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Why Can’t I Love?

Asked by on with 1 answer:

Hi, I’m not sure if this is a problem worthy of your time, but it causes me a lot of distress. It’s affecting my life a lot.

I’ve come to realize that I can’t get emotionally attached to people. I mean, I’m very sociable, talkative and get along with everybody. The problem is, I can’t get emotionally attached in a deeper level, like in a relationship.

I never fell in love or anything like that. If I find a guy who gives me attention and is cute, I start to think a lot about him, but as soon as it comes, it also goes. This also tends to happen in my relationships, for example, I find a guy that is really nice to me and I’m convinced that I like him because I’m always wanting to talk to him, but after awhile, everything fades away or I start to feel suffocated for no apparent reason. Then I feel like they start to annoy me for no reason, even just their presence. I end up breaking up with them and feeling really bad and guilty for hurting them.

I don’t know why this happens, I’m actually a very sensitive person, I’m a very good listener and people tend to come and talk to me when they have troubles. I also cry very easy when I see people hurting on tv, like natural disasters, or tv dramas. I’m also very sensitive to people’s troubles and human rights. In some ways I’m very introspective, I like to be alone a lot and need it to recharge my batteries.

I don’t know if this is relevant, but I love my family. When my parents get home from vacation I run down the stairs like a little kid on Christmas morning. Yesterday I sat on the bus on my way home and I saw my brother walking down the street, my mood instantly changed. He didn’t even see me! I just love my family and I never feel as loved and comfortable and happy as when I am home. So why can’t I fall in love?

Why Can’t I Love?

Answered by on -

A.

You think that something is wrong, when in fact nothing may be wrong. Perhaps you have yet to meet the right person. That’s what dating is all about. You meet someone, you get to know them and if you don’t like them, you end the relationship. That is how it works. You choose one to marry but only after rejecting many. It takes time to find the right one.

You seem to have expectations or assumptions about love and relationships. I wonder if you are judging yourself against arbitrary standards and inappropriately determining that you don’t make the cut. Perhaps your ideas about love and relationships are based upon popular culture and if so, they could be very skewed. What you see in movies doesn’t accurately reflect real-life relationships.

Abraham Maslow writes about the nature of interpersonal relationships among the most psychologically healthy people. He finds that they have especially deep relationships with few individuals. He notes that their circle of important people is rather small. That’s because getting to know someone on the deep level is time-consuming. “Devotion is not a matter of the moment.” Deep, meaningful relationships — loving relationships — require a great deal of time. They are more demanding when compared to other types of relationships.

You don’t want to waste your time on someone, you have determined through dating, who is not a match. Based on what you have written, you seem to be doing all of the right things. If you continue to be concerned about your ability to connect with people, consult a therapist. An evaluation by an in-person therapist may bring you peace of mind in a way that my internet answer, with all of its generalities, cannot. Good luck.

Why Can’t I Love?

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2018). Why Can’t I Love?. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 18, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2018/04/29/why-cant-i-love/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 26 Apr 2018
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 26 Apr 2018
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.