Blinded by “love”? 11 signs that what you’re experiencing isn’t love

Sara | AbstractedCollective
6 min readApr 12, 2019


Photo by Pablo Heimplatz on Unsplash

In our eagerness to fall in love and find our happily ever after, many of us tend to play up certain aspects of meeting someone and assume that all that is love.

Then when things go awry down the road, we tell ourselves, “Love is blind”.

Is it really?

Or is it all down to us attributing the wrong things to love?

In this post, I write about the 12 signs that what you are experiencing isn’t love.

We have chemistry! (and nothing much else)

What is chemistry though? sparks? lust? physical attraction? Novelty? I guess it’s all of it. Chemistry is great, it’s a great feeling. But love I know it is not.

In this time of quick fixes and online dating, it seems we are always looking for that spark or a fireworks-like connection with someone. We dream of being swept off our feet. We dream of sitting across the table from our dream guy lookalike, gazing into his eyes and falling in love.

Not only do such scenes exist only in movies with the equally-predictable happily-ever-after (cause you know relationships aren’t all that).

But such intense heightened feelings are seldom built to last. It’s not humanly possible to sustain those emotionally intense, swoony, lustful feelings that you had on the day you met.

Love is also way more than that.

And what happens when you base love on intense, unsustainable feelings? It’s bound to crumble at some point.

Common interests

This comes up pretty often. Oh, we have the same taste in music and fashion! Oh I love eating my oreos dunked in milk too- soulmates forever!

Now, I’m not knocking on common interests because having absolutely nothing in common isn’t great. But I think many people make it a deal-breaker or use it as a foundation to establish the roots of a loving relationship.

There are billions of people walking planet earth, you are bound to find someone who likes the same things as you, no matter how obscure those interests are.

But liking the same stuff doesn’t mean you will like each other or are meant for one another.

Apathetic to your pain or concerns

Photo by Aarón Blanco Tejedor on Unsplash

Getting incredibly annoyed when you ask them for help? Oblivious to things going on in your life? Flat out disinterested when you tell them something is bothering you?

Now I know a lot of people aren’t really observant with things going on around them. But when your partner is keeled over half dying, in pain and needing to go to the A&E pronto, whilst u are able to sleep and carry on with your day like nothing happened?

Something is wrong.

I knew someone who would get incredibly annoyed whenever his wife fell ill. “What, I have to take leave again??” If this sort of apathy is already present in the dating stages, please do yourself a favour and drop them as quickly as you can.

Someone who doesn’t want to be around during your lows is someone who doesn’t love you that much, if at all.

It’s conditional

I love you only if you… Nah, when you have to place conditions on it, that ain’t love.

You just want someone to conform to your idea of a perfect partner and are totally unwilling to compromise.

In love with the idea of love

And usually only with the positive, fairy-tale stuff. The white weddings, the big house with the white picket fence, the large family with 5 kids and a 3 dogs…

People who are in love with the idea of love, or the superficial traits of a relationship aren’t really paying attention to what is in their reality.

These are the people who, once they snap out of the dream, feel sorely disappointed at the life or the partner that they actually chose for themselves.

They love the ideal, the pretty, nice bits of love. The highs. They can’t (or won’t) cope with reality or the lows.


Photo by Steven Spassov on Unsplash

Are you together with someone because… you are afraid of being alone? Afraid of not finding someone who fits you out there? Afraid that you’d look weird just cause everyone in your peer group is married or dating?

Being with someone just to soothe your fear of something isn’t love. It’s called filling a void.


Your partner doesn’t take an interest in the things you are interested in neither do they celebrate your wins.

Told him you finally got a pay raise after 5 years? He acts indifferent, annoyed, or worse, gets jealous or upset.

Love is teamwork, it’s about being there for someone’s big, happy moments in life. It’s not a competition and trying to one-up each other.

Physical affection grosses you out

You should feel like touching your partner, or at least the idea of doing so shouldn’t repulse you.

When you think of touching someone, or their physical affection offends you or worse, disgusts you, the love has disappeared somewhere in your relationship and it’s time to find out where.

Pleasure is all there is

Thinking you love someone because they are “beautiful”, “handsome”, “looks good in tartan”, “has great hair”. Or, saying things like he/she makes you feel good? Yup, that isn’t real love.

Not the true, mature, adult love you are looking for anyway.

They aren’t part of your plans

Photo by Cody Black on Unsplash

You don’t make big life decisions together. And rather they stay out of it.

Going on vacation without them is a great idea or moving to another country and not caring if they come along. And not even telling them you are moving til the last minute. Taking on a new job with odd hours and not caring if it affects them or your relationship.

I was once like this in a relationship and that’s when it hit me that I actually wanted my own space and didn’t see him as a long-term part of my life.

READ ALSO: The 8 habits that can make dating very tricky

By doing things like that, I was also unconsciously sabotaging the relationship; giving him a reason to leave.

When you make plans especially big ones without your partner in the picture…perhaps you don’t want them in your life anymore?


The constant need to be all up in their biz and stuck to them 24/7. Codependency isn’t cool and gives your relationship no space to breathe and the both of you, no chance to miss one another.

When an ex wanted to spend every single day with me, eat every meal together and wait for me outside the restaurant whilst I hung out with friends, I knew the relationship was over.

You had a life before you met your partner (hopefully), that should be the same after you meet him.

So what is love then?

Love is there in the good times, and especially in the bad times. It isn’t only present during the highs and disappears during the lows.

Love is deliberate action. It is about consciously making the choice to put in the effort and the commitment into the relationship.

Attraction, good looks, lust and intense feelings may be something that just happens, but that true love after the sparks have long fizzled out require our effort and willingness to make it all work.

Originally published at on April 12, 2019.

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Sara | AbstractedCollective

I write about relationships, personal growth and mental health. Dreamer. Tea addict. Researcher.