Is It Love Or Just Fear Of Loneliness?

In a world where you can connect with your friends with a simple press of a button, it may seem strange that the fear of being alone has grown exponentially over the years. Loneliness is terrible, and as humans, each of us is born to desire connection. Humans are social creatures whose survival is based entirely on building a collective society in which everyone joins together. It is no wonder that social fears have taken three of the top ten phobias. The fear of being lonely goes by many names, but the most common term is monophobia. Monophobia has many effects on the human psyche, interestingly including an increase in agoraphobia (fear of Fear of places and situations that might cause panic, helplessness, or embarrassment) or a desire to retreat entirely from society.

One of the most significant issues facing those who fear loneliness is a desperate need to soothe themselves by continuously being in a relationship. These types of relationships very rarely end well, and some can even be extremely unhealthy. It is an easy thing to fall into the trap of thinking “oh well, this is making me feel better, it must be love,” when in reality this moment of peace will not offer long-term happiness. Unfortunately, it can often be difficult to determine the difference between loving someone accurately, and simply wanting to be with anyone due to insecurity.  Here are some simple questions you can ask yourself to help decide if your relationship is built on love, or fear.

What do you talk about?

The things you know about a person can say a lot about your connection. If someone talks about their family often, it may display that they may have a desire for you to become a part of their family in the future as well. Another example is if a person continuously shares information about career goals, it can be a sign of their respect for you and that they admire your professional input.  What you and partner choose, or choose not share, can often guide you to what you honestly feel about each other. Take a more in-depth look at the topics and language you and your partner use around one another and see if this is fitting to both your characters. Perhaps you’ll find you only pick topics that interest them to keep them near, or maybe they only say things to keep you down to do the same. Either way, it’s very true when people say that conversation is the key to any relationship, so listen wisely.

Could they be replaced?

Self-confidence plays a crucial role in loneliness. People with monophobia are often reported to have low self-esteem, and this can lead to them surrounding themselves with the first person who will take them. With this in mind, it is essential to consider if the person you’re with could really be anyone else. Picture a stranger walking up to you and offering to take you out. If you felt a strong desire to take this person’s, whom you just met, invitation, it could be a sign the person you are currently with may not be someone you truly have feelings for. Sometimes the company, in general, is what we desire more than the actual person.

Do you do anything without them?

If you are unable to do even simple things like shopping or going to a friend’s house without them, it most likely means you need them more so than just wanting them. Having your own identity is essential in a relationship, but those who are in a relationship built on fear will often be unwilling to separate themselves from their partner.

What does your future look like?

Some people picture some kids and a white picket fence, while others imagine traveling the world together when thinking about their future with the person they love. A telling sign of fear-based relationships is the inability to have a clear vision of the future with them. You may be able to see that picket fence, but the face beside you is nothing but a blur. If you have can’t even imagine a future together that could easily be a way of telling you there shouldn’t be one.

Are you more sad or anxious?

You are sitting in your room soon after you hear their car pull away. Someone who is in love may naturally feel sad and feel a bit depressed until they can talk to them again. They may feel like sleeping or snacking on something fatty. Someone who merely fears loneliness will start feeling anxious or scared even. They may want to call them right away or find themselves feeling lost. Noticing which of these you feel will aid you in determining the foundation of your relationship.

No one wants to believe that their relationship is built on fear, but opening your eyes to the truth, though painful, will lead to more healthy options.  It is so important to remember that you are not a lost flee ridden puppy looking for a home, but a person who has an endless amount of potential to clean themselves up again and show the world that they have more to offer on the inside than anyone ever thought to look for. No one is ever truly alone in this world, every one of us has a chance to find someone who cares for us the way we care for them. Humans will always be social beings; it only takes a few words connect to someone. Family, neighbors, co-workers, and even millions of people on the internet are ready for you to reach out and simply say “Hi.”

1 comment
  1. In a certain way this can be interpreted vaguely. What if you love someone, but couldn’t imagine your life without them? You hear this constantly esp in those who are married. You also miss them sometimes when they are gone. You also hear people talking about ending up lonely in older years, and noone wants that unless they are just loners which is rare. Maybe I’m taking this a bit out of context… but I’ve heard some people say that “love” is nothing special, it’s just chemicals, and that relationships are just for people who don’t want to be alone. Wow. I’m sure it’s one motivating factor, but certainly not the motivating factor, anyhow some thoughts?

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