It takes a lot of strength and internal reflection to examine your relationships and seek out signs that you’re a love addict.
Most people with love addiction don’t know what they are suffering from and it’s only upon reading about the disease that symptoms and signs begin to make sense and patterns begin to emerge. Love addiction comes in many forms from short, passion-filled relationships that end quickly to long-term, overlapping relationships with extreme highs and lows. Just like any other addiction, love addiction is a compulsive behavior that the addict uses to soothe uncomfortable feelings despite negative consequences.
You believe that you can only be happy if someone loves you.
You’re nobody til somebody loves you, right? Many love addicts feel this way and it is the most basic of many signs you’re a love addict. You feel incomplete as a person without someone by your side that loves you and are unsure how to function as a single person. Your identity is lost in a relationship and you cannot happily go through the day to day activities of life without feeling empty or lonely.
You are attracted to partners who are needy.
Emotionally unavailable, depressed, angry, grieving, physically disabled, etc. You name it you are drawn to them. Maybe it is your need to “fix” them or simply your subconscious desire to be with a like-minded soul. If they are broken, they are certainly no your radar.
You are unable to take the time to heal after a failed relationship.
Non-love addicts are equally saddened and heartbroken at the end of a relationship; the difference is that non-love addicts are able to take time for themselves and heal before jumping into a new partnership. If you are emotionally unable to take time for yourself and time to mend after a breakup, it is one of the biggest sign you’re a love addict. The feelings of despair become overwhelming to the point of actively searching out a new relationship before you are fully over the previous one.
You avoid the truth and create fairy tales.
You make excuses for your partner to hide the reality of your relationship and ignore your own needs. For example, you take care of everything in the household, because your partner is tired or depressed. You lie and make excuses for your partner to friends and family members, downplaying the amount of effort you put in.
You jump from one relationship to the next once the infatuation wears off.
This is a different form of love addiction, referred to as romantic addiction or infatuation addiction. If you quickly get bored after the initial infatuation wanes and use it as an excuse to jump quickly into another, newer partnership this is a major sign that you may have this form of love addiction. It refers to being addicted to the large doses of “love hormones” that flood the brain at the start of a new romantic, relationship and is just a serious a form of love addiction.
You allow your partner to mistreat you.
Many love addicts become accustomed to a lack of love and emotional support in their younger years. So it only makes sense that you put up with your partner’s abusive behavior. You think of it as “normal” and what you are “worth”.
You take more than your share of responsibility in a relationship.
You may shower the source of your addiction with gifts, even if they go unappreciated. You do most of the work in your relationship, including planning trips, dates or elaborate surprises in an effort to get the same amount of attention returned.
You remain in bad relationships.
Because love addicts are genuinely afraid to be unattached, they will often stay in a relationship that is negative rather than being alone. You may justify staying with an emotionally, physically or financially abusive partner by telling yourself that being in a bad relationship is better than not having a relationship. Even if you gather the strength to leave your partner or he or she leaves you, you will often return or beg to be taken back to avoid the feelings of loneliness and despair.
You abandon your sense of self for your partner’s needs.
You will try to “heal” or “save” your partner by taking care of all of his needs and wants. You are the master chameleon, molding yourself into whatever you believe your partner most desires.
You are needy and clingy in a relationship.
It is hard for you to feel loved without someone to tell you how amazing you are. If your partner is not available physically and emotionally to give you the devotion you are seeking, you become increasingly needy and clingy. You require more attention and more affection from your partner than a non-love addict and this will usually begin to drive them away, which only increases your neediness.
You place all of the focus on your partner.
You put all of the focus on your partner, taking the focus away from your own inner pain and turmoil. By working on the relationship and your partner, you avoid working on yourself.
Romance is the most important part of your life.
Relationships with friends and family will suffer when you are in a romantic relationship, as that becomes the most important thing in your life. Even when you are not involved in a romantic pairing, the only thing that matters is becoming attached again so it is hard to concentrate and work and difficult to maintain personal growth and friendships. Nothing else is as important as finding or keeping love.