The idea of unconditional love was given to us from the first time we learned of stories and fairytales. It sounds beautiful, but it’s not so easy in real life.
Loving someone unconditionally will make your life better, more beautiful, and fulfilled. If it makes you happier, why should you not? However, you should be careful about who you choose to love unconditionally. At the other end of it, choosing the wrong person can make your life a disaster.
Let’s see how you know whether it’s the right thing to love a specific person unconditionally or not:
1. You’ve Healed Yourself Internally
Most of us, irrespective of how healthy our childhood was or how beautiful our past was, hold some or the other form of trauma.
Loving someone unconditionally requires you to give selflessly, and to give selflessly requires you to be at peace with yourself and all that you have.
It is only when you genuinely feel satisfied with yourself and your life would you be able to provide for another without wanting or expecting anything in return. Transactions are easy, but gifts – not so much.
In short, if you are looking to love someone unconditionally, you must first love yourself that way.
Otherwise, choosing to love someone unconditionally will become torture, and deep within yourself, you will continue to feel a substantial lack of love.
2. You’ve Trusted Them Evidentially
As adults, we all are aware of the dangers that lurk in the outside world. Sometimes, bad things will happen to you even when the other person does not intend to do so.
Other times, people will intentionally take advantage of you as and when available. Before you choose to love someone, you have to ensure that it’s safe to love them unconditionally.
Since loving unconditionally focuses so much on giving without expecting anything in return, you have to ensure that this person has good intentions for you and will not exploit you.
Now, people can seem nice but make sure they have truly earned your trust through actions and not words.
Words can often be deceptive, but you would not want someone to break you in a way that it breaks your trust in the world.
3. They Respect You
To love unconditionally does not mean to expect “nothing” in return. As a person, you deserve and must expect basic respect at all times.
Often, when people have something given to them without having to pay for it, they tend to take it for granted.
They begin to feel as if you owe it to them. It would be best if you never allowed someone to treat you disrespectfully.
Most importantly, loving them unconditionally will not buy you respect from them either. Give your love to someone who deserves, respects, and appreciates it.
4. You Have Defined Boundaries
All love comes with boundaries. You should only decide to love someone with all your might after you have defined your boundaries.
Just because you love them does not mean that they are allowed to do whatever they want to with you.
Boundaries can come in many forms: How they treat you, how inclusive they can get in your personal life, the possessions you wish to and do not wish to share, what conversations are appropriate to have and much more.
Setting boundaries helps save your love from being exploited, you from being tortured and used, and keep your relationship with that person long and healthy.
Else, loving someone unconditionally before setting some ground rules can leave you in a vulnerable state.
5. You Can Communicate Freely
All of this fuss with love – how would you deal with it if you can’t express yourself thoroughly with a person?
It’s like a domino – If you can’t communicate freely, there’s a high chance you don’t trust them completely, which is most likely because they’ve broken your trust in some way more than once.
To establish the basis of love, you must be able to talk to them and let them know how you feel. Otherwise, there’s a good chance your “unconditional love” is either just a show or being used.
6. You Feel Secure, With or Without Them
Security is vital when it comes to love. It is the defining factor behind the longevity of your relationship with another.
Since unconditional love is about having very few basic expectations, you must feel secure within yourself.
Insecurities lurking in your mind imply that you will be constantly bothered by what the other person is up to. Loving someone unconditionally while being insecure in yourself is quite a task.
It will stir in you a desire to give more and more, which will drain you while constantly feeling inadequate. The worst part is: Your “unconditional” love starts becoming a means for you to seek constant validation.
7. You Are Complete in Yourself
Most of us seek comfort and validation from those around us. Many people think that loving someone else will complete you, which isn’t exactly true.
If you don’t feel complete in yourself, you’ll have a lot of trouble giving and not expecting it back.
You might fall to the extent of demanding it back or feeling like they owe you something for loving them “unconditionally”.
But when you are complete in yourself, you don’t want anything more – you already have it all. It helps keep your love healthy and balanced for the other person.
8. You Feel Deeply Connected
To be able to love someone unconditionally requires plenty of self-development and work. It’s best to keep it for the special ones.
If you go around loving every other person unconditionally, you expose yourself to plenty of danger.
There’s no better way than to trust your gut. If you feel deeply connected to a person and have a strong desire to give as much as you can to them – by all means, you should do so.
Deep connections are rare to find. However, make sure that it is certain and not just temporary sparks flying around.
9. They Treat It as A Gift
Like respect, appreciation and acknowledgment are basic expectations you must always keep.
When you give anything to this person, how do they react? Your unconditional love for them is a gift, and it should be treated as such.
Choose to love someone who is aware of this. They understand that you willingly choose to give it to them and truly appreciate it with their heart. They must be aware of how rare it is to find.
That doesn’t mean you should feel entitled to being put on a pedestal for the love you give, but rather that your love does not go completely unnoticed and is worth the effort.
10. It Doesn’t Affect Your Individuality
Has loving someone changed how you feel about yourself before? Then maybe you’ve got some digging to do within yourself. Love someone unconditionally only if it doesn’t change who you are as a person.
While some change for the better is always good, it should come from a place of conscious decision-making by you for the best.
Your sense of identity has to be independent of the person. How they take your love, or whether they choose to reciprocate or not, should have zero impact on you or your life.
