And from past relationships, how are you able to tell the difference? How do you know you are in love as opposed to being in love with the idea of love? How do you separate the two? The reason I ask is because a friend of mine recently got engaged to someone she has been with for less than 8mths and I'm a bit concerned that what she is feeling isn't necessarily love but something else. I just don't want her to make a huge mistake that's all.
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Being in love with someone is to desire a deeper connection and intimacy with them. It will hopefully cause you to examine what kind of person they are and what you would have to do in order to attain that connection, not just how to ask them out, but how you can understand what makes them who they are, i. e., their values, their personality, their wants and needs, etc.
Being in love with the idea of love means that you're more interested in being in a relationship rather than being in a relationship with the right person. You focus more on yourself and what you want rather than how you would unite yourself with the other person.2