NRE: Is it Love or something else?

I was listening to a song today while I drove in to class. The lyrics caught my attention because they seem to me to address a common misperception. One which happens to bother me.                                It bothers me A LOT in relationships and even more so in poly relationships.

What do you call it when you are caught up in NRE? Is it love? Is it a crush? Is it strong “like”? What is it?

Frequently people jump right into the “I love you” and then when things fall apart as NRE wears off, they talk of their heart being broken and they are upset about their “love” having not been who they assumed they were. But, was it ever love?
I don’t think so.

I think in fact, that the assumption it is love, is at the heart of why so many relationships fail. Love is something that grows over time in a situation where you actually know each other’s “warts”. That alone makes it damn near impossible to have “love” in a relationship that is still in the “honeymoon stage”.

This NRE time, this honeymoon stage is the time BEFORE YOU LEARN ABOUT EACH OTHERS WARTS. It’s not until you start to really experience a person’s true persona, you know, the one that they don’t consciously manufacturer when they are “putting their best foot forward”, that you can actual begin to love them. We all try to put our best foot forward when we meet a new person. But, this is only a small part of who we are. There is a whole other side of us, the one that loses our temper, puts off doing the dishes, drops our dirty laundry on the floor by the bed; the part of us that is possessive, clingy, breaks boundaries and disregards other people’s feelings…

Loving someone requires accepting them. Accepting them for who they are, as they are; and that requires having some realistic idea of they are-not only knowing who they are when they have their best foot forward, but also knowing who they are when they are dancing with only left feet. It means knowing their faults, their weaknesses. It means knowing that they aren’t prince (or princess) charming, but that in fact they are one more jester, dressed up in nice clothing.

Only after we know someone, only after we let them see the REAL person we are with all of OUR faults and weaknesses; after we know them and they know us when we are in our worst form can be even begin to assess if we can and do love one another.

  • There’s nothing wrong with enjoying the thrill of the chase.
  • There’s nothing wrong with enjoying the NRE.
  • There’s nothing wrong with making the best of those innocent beginnings when we don’t yet know their bad qualities and they don’t know ours.

But-let’s be realistic and let’s be honest. Don’t lie to them, don’t lie to ourselves. This isn’t love.

If it fails to grow into a deeply meaningful, loving relationship lets also be honest about what we are grieving for!

We aren’t heartbroken over the loss of our love-

we’re heartbroken over finding out

we haven’t yet found our love.

There is a HUGE difference!

Let’s not delude ourselves into believing that we are experiencing something more than a crush when we aren’t. Lets fully immerse ourselves in honesty and enjoy the fact that having a crush is FUN! Let’s not delude ourselves into believing that a crush that never becomes more is a huge loss of love. Let’s fully embrace the knowledge that we had FUN while we were testing the waters and searching for love and having fun while we search for love is much nicer than being lonely and miserable while we search for love.
But-having fun doesn’t make it love. It isn’t meant to and it doesn’t need to. It can simply be having fun and that’s good enough! Just enjoy that crush for what it is instead of trying to convince yourself or someone else that its more than a crush!

 

Lyla McCann “Crush”

You…you might be the one
So let’s not rush it, let’s not jump the gun
Sometimes love is an illusion
Let’s make it clear just so there’s no confusion

It’s just a crush I’m feelin’
Walkin’ on the ceilin’
My whole world’s upside down
It’s just a crush, I know it
Don’t know where we’re goin’
But I like it where we are right now
It’s too soon to be too much
I’m not ready to call it love
It’s just a crush
A crush

You…I like you a lot
But I’m not sure if it’s meant to be or not
Yeah, you could say, say we’re together
But no one’s said a word about the word forever

It’s just a crush I’m feelin’
Walkin’ on the ceilin’
My whole world’s upside down
It’s just a crush, I know it
Don’t know where we’re goin’
But I like it where we are right now
It’s too soon to be too much
I’m not ready to call it love
It’s just a crush
A crush

You…you might be the one
So let’s not rush it, let’s not jump the gun

It’s just a crush I’m feelin’
Walkin’ on the ceilin’
My whole world’s upside down
It’s just a crush, I know it
Don’t know where we’re goin’
But I like it where we are right now
It’s too soon to be too much
I’m not ready to call it love
It’s just a crush
A crush

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