Conditional love is something we are all guilty of sometimes. So what exactly is conditional love, and what are the signs of it? Here in this article, I would like to discuss some examples of conditional love. In my research, I found them as follows:
1. Transactional Love
Buying expensive gifts to win someone over is an example of transactional love. It is all about giving to someone to get something back. You might help someone out when requested, only to want something back later on. You count all the things you have done for people and feel like in return it is not received.
A great way to avoid transactional love is to give from the heart, and not to overly give. If you give more than you want, it is transactional love and you feel left out.
Anything given to your specific person will be from the heart and that is worth so much more than giving in overflow with conditions to it.
2. Disrespect of Boundaries
Every person has different boundaries on what they are willing to accept. A great sign of conditional love is to overstep people’s boundaries. If you feel like your desires and wishes are more important than other people’s feelings, this might not create the love you desire.
You could be on both ways of this spectrum, and if you feel like you have trouble setting your own healthy boundaries, make sure to go back into your body and align with your feelings. What feels right for you is worth more than what feels right for other people. Do not let yourself be overruled and downgrade what makes you feel uncomfortable. You are not stuck to other people and pleasing others to receive is a form of conditional love.
Control comes from a place of fear. A fear of abandonment or a fear of losing something valuable to you. When you control someone you love, you give them no freedom of their own. They have to obey your thoughts and this is making the other person submissive with a lack of self-worth.
You can be on both sides of this conditional love that is created by two people and often identifies with a codependent structure. One person cannot live without the approval of the other. A true sign of conditional love is to control the other person into submission. However, truly often a self-fulfilling prophecy is in place, and what you so fear losing by controlling it will eventually leave.
Controlling something and/ or being controlled are clear signs of force that are derived out of fear. Giving each other trust, space, and freedom will allow you to fully experience unconditional love. If you are in these dynamics in love, look within yourself what you can do to change these relationship patterns.
4. Superficial Love
If you dress up the way I want to you will be my perfect match. This is a clear sign of superficial love. You like the way the person is presenting themselves and how that would make you look to the outside world.
A person can look good from the outside, but that doesn’t mean you would be a great and compatible match. Get to know someone from the inside, so you love every aspect of them and they will become more attractive day by day. Not saying that attraction doesn’t have any influence at all, but only choosing based on looks may disappoint you in the long run.
5. Lack of Trust
Trusting someone in a relationship, whether romantic or on a friendly basis, you have to trust each other. When there is a lack of trust, it might be hard to love someone unconditionally. Giving someone your trust is not something that you should do right away. But if after a long time, you do not trust someone, you have to ask yourself “Is this the right person for me”? Or “Why do I not trust people?”
Maybe you have to go back to your childhood when you felt unsafe and you couldn’t trust the people that should have been there for you.
6. Lack of Communication
If you do not feel comfortable speaking the truth with someone, you could build up resentment. You feel you can’t fully express yourself as you hold off your feelings to please another. If you can’t express yourself the way you want to via communication, the other person can’t fully love you for who you are either.
Open the channels of communication no matter how difficult it might be and express yourself in the most authentic ways. The way you feel is valid and you can be loved for exactly the way you are.
7. Putting the responsibility of happiness on another
If you feel like other people are responsible for your happiness, conditional love is created. Why is it you can’t fully be happy? Do you think that being in a relationship is going to change the way you feel about yourself?
It is important to ask yourself these questions before you blame other people for being unhappy. What decision can you make today that will fulfill you? If you feel like you are not living in your own authentic alignment it could be because you are trying to please another. Start small and be grateful for the small things in your life. From there you can build on bigger things. Without proper grounding in your security and happiness, you can’t build up the rest of your life.
8. It is never good Enough
You could feel like you are not good enough no matter what you do. To receive the love you so crave, you might get out of your way for other people. The more you try, the less you receive. If this is you, it is time to center yourself in your body and let give and take flow naturally through your body.
You are good enough to receive love, and when you know this you can easily receive the unconditional love you so crave for. It has to start with you, loving yourself and your heart without conditions. You are perfect as you are, no matter what others think of you. You are a creation of God and that is perfection on its own.
Comparing Conditional with Unconditional love
So, to conclude, what is the difference between conditional and unconditional love? Can you love someone just the way they are? Can you love yourself for just the way you are? If you can start from these questions you will see that if you can love yourself with your flaws, you can accept them from other people as well.
If you feel you are in a trauma-bonded relationship with someone, it is time to read these signs and think about how healthy your relationships truly are. Stand in your power and know that your feelings matter. You know when a relationship is based on conditions. Be your authentic self and see if the other person can love you that way. If not, you might just as well be in an unconditional relationship.
Conclusion 8 Signs of Conditional Love
Conditional love is often characterized by behaviors like transactional exchanges, disrespect of boundaries, control, superficiality, lack of trust, poor communication, and the outsourcing of personal happiness. These patterns typically arise from deep-seated fears and insecurities, leading to relationships that are unfulfilling and unsustainable.
In contrast, unconditional love is rooted in acceptance, trust, and genuine care for another’s well-being without expecting anything in return. Recognizing and addressing the signs of conditional love is crucial for cultivating healthier, more authentic relationships. Embracing self-love and acceptance is a key step towards breaking free from conditional love and nurturing truly unconditional relationships.