Choosing to Love Can Hurt

There is a time for risky love. There is a time for extravagant gestures. There is a time to pour out your affections on one you love. And when the time comes - seize it, don't miss it. - Max Lucado

There is a time for risky love. There is a time for extravagant gestures. There is a time to pour out your affections on one you love. And when the time comes – seize it, don’t miss it.
– Max Lucado

Love is often depicted as a flowery, happy emotion. Characters in movies fall into it with a single glance and are willing to give up all other commitments to follow its call. People break off relationships because the feelings are gone. Even some of the symbols of love (hearts, pink, flowers, etc.) seem a bit frivolous.

There is a sweet and joyous side to love. As a romantic, I am prone to see the world that way at times. There is nothing wrong with the tingling emotions when holding someone’s hand or making valentines for a special person. All of this is one important aspect of love.

However, there is more than just that. Love is also a choice, not just an emotion. We have to make the decision to care for others even when we are annoyed or respect others even when we disagree. These decisions are difficult and can hurt. Still, they show true love – more so than the fabled true love’s kiss from Snow White.

There are many instances in our lives when this choice comes into play. One for me is at work. Some customers are rude or coworkers are uncaring. Instead of lashing out, I must be strong to care for myself while still treating them with patience, empathy, and respect. Sometimes that might mean walking away and not responding to a cruel comment. Other times, I might need to respond with kindness instead of bitterness.

Doing this is difficult. Choosing to rely on pure emotion (such as frustration or pride) would be easier. Yet, as one coworker told me yesterday, we must make the choice to treat others kindly. That is not a sign of weakness but of strength.

The next time that you discover that loving is difficult, try to remind yourself that love is not always easy. It can hurt. However, in the end, loving others will bring you more peace and joy than responding with sourness or only thinking of yourself.

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6 thoughts on “Choosing to Love Can Hurt

  1. When I have left certain relationships, such as my last one, I have had my ex’s tell me that because I love them I need to keep trying to make it work. I have always despised the idea that love means I need to ALWAYS love no matter what. It is a choice. If there is one person I should always love, it’s myself and sometimes loving myself means not loving someone else anymore.

  2. ashokbhatia says:

    Yes, it surely has its flip side!
    What happens when a loved one is sick and we find ourselves helpless in a situation? It hurts like mad.

  3. For me, loving a creature who walks on two is painful in many ways. The emotional exhaustion that follows even a short time of communicating or even being around someone, the fear of disappointing another person, having to put up with their noise and their neurotypical ways, having to change plans at the last minutes to accommodate them, and the fear something horrible will happen to someone I love born out of general anxiety.

    There are many hurdles in the aspie way to love.

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