Is Love Really an Action?

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

When you look up “love” in a dictionary, you will first see the definition of the noun form and then the definition of the verb form.

Love as a noun means deep affection while love as a verb means to feel and/or to give deep affection.

So, I guess that’s that. Love is an action after all, right?

Yes, it definitely is. But I would be remiss not to mention an issue that has become more glaring the more I pay attention to its existence.

Abusers are well aware that love is an action and they will use that to get into the lives of those who just want happy, healthy love.

When we talk about love being an action, we do so because we used to largely associate love with the feelings and emotion of love — the noun form of love.

But then we wised up. We realized that just because someone has deep feelings for us doesn’t mean much if they don’t back it up with the requisite actions.

In order to feel loved, we needed to see it demonstrated. Words are cheap but actions speak a thousand words.

In realizing this, a lot of us were able to walk away from people who probably cared but either not enough to show it or had their own demons battling inside, possibly stemming from an insecure attachment style.

Whatever the reason, we leveled up and we knew what we deserved: love demonstrated.

This is good but unfortunately it isn’t enough.

The truth of the matter is that there are people who are more than willing to do all the loving things you’ve been dreaming of but they are still toxic.

Think of narcissists and love addicts who love-bomb you with words, actions and gifts. Whatever your love language is, they already know it and are giving you exactly what you’ve always wanted.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is a trick.

If someone you barely know is showering you with affection, run. They are going to exploit you.

The only time this behavior is appropriate is when parents are snuggling up to their newborn baby. And even then many parents are very careful on how they care for the child.

Think about it. Someone who showers you with affection but doesn’t know you is probably fishing for something.

They have a need that they must fulfill. Why else would they be so gun-ho on giving love? You could be a serial killer for all they know, so why wouldn’t they take the opportunity to get to know you before fawning over you?

Also, please bear in mind that those of us who were in relationships or situationships with people who didn’t show their love are more susceptible to fall for people who are the polar opposite and shower their object of desire with affection.

When you revel in finally getting what you wanted, you might ignore your intuition and simply bask in the glory or being loved. But I implore you to give that little small voice a megaphone and to pay attention to the nervousness in your stomach.

Yes, there may be butterflies but there’s also a ticking clock with a bomb attached.

What you need is someone who is balanced. They feel love for you but they get to know you because they’re genuinely interested in who you are and are not primarily focused on what they can get from you.

Over time, their love is expressed in actions with increasing levels of intimacy and vulnerability.

They need to trust you just as much as you need to trust them. They need to demonstrate their growing level of trust to you just as much as you need to demonstrate your growing level of trust to them.

If you can maintain this, then you’ve got yourself a winner.

But if at any point the trust takes a hit, the relationship will suffer. The trust has to be rebuilt — not with love-bombing and a ton of action to show how much you care, but with consistent care and vulnerability.

It all boils down to intention. If one really care about another and they don’t have their demons blocking them from love, they will show it. If they mess up, they will fix it. Otherwise, it’s not love. It’s just infatuation, lust or ego-gratification.

As author Greg Behrendt wrote, “You already have one *sshole. You don’t need another. Make a space in your life for the glorious things you deserve.”

Former Edu. Psychologist | Current Writer | Constant Learner | “By your stumbling the world is perfected.”

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