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June 4, 2019

WTF is Unconditional Love Anyway?

 

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Warning: naughty language ahead!

 

We tell our children, lovers, and friends that we love them no matter what. But, is that true?

Unconditional love is affection without any limitations—or rather, love without conditions.

This term is sometimes associated with true altruism or complete love. There are many ways of describing unconditional love, but most will agree that it is that type of love which has no bounds and is unchanging.

Ask yourself a few of these questions. I know personally I can work on shedding my ego, judgment, and selfish tendencies to love a little bit harder, what about you?

Are you loving someone less because they haven’t been intimate in a while?

Are you loving someone less because they have children and you can’t have a baby?

Are you loving someone less because they got a tattoo?

Are you loving someone less because they’re too depressed and not fun anymore?

Are you loving someone less because they aren’t as fun as they were when you met them?

Are you loving someone less because they stopped drinking and don’t want to rage with you anymore?

Are you loving someone less because they got the job you wanted?

Are you loving someone less because you don’t understand their anxiety?

Are you loving someone less because they don’t want to be your roommate anymore?

Are you loving someone less because they met their soulmate and you’re still alone?

Are you loving someone less because you stopped eating meat and they still want to?

Are you loving someone less because they decided to terminate a pregnancy and that was against your beliefs?

Are you loving someone less because they have your dream bikini body?

Are you loving someone less because they got a DUI?

Are you loving someone less because you don’t get along with their significant other?

Are you loving someone less because they don’t want to go to college?

Are you loving your new puppy less because it’s no longer a cute face behind glass and it chewed up your favorite shoes?

Are you loving your elderly dog less because it can no longer control its bladder?

Are you loving your elderly parents less because they need you to sit with them in the hospital and you were supposed to be on vacation?

Are you loving someone less because they make more money than you?

Are you loving someone less because of their physical appearance?

Are you loving someone less because you found porn on their computer or weed under their bed?

Are you loving someone less because they voted for a candidate you don’t support?

Are you loving someone less because they gained weight? Lost weight?

Whatever it may be, whatever is making you love less—this is not unconditional love. This love has a limit. This love is finite. This love is not real love.

All of these conditions are so trivial and at the end of the day they don’t really matter.

When you are on your deathbed, will you really reflect on these things? Will you really continue to stress about your kid’s shitty tattoo, dietary choices, or the shoes your dog destroyed? No. You won’t. The situations are endless, and they just don’t matter. But, we all need to work on this. We are all guilty of being selfish. We all have judged a lover, friend, or coworker by their car, apartment, clothing, job, or choice to use single-use plastic. Who fucking cares. Just love them.

You can be disappointed but never stop loving. Never stop teaching. Never stop caring.

When people act out, that is the time to hold space for them the most. When people cry out, that is the time to lend your shoulder. If things aren’t as good with your partner as they once were, that is the time to open the line of communication, go out dancing, or take a weekend staycation. If your dog acts out, that’s the time to adopt more patience, not put it up for adoption. Now is not the time to give up on the person you need to love unconditionally, it’s the time to love more than ever.

But, it’s so much easier to give up. If your child is acting out, love them. If your partner isn’t as happy as they used to be, love them.

Change things. Choose love. Choose work. Choose them.

If you really like a guy you went on a date with but his car is shitty or his current job isn’t ideal, try it out anyway. He could be your great love and your conditioning is holding you back. Your ego is holding you back.

A mother’s love, a husband’s love, a best friend’s love, or love for a pet should not be buried because things are currently difficult.

The tough times in your relationships will be temporary if you always flood that area of your life with unconditional love.

Now, I’m not saying you allow everything to fly simply because you love someone. Don’t allow anyone to physically or emotionally abuse you. Don’t stay in a loveless marriage that is helpless. Don’t keep a puppy you don’t intend on caring for; find someone who will love it. Don’t love people who don’t love you back. Don’t forgive the guy who ghosts you or cheats on you.

But what I have observed is people are so quick to love and so quick to leave. We are faced with many options and it’s almost too easy to walk out on people.

So, shed your ego. Stand by the people you love. Stand by your family, loved ones, pets, friends, and coworkers. They need you. They don’t need your conditions.

Know above anything and everything else, the love you give will come back to you abundantly and unconditionally. In the end, love is the only thing that really matters to us.

Now, go call the person you are loving less for a dumb reason and give them all the love you can. Your life will change for the better.

To my loved ones, I promise to shed my conditions and love you more than ever before.

 

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author: Candace Brooke

Image: Allesandro Valli / Flickr

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Editor: Julie Balsiger