Nothing they do will ever change your understanding of your own self – only then can your love truly take the form of unconditionality.
1. It Leaves You Feeling Drained
Loving someone unconditionally is so much work that, for most people, it can leave them feeling drained.
You can only offer from your cup when it’s overflowing. But when you have your own limited supply in life and are still striving for abundance, you should first focus on yourself.
It may sound a little metaphorical, but it applies to every area of life – whether it be finance, emotions, or physical work.
If loving someone unconditionally will make you feel like you’re at a loss or it exhausts your mind and body, it’s best to avoid it.
2. They Abuse Your Love
It’s much easier to abuse unconditional love than the kind of love that puts up certain limitations. This is why it’s essential for you not to give it to an abuser.
Would you hand over your money to someone in need or who spends it on lavish things they don’t need?
Or would you go out of your way to do chores for someone who is overburdened with their work or someone who just lazes out on the couch?
We’re so careful with where we put our energy that those answers are apparent. Then, why give your love to someone who’d use it recklessly and worse – use it to hurt you?
3. You Are Struggling with Trust Issues
Most adults have been hit by disappointment, betrayal, or been lied to in one way or another. Trust issues are common but need to be dealt with.
If you feel like you still have an issue with trusting people, precisely this person, you should let go of the idea of loving them unconditionally.
When you have trust issues, you make things harder for yourself.
You may successfully offer your love, but you will constantly drive yourself insane with the thoughts of them abusing it – even if they show no such signs.
Constantly building scenarios in your head will make you believe in what isn’t real, which is incredibly unhealthy for your mind and state of being.
4. You Have Low Self-Esteem
The thing with having low self-esteem is that you are very likely to self-sabotage things for yourself at any opportunity you get. Now, it doesn’t have to be that mellow, and you can build it up slowly.
But if you’re fighting it, putting yourself up in such a situation will only delay this process or make it harder for you.
If the person you offer your love to does not reciprocate, you might just end up seeing it as a cue to fuel your negative thinking patterns and take the blame onto yourself.
Making the other person feel guilty for making you feel this way isn’t a great way out of it, either. And a love earned like that isn’t unconditional or faithful for sure.
5. You Feel Guilty Without It
If you feel obliged to love someone unconditionally, then you most certainly shouldn’t be doing it.
If this person is gaslighting you or making you feel like you owe them unconditional love – it’s not fair to you, and you should walk away immediately.
You don’t owe anyone that kind of love. Period. You only choose to give it out of your own heart.
Past experiences, especially traumatic ones, can guilt you into feeling that you cannot demand anything from partners or friends and must always offer unconditional love.
That is an unhealthy approach and will also leave you open and vulnerable to being used.
6. You Were Recently Heartbroken
No matter how strong, optimistic, confident, and loving you are and have been as a person – heartbreak is always a blow to you.
If you think you’re still okay, there’s a good chance you’re suppressing your emotions. These emotions will eventually resurface and burden the other person and yourself.
If you’ve recently been heartbroken, you should avoid thinking about giving away unconditional love and instead focus on your own self – at least for a while.
If not, your past heartbreak will keep flashing and coming in between your love for other people.
7. It Makes You Feel Stuck
Unconditional love is not binding. If loving someone makes you feel like it is holding you back – then you shouldn’t do it. Love should not hinder your own personal growth.
Sometimes, loving someone can stop you from taking steps that are better for you as well as them. It can also cause you to stay in situations that do you more harm than good – such as abusive environments.
You should especially avoid it if loving one person unconditionally makes you feel like you cannot love another. It should not affect your other relationships or make you feel tied to one person.
8. It Makes You Feel Insecure
When you give to people, you may end up overthinking about it. You may constantly be bugged by the feelings of what if – what if they don’t love you back? What if you give all your love and are left alone?
Every time they hang out with someone else, you end up feeling bad, empty or wonder too much about whether you just can’t give enough to keep that person – all of which is bad for your own mental health.
If you think that loving a person will put you in a constant pattern of thought or make you question your own self-worth, then you should avoid unconditional love.
9. You Neglect Yourself
Some people simply adopt a habit of neglecting themselves and constantly choosing to love others unconditionally. This can be seen in many forms.
You may never express your desires – whether it’s about eating at your favorite restaurants or telling someone they hurt you because it will upset them.
You may help others when you yourself are overburdened, burned out, or dealing with issues. Most importantly, you can’t honestly say no.
For such people, unconditional love can suck the life out of them. It is always essential to first take care of yourself before you can do it for another.
10. You Keep Having Second Thoughts
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Trust your gut. You’ve crossed out everything and think you’re ready to love someone unconditionally. But something about it just doesn’t ring right.
Maybe you’re scared. Maybe you’re nervous. Or it’s just something else. Either way, if you doubt yourself about it constantly, give it a pause.
Deep down, most of us know the truth of a situation. Your gut will say no if it’s not the right thing to do, particularly in matters of love.
In a gist, unconditional love takes time, work, and energy. To love another unconditionally, you have to first prepare your own self as a giver and choose the right person as a taker.
And when it falls into place, it can end up building one of the most awe-striking relationships you could have ever been in. And if you’re lucky, it might just be reciprocated and bring ten times the joy.
No effort goes unrewarded in life anyway – sometimes just in ways you won’t expect.