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No, I'm serious.

I've scoured the S/R sub-forum for this question, and unless I revive some long-ago-dead thread, I won't find an answer.

Some people find it easy to say "I love you" and some others consider it a very difficult or special thing to say (or even feel).

* What is, in your opinion, 'love'?
* In what situation would you start feeling that you're beyond infatuation and are in fact 'in love'?
* When is a good time to say it?
* When is a good time to hear it?

and so on.

Personally, I think I need to re-evaluate (COMPLETELY) my definition of love, because at the moment it's a very shallow, silly perspective that I have. I get tangled up in my own feelings and blurt something out that I later am like "whaaa??" about. And I never know how to gauge if someone who says "I love you" really means it or not - I tend NOT to give them the benefit of the doubt, and view the whole love deal with a lot of suspicion and cynicism. Hence this thread.
 
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I think you need all of the elements balanced in a precarious way for it to be real.. That people should be unselfish and not out for "theirs" It should be a mutual passionate submission based on respect, dignity, compassion, understanding, forgiveness, humility, sincerity..both striving for wisdom and remembering they aren't enemies.. In the great marriages I have observed.. it seems both spouses feel an empathy for each other.. if hes hurt..shes hurt.. etc.

I don't trust it either.
 

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Firstly, I'd just like to say that a good time to say it and a good time to hear it should be one and the same, in my opinion. If one person is comfortable with it, the he/she should make sure the other person is comfortable with it too.

So. What is love according to user badwolf? Love cannot ever be a one-sided concept. It is absolutely imperative that love (in the context of S&R) be forthcoming from both of the parties involved. I also am a firm believer in love coming from shared experience. Love at first sight? Codswallop, in my opinion. It astounds me that there are couples with 15+ years in age difference. They were born and raised in different decades, with different world events and (most likely) different cultural values. However, if two people with such a vast difference in age are familiar with each other for a good long while and get married in their 40s/50s or something, I could understand that because they would have shared experience(s). Whether you're religious or not, the Bible offers a wonderful passage on love that I think everyone should read. In 1 Corinthians 13:1-3 it says, "If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing." I believe this part is speaking of love in general, but verses 4-7 can be directly related to romantic love; "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." And I can offer nothing more than that.

To me, there is no set situation when I move beyond infatuation and into true and genuine love. The spoken word means much to me. I cannot morally or ethically lie to anyone ever, and not simply because of my faith. In fact, I believe Horton from Dr. Seuss's Horton Hatches the Egg, said it best, "I meant what I said and I said what I meant," or to put it more accurately, "I mean what I say and I say what I mean." So, to me, at least from what I've noticed in the past, the only way for me to determine if I am, in fact, in love, is whether or not I am comfortable telling my girlfriend, "I love you." Which goes right back to what I said at the beginning of this post.

I honestly hope this has helped you/shed some light on the subject. Feel free to message me with any questions you might have.
 
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