One word Four letters. They both start with the letter “L,” but the two words couldn’t be more different. At the same time, however, they’re incredibly difficult to distinguish between, especially when caught up in the heat of a new romance. Have any guesses on what we’re talking about here? Love and Lust. You may feel confused about either one (or both) while exploring a relationship with someone. Relationships are difficult to navigate, especially as a young person at campus. So when the big “L” word is thrown around, things can become quite tricky. So, is that big L word love, or lust? The simple definition of love is wanting the best for the other person. Lust, on the other hand also equates to infatuation and passionate love. To better explain it to a poor chap attending a “university” in Kabalagala, Infatuation is about what can you do for me (will you give me some?), and love is about how much can I give to you. One is all about taking, not necessarily receiving, and the other is more about giving.”
Sound familiar? If you’re still unsure about what exactly you’re feeling for your partner, here are four huge signs that the scale is tipped to lust rather than love.
1. You don’t really know each other
Your chemistry is insane, and the feeling when you two meet is absolutely electric. You know you feel something for this person but do you really even know who this person is, and vice versa? You might want to ask yourself these questions to really understand your feelings. For example, you probably know some things about your partner, such as what course they offer at campus, what their favorite musicians are or even their favorite rolex joint. However, if your communication doesn’t really crack that surface and dive deeper to a better understanding of each other, then lust may be the answer why. If you’re not sharing your personal experiences and problems, and that person has also set these boundaries, then you’re not in a relationship where you’re actually mutually supporting each other. If you don’t picture yourself ever opening up to this person and letting down those barriers, then the relationship doesn’t align with the foundations of love.
2. The relationship is purely sex-oriented
Whether you’re in a relationship of love or lust, it’s not uncommon for them both to start off very physical. After all, seeking out new partners and beginning these relationships is by being attracted to one another physically. However, if your relationship is just physical, then it’s not necessarily love. Lust is a physical desire. It is when you only “love” your partner before the orgasm. After that they’re just some stranger bothering you. Am not saying sex is bad, its only bad when that’s all there is between you and it doesn’t transform and morph into another level. This is when the relationship lacks substance in all other areas of love. And while there’s nothing wrong with having a loving relationship that’s all about sex, there’s also no shame in exploring your desires and pursuing your feelings in lust, if that’s what both you and your partner want. That’s where Friends With Benefit(FWB) come in. Personally, I wouldn’t discourage two people from being in a relationship of lust, as long as they recognize that’s all it is. If two people say, ‘look, I’m obsessed with you, I just want to have lots of great sex,’ and the other person agrees to it, fine. Just beware of it becoming dangerous where it starts to drown you and completely takes over your life. It can become an addiction.
3. Your relationship doesn’t evolve
Sex is actually essential in a relationship. It can make or break it. So It’s bad if the sex side of the relationship doesn’t evolve into something more. While a huge sign of lust is that your relationship relies on the sex, another sign is that the relationship doesn’t eventually evolve into compassionate love.
Think of lust as a fire. Being infatuated with someone and pursuing a passionate love may start quickly just as a fire would, and the flames may seem bright when it’s fueled with passion, but they’ll soon fizzle out if that’s its only fuel. You should note that we can’t keep up that level of intensity (of sex) for months or years. Hence meaning the relationship can’t be controlled by only sex because sex won’t last forever. Living your life throughout campus and beyond means learning, meeting new friends, finding jobs, and maybe eventually marrying and having children (if that’s a part of your plan, not mine though), so if you don’t see yourself potentially living through these challenges and making these commitments to your partner, then it’s probably not love.
4. You’re only internally focused
The biggest difference between these two lies in your motivation and intent. Are you seeking to fill your own desires, or are you looking to give to someone else? The difference between lust and love is that lust is internally focused. “How do I feel when I’m with you? What can you do for me? How great can you make me feel?” If these are questions that you’re asking yourself when with your partner, you’re only focused on your own needs. Lust is primarily about satisfying your own desires; love is more about how much you can give to the other person. Lust is about receiving pleasure; love is about giving to the other person. If your thought process is, “I need to get all my desires and needs met, and as long as they’re met, I don’t care about anything else,” then you’re experiencing lust. “And you don’t really care about the other person, as long as they give you what you need. That’s not love.”
So what’s the bottom line? It can be difficult to admit it to yourself, especially if you’re really passionate about your partner, it’s important not to confuse lust for love. While it’s extremely difficult to distinguish between lust and love, especially in the earlier stages of the relationship, hopefully, these signs will point you in the right direction.