Do you think there’s a difference between loving someone and falling in love? While these phrases have been used synonymously to describe a typical love story, they are actually two totally distinct experiences.
Knowing what makes them similar and what distinguishes them can make a huge difference especially if you’re in a new relationship.
Here are ten differences between loving someone and being in love with someone.
1. Being in love is falling for someone fast; loving someone is falling for them over and over again.
Love, at first sight, is how they usually call the first and most typical sign of falling in love with someone you barely know. It’s the sudden rush of emotions of admiration and attraction towards another person and in a sense, a type of infatuation.
On the other hand, loving someone is the easy and effortless feeling of admiring a person and appreciating their existence in your life – especially after knowing them better as a person, a friend, and a potential romantic partner.
ALSO READ: Love vs. Infatuation: 12 Differences You Must Know
2. Being in love is an involuntary response; loving someone is a constant and consistent choice.
In relation to the first section, being in love with someone can be involuntary and intense, but if not nurtured, can also be short-lived. It’s an automatic response to what our mind sees as something physically pleasing. Most of the time, we fall in love with someone who represents our own definition of perfection.
Loving someone, on the other hand, requires constant and consistent effort. However, this “effort” is nothing like a responsibility nor an obligation. It’s more like a sense of willingness to commit and to make the decision to love that person every moment of every day, regardless of imperfections and flaws.
3. Being in love is fueled by passion; loving someone involves care, respect, and loyalty.
Passion fuels that intense feeling of being in love. However, the faster it burns and bursts, the swifter and sudden its demise. Just like that, that passionately burning relationship can be easily extinguished because its source is often limited and short-lived.
However, loving someone is like keeping a stable and steady flame. It’s not too bright and not too hot, with just the right amount of light illuminating the lives of two people who are willing to acknowledge care, respect, and loyalty as a fuel to their undying love for each other.
4. Being in love can be temporary; loving someone can last a lifetime.
Being in love, just like what was mentioned in the previous sections, is both short-lived and inconsistent. You can be in love with someone but it’s possible to get over this feeling as soon as you find out something that defies your definition of a perfect partner.
However, if you pass this test of accepting that person for who they really are, then you can finally say that you genuinely love them despite the fact that they’re not perfect. As soon as you both realize that this is what “true love” is really like, then you’ll know that you have finally found the one.
ALSO READ: True Love vs. Fake Love: 20 Differences You Must Know
5. Being in love starts with the physical; loving someone means going beyond the physical.
Being in love with someone starts with physical attraction and admiration, and it’s normal. You can’t blame yourself for falling for a person because they look beautiful and pleasing – but you have to know that it’s not the most important factor to consider if you truly want to find the one.
Loving someone, on the other hand, means getting over that preference that focuses on the physical characteristics of a person. Loving someone is looking beyond what your eyes see and instead considering what your heart feels.
6. Being in love makes you feel weak; loving someone makes you feel strong.
Being in love with someone makes you feel so conscious about yourself: your physical appearance, your mannerisms, and even how you talk and interact with that person. While it can be a good thing to notice these things about yourself, most people tend to focus on what their weaknesses and insecurities because they sometimes feel that they’re not worthy enough for that person.
Loving someone, on the other hand, makes you feel strong and confident regardless of your imperfection. Instead of making you feel that you’re not enough for your ideal person, you’d feel more empowered and inspired to be a better person for yourself and for the other person.
7. Being in love can become a selfish act; loving someone teaches you to be selfless.
Being in love with all the passionate and intense emotions that come with it can drive a person to be selfish, especially if they think that it’s the only way to keep that person in their life. They would do everything in their power to keep the relationship even if it means using force or deceitful acts just to make sure that they’re in control.
Loving someone, on the other hand, teaches you to be selfless not just towards that significant other but also towards other people. You become a better person for yourself and for others.
8. Being in love can be heartbreaking; loving someone can mend a broken heart.
Being passionately and fiercely in love with someone you barely know can eventually lead to a broken heart. This is because most relationships with passion and physical attraction at their base can easily be toppled down by the smallest challenges.
In contrary, loving someone can help a person put together their broken pieces and can help them heal their own brokenness. True love is a powerful force that can make all the pain go away – without consequences, without regrets.
9. Being in love involves risks; loving someone makes you feel safe and secure.
Being in love can be selfish and temporary – and thus, it involves huge risks like losing other people close to you or even losing your own self in the process of trying to keep that fire of love burning. It’s like betting everything to something uncertain and unstable, without thinking about what could happen if it ends.
Loving someone, on the other hand, makes you feel at peace with yourself. It will make you feel safe and secure because you know that you can still feel whole even if it ends. You’re not putting everything on the line because you don’t have to.
10. Being in love makes you fear change; loving someone makes you want to grow.
Being in love with someone makes you feel scared to change because you’re scared that the other person will not like the new you, just as how you don’t want them to be different from the idea of that person you have fallen in love with.
Loving someone, however, makes you want to be a better person, just as how you want them to grow. This is because you both know that you are still learning and growing to be the best version of yourselves.
Perhaps we can conclude that being in love with someone is just a part of the process to finally learning how to truly love a person. However, the only way to transition from the former to the latter is to realize that these are two different things that require different levels of effort, consistency, and understanding.