerships. Everyone wants to be loved unconditionally, just as they are, and to believe that they are capable of doing the same for their relationships. But in its most limited sense, this kind of love is challenging, if not impossible.
What is unconditional love?
The phrase “unconditional love” does not imply unrestricted or limitless love. It implies, “I freely and unconditionally offer you my affection.” This means that when we show love, we do so without expecting anything in return. In our relationships, showing this kind of unconditional love is crucial. If not, we are giving the love that has “strings attached.” Unbalances in power and control result from this.
To love unconditionally entails supporting a partner despite challenges, setbacks, and frustrations. In actuality, it is the foundation of every meaningful, enduring relationship. When we form relationships with other people, we do so with another human being—someone with their own peculiarities, quirks, and difficulties. We also display our own peculiarities, shortcomings, and difficulties.
Learning to embrace the tension of such problems by providing connection, love, and understanding as well as by accepting influence, forging compromises, and moving forward in a way that benefits both parties is one of life’s most wonderful experiences.
Is possible to love unconditionally?
Unconditional love and the expectations that go along with it may sound difficult in a number of ways. You have every reason to believe so, of course. You might want to take a step back if the idea of showing your lover unconditional love compels you to behave in an unnatural way.
Living in a fairy tale is not what it means to love unconditionally. It does not imply having inflated expectations of either your partner or yourself. On the contrary, it refers to genuinely loving your partner. Being unselfish in your expression of love is necessary, as opposed to simply adoring someone so they’ll reciprocate your affection or do something nice for you.
Every person is unique, and this includes their approach to love. Understanding these weaknesses and overcoming them are essential components of unconditional love. It involves finding your spouse and giving them warmth, kindness, safety, and respect. True unconditional love is achievable, provided that your perspective on it is sound.
Do you ever wonder if being vulnerable or emotionally feeble comes from loving someone without conditions? Let’s examine whether unconditional love is wise or healthy.
Is unconditional love healthy?
Giving your affection without conditions is healthy. We are not actually loving the other person if we don’t do this. Instead, we are utilising affection as a means of restraint. Offering unconditional affection, however, is unhealthy.
Kindness, respect, and safety are fundamental standards that must be met in our relationships. We may need to impose strict limitations if these are not met. These restrictions may take the form of seclusion or complete cutoff. If you do break off, it does not imply that you gave your affection with certain restrictions.
Keep in mind that neither you nor they were obligated to the other due to your love. They owe you nothing at all. But you do owe it to yourself to be safe, considerate, and courteous. You have the option of separating from those you formerly loved deeply in order to look out for your needs and safety.
The problem with love without boundaries
Without limits, love can at best result in dissatisfaction and at worst, abuse. We won’t have an equal voice in the partnership if we don’t communicate our expectations for treatment with our partners, parents, kids, and friends.
Sometimes, in the name of “unconditional love,” we disregard these desires for boundaries. But we aren’t giving unconditional love at that time. Codependent love is what we’re giving. We get so focused on preserving the dynamics of the relationship in codependent relationships that we justify or support inappropriate behaviour. Again, this takes us away from a position of really connected love where we give each individual a chance to take ownership of their behaviour with us and instead to one of uneven power and control.
There is a clear distinction between supporting someone through difficulties and tolerating bad behaviour. When a partnership is no longer providing the fundamental requirements of a connection, the latter becomes apparent. You must set boundaries for your own safety if someone has hurt you and is unwilling to make things right.
A boundary needs to be established if you see that the behaviour in the relationship has become unkind and disrespectful. This is particularly true if you have made an effort to communicate clearly yet nothing has changed. It is not unconditional love if you are assisting the other person in a way that compromises your wellbeing; it is unhealthy, codependent love.
Unconditional love is not a binding contract
Though we feel obligated to continue showing love even when fundamental relational expectations are no longer being met, unconditional love becomes tainted. “I offer you this love right now, and you are not in debt to me,” is what unconditional love means. It does not imply that “I give you this love, exactly as you are, permanently, even if you begin to damage me.”
Take a healthy relationship, for instance, where the partners are providing one other with the fundamental and essential requirements of a partnership—kindness, respect, and safety. After going through something, one person starts to treat their spouse disrespectfully or cruelly, and that is when things start to shift. You have the option of setting limits or keeping your distance when that changes.
This doesn’t imply that your love hasn’t always been unrequited. In this instance, you gave your love as freely as you could before establishing healthy limits when you realised you needed to take care of yourself.
Love without conditions is what is meant by unconditional love at that particular time. It does not always imply indefinitely. It implies, “You can keep the affection I’m offering you right now. I choose to do it voluntarily. You have nothing to give back to me.” When we show someone true love in this way, we are giving them the freedom to be who they are.
It is also the kind of love that enables us to evaluate the relationship on a regular basis and determine over time if it is still beneficial to us and whether we can continue freely sharing our love.
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