It can be difficult to know the difference between a crush and love. When you meet someone and you are overcome with feelings, how do you know what they mean? It is fairly common for someone to obsess over a new flame and decide that it must be love, when, in fact, it could easily be a crush or infatuation. Read here to learn about the psychology of these feelings.
The first thing to know is that love is feelings that you have for someone, but backed up with an emotional connection. It’s deeper than a crush, and you will want good things to happen to the person you love.
A crush is an intense obsession with someone, based on surface information such as looks, a job, or even the fact that you go to the same coffee shop. Fortunately, you can look at the following fundamental differences between crush vs. love and determine for yourself which one you have.
#1. How Long Did It Take to Develop Feelings?
One fundamental difference between having a crush and falling in love is in how long it takes to develop feelings. When you have a crush on someone, the feelings come on fast. Sometimes it is called “love at first sight.” You meet someone, and you are immediately smitten.
When you love someone, you will have spent time developing a deeper emotional connection based on mutual respect and shared values. The only way to really know that you share a connection is through shared experiences together.
#2. Do You Put the Object of Your Love/Crush up on a Pedestal?
Another great factor to help you determine whether you have a crush or are feeling love (and vice versa) is to determine whether you are putting the person up on a pedestal. Is he or she perfect in your eyes? Do you find yourself using superlative adjectives every time you describe him or her? When you have a crush, the other person often appears to be flawless and the absolute gold standard in relationships.
When you love someone, you don’t really think in those terms. You love the person for who he or she is, the good and the bad alike. It’s more about feeling emotionally safe and connected than it is about being perfect.
#3. How Jealous Are You?
Jealousy is a sure sign of a crush. Feelings of jealousy come from a place of not feeling as though you are able to trust the object of your affection. You should never have to feel that way, and it is a sure sign that it is a crush and not love. When you love someone, you have established a connection that is founded in trust and respect. You will be less prone to irrational thoughts and concerns because the feelings you have are deeper and more genuine.
#4. Are You Attracted to Other People?
Do you find yourself keeping your options open? Are you drawn to others as well as your new flame? If you find that this is true, you have a crush. When you have a crush, it may be exciting and send butterflies through your insides, but it isn’t fulfilling. Love is different. You will not even notice if there is another person looking at you, no matter how attractive he or she may be. Love leaves you wanting to share fun times and quiet dinners with your one and only.
#5. Do You Cancel on Friends and Blow Off Prior Commitments?
When you have a crush on someone, you might find yourself feeling like you have to cancel plans to be available for the person. This is a result of insecurity because a crush is founded in idealism, not in reality. When you love someone, you will never feel pressured to make choices. Your partner will respect you and want you to keep your commitments, and you will not feel as though you have to sacrifice yourself to keep his or her interest.
#6. Are Your Feelings Hot and Cold?
If you find that you adore someone one minute and despise them the next, you probably have a crush. Crushes are rooted in an unrealistic image of something the other person symbolizes, and when he or she doesn’t live up to that image, your feelings might drop fast. On the other hand, when you love someone, your feelings are steady. You do not need to question how you feel because you might be annoyed with him or her, but you never question your feelings of love.
#7. Is Your Relationship Purely Physical?
When you have a crush, the relationship emphasizes the physical connection more than any kind of emotional connection. It is more about feeling attractive and being attracted to the person. If you find yourself feeling uncomfortable unless you are dressed up and put together, you might have a crush. When you love someone, you will have a sense of comfort that is not based on physical attraction alone. Love is grounded in that special connection that goes far beyond the physical connection.
#8. Do You Bicker and Quarrel Over Little Things?
All couples have disagreements, but do you find yourself quarreling over the little things? When you have a crush, it is more likely that this will happen. Crushes give you a false sense of expectation, and when the other person doesn’t meet your expectations, you may be annoyed. When you love someone, you love them for who they are, and you respect them, even when they disagree with you. You may have disagreements, but they won’t be petty and unkind.
#9. Do You Hold Grudges?
When your partner makes a mistake, do you find that you just can’t let it go? This is a sign that you have a crush. When you love someone, you are able to forgive and move on. When two people develop deeper feelings for one another, they may still disagree, but love allows for understanding and forgiveness.
#10. Is Your Relationship Focused on Desire or Friendship?
This is important because a crush is rooted in and focused on desire. You may have completely different interests and tastes, but you both desire to be together. When you love someone, the focus is on friendship. Two people who love each other share common interests, and even when they don’t they work together because they care about each other’s happiness. Take a look here at the stages we go through when we fall in love.
When you meet someone and start a relationship, it can be hard to know if what you have is the real thing. It can be a bit of an emotional roller coaster, but if you are meant to be, it will settle down rather quickly.
Having a crush can be a lot of fun, but it is important to nip it in the bud once it runs its course. Knowing the signs of a crush vs. love can help you make the right choices and move on with your life.