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Loving somebody vs being in love

  1. Sep 30, 2011 #1
    Is there a difference? Lately I feel there is...
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 30, 2011 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    You can love someone (as in caring about them) without being romantically "in love".
  4. Sep 30, 2011 #3


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    English is a horrible language for expressing love. What kind of a language is set up so that you can use the same word to describe intimacy with a life partner as you can to express your opinion on baked beans?!? As poncy as it sounds I prefer ancient Greek for it.
  5. Sep 30, 2011 #4
    Explain! :smile: What do you feel the difference is?? What happened??
  6. Sep 30, 2011 #5


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    Not a flaw in the language; it's in the application.

    When the person chooses to describe his appreciation for baked beans, he chooses a word that really means intimacy between people. This is essentially an hyperbole.

  7. Oct 1, 2011 #6
    I actually speak Greek as my mother language(modern of course) and wasn't sure if the title meant what I wanted to describe. Indeed these words still exist in modern Greek. Also what you describe can happen in my language too, although I don't know about the ancients. We too say things like "αγαπάω τη φασολάδα" (I love baked beans). It has both to do with the way the language is used and what vocabulary is available I believe. One could say "I like baked beans" or "baked beans taste great!" and mean the same thing because vocabulary for that is available and if one doesn't, one doesn't use the language well (although that is debatable). But how could one say "I love my kid" with another word besides "love"? No word in English I'm aware of. In this, Greek does a slightly better job. That's also why natural languages are so difficult to be understood by computers, they are very context sensitive.

    Also the article has a little mistake, φιλία (or friendship) does not mean brotherly love in modern (usually called "αδελφική αγάπη" and rarely "αδελφότητα" which also means brotherhood), but it did mean so in ancient Greece.
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2011
  8. Oct 1, 2011 #7
    Well... It was kind of an immature post, I was quite emotionally loaded.

    I just hate it that sometime, this "being in love" feeling goes away.

    Imagine having lived the best moments of your life with a person while being in love. Then 2 things can happen.

    1) After the feeling goes away, you feel nothing. This sucks because you see a person you loved so much as nothing anymore. And you felt so good that you'd like for it to last for ever. But that doesn't happen. There is an advantage in that you can just go for someone else.

    2) You actually start loving, as in Αγάπη that person. This is so different ,so intimate, you view the other as a reason to exist. But that sucks even more because when you "love" that person, that doesn't mean you automatically lost your ability to "fall in love" especially when young. And if that happens, if you indeed fall in love with another, then what can you do? From the one hand, you want to follow your passion and from the other, you'd never want to hurt your partner.

    All us humans want is to live the pleasures of "being in love" and then there comes this other "love" and then you are supposed to magically not feel any other temptation, as if it's the same thing being in love and loving somebody. And when the temptation comes, you can:

    1)do nothing but suffer in silence ("Μη ποιείν κραυγήν αλλά σιγή το πάθος φέρειν" as the ancients said, a favorite mentality for Spartans when losing a war).

    2)Leave your partner for the other. That hurts!

    3)Leave them both!

    All these options make us suffer and are the only available ones in ordinary relationships. And it all begun just by falling in love with the person we now "love". That has to be faulty! That makes no sense! It's like a trap with a bait you fell into. It's really kind of depressing.

    Is this society's fault? Neurochemicals? Is this actually right somehow? I don't know...
  9. Nov 24, 2011 #8
  10. Nov 27, 2011 #9
    An interesting observation related to this topic. A friend told me that all her life she would dream that she was another person involved in a very torrid romantic relationship but in the end both she and the person she was involved with in the dream turned into her real self and her husband. She found this so interesting that she and her husband started acting out impromptu scenarios as characters they created on the spot. They stayed madly in love until he died after 48 years together. A little imagination goes a long way in helping you stay "in love" rather than just loving one another.
  11. Dec 21, 2011 #10
    Being in love does not mean that you have fallen in love. It might be a case of infatuation. You can love somebody although you are not in love. This happens in marriages where they have become so familiar with each other, yet they know that they love each other.
  12. Dec 21, 2011 #11
    Some people lose their passion for each other but many do not and today, I think retaining that passion in a marriage or relationship has become much more common and much more important than it used to be. Husbands and wives in their 70's and 80's now still expect romance and more than a friendship (with each other). All those jokes about the blue pills are based on the truth.
  13. Dec 21, 2011 #12


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    I'm in love with baked beans.
  14. Dec 21, 2011 #13
    Ahh but do they love you back???
  15. Dec 22, 2011 #14
    I think the only difference is that the word "love" can be used to objects, can be exaggerated, and everything is crystal clear with the expression "in love", but when you say so common three words "I love you", the person will still get you right, and it shows in everything - in your voice, in your eyes...
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