The Myths of Romantic Love

It helps us to bond, establish relationships with others, create safe spaces and move forward with each other. Emotion is innate and has accompanied us in all the processes of our evolution. However, cultural patterns, experiences or the education received shape it and can create different dysfunctions, as happens from the myths of romantic love.

Healthy Emotion

The emotion of love opens the doors for us to create a bond with another person, regardless of the type of union. We feel love with our family, our friends, our Husband/Wife and even with coworkers. This emotion will have different nuances depending on the type of union, with greater affection or intimacy, but with the same basis: surrender, commitment and protection.

We arrive at this healthy union when we create a safe space, where there are no invasions, where we feel that the other pushes us in our development, when there is a balance or there is mutual admiration. Pillars necessary for love to be full and we feel within a true safe space. This allows us to open up, have confidence and grow as people thanks to the other.

In this relationship we begin to give love, as we know how to ask for it and receive it. That balance evolves and the relationship advances as the love felt increases. We can express ourselves and share what we feel and it shows that we are satisfied with the relationship and with love in its healthiest version. But is what we feel always beneficial?

The Myths of Romantic Love

Harmful Relationships

The culture in which we operate and our education teaches us directly and indirectly to bond with others through different emotions and, of course, emphasizing love. But not always the teachings received, even if they come from the majority, are the healthiest and the one that can work best for us. 

This is especially aggravated in couple relationships, where there is no instruction manual and we can learn everything we know from the couples we saw when we were little, from the movies or from the different easy tips that our close environment gives us. When everything observed is positive, we are lucky to unite in a constructive way. But unfortunately, this is not always the case. It's where the myths of romantic love come into play.

At the social level we accumulate different beliefs that we pass from generation to generation, with slight variations as society advances. These variations are not always consistent with what is necessary and emotionally healthy. 

Love is one of the structures that accumulates more burdens and many of the problems that lead us to therapy is our difficulty when it comes to fitting our beliefs and desires with the reality of day to day. 

We have certain beliefs, observed and learned about how a relationship should work, based on romantic and passionate foundations that can end up doing us a lot of harm. In fact, these myths pose unbalanced relationships, highly emotionally charged and with roller coasters that can end up being toxic for both parties.

The myths of romantic love

We must differentiate what the emotion of love really is from what a relationship is. The first is something innate that helps us to bond within a safe space, while the second is a social construct that, although it can bring us numerous benefits, if it is not done from safe structures, it can end up leaving psychological consequences. The problem is not the relationship itself, but the beliefs that make us mold it with a series of harmful characteristics. 

That is so harmful are the myths of romantic love, what we have transmitted to each other socially and that seems to mark us that the more passionate a relationship is, the happier it will end up being. Concepts such as jealousy or the better half are not always based on the real emotion of love, but they are socially linked to what it is really to be in a relationship.

What are the myths of romantic love and what do they tell us? Understanding them, knowing that they are not real, but that we have built them, will help us to eradicate them from our beliefs and to be able to find a link with our partner from balance and security.

The Myths of Romantic Love

1. Jealousy

We associate feeling jealous with the fact that we care about a person and with loving or being loved. However, jealousy is not synonymous with love. Respect for the other's freedom or trust does not go hand in hand with the imposition of limits, as jealousy pursues.

2. The Better Half

It is one of the myths that we are most clearly eliminating on a social level. There are already many people who defend that they are not half of another, that they are not incomplete and that in themselves they are already a perfect whole. The belief in this myth pushes us to desperately search for another to complement us. And in desperation we always make bad choices.

3. Exclusivity

This myth stems from the fear that the other person will leave and that we do not feel safe about ourselves. We impose a series of limits that do not always go with what the other person wants. 

Removing this myth does not imply opening the relationship to a polyamorous alternative, but rather being aware that my life is not exclusive to my partner and that I have the power to say I am where I want, even if the other is not.

4. Love Can Do Everything

Love only loves. When we put sadness, fear or anger, the true essence is lost. We justify the struggle that love is designed to power everything, like distance. However, love doesn't have to climb mountains to be authentic if one partner doesn't want to.

The Myths of Romantic Love

5. Opposites Attract

That people different from us attract our attention is indisputable. However, this is not always healthy. I can be linked to an opposite by an emptiness that I feel, by something that I lack and I want the other to take care of it. 

I am attracted to the opposite by the promise that it will fulfill me, but with the certainty that different incompatibilities will end up damaging me. A relationship based on affinities will bring me many more benefits, even if I have to deal with my gaps.

Although five myths of romantic love appear here, there are many others that are still buried in the collective unconscious. Current psycho pedagogical models struggle to tear down all unhealthy beliefs about how we bond. Demystifying love implies lowering it from the pedestal where we had placed it, making it more earthly, although that seems to take away some magic in the short term.

However, in the long term it would end the wounds, with relationships where there are no safe structures or with loneliness and emptiness due to not having a partner, since it would no longer be seen as something negative.

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