This is a guest post contributed to Stitch by Oscar Coles. Oscar is a relationship therapist who writes about relationships and marriage, and who has a growing online audience from his interesting and useful articles on the web.
Love can definitely do strange things to our minds and bodies, but how do you know if you’re not just having a crush or a passing infatuation with someone?
One thing’s for sure, you always have to be conscious of maintaining good sexual health and explore your options in keeping things safe from that perspective. But when it comes to more than just being physically attracted to someone, here is a look at some ways to decode those love signals you are getting.
Passion can be the path to true love
Every new relationship needs that initial spark of passion to kickstart the relationship, and it is the starting point for many where there is an unmistakable air of physical attraction.
It is not unusual to be totally consumed by this person who has just come into your life and the attraction can almost feel overwhelming for some of us.
No matter how old you are, your pheromones are playing a big part at this point of the fledgling relationship and you might even feel like there is an electrical surge running through your body, such is the strength of the passion you might be feeling for your partner.
This first stage of a new relationship where passion is definitely the key word and you have strong feelings of attraction, is difficult to maintain at such a level of intensity for a prolonged period of time, but there is no question that passion can set you on the path to true love.
Getting to know each other more intimately
Having enjoyed the electrically-charged moments of passion where you have followed your basic instincts and explored your physical compatibility, the next stage is a more intense level of intimacy, where you explore each other’s minds as well as your bodies.
Intimacy between you can most certainly initiate close feelings of attachment and the feeling that you have definitely made a meaningful connection, especially once the sex part has become more than just that initial physical attraction that drew you together in the first place.
This stage of your relationship, where intimacy creates an even stronger bond between the two of you, often seems to grow stronger as you spend more time together and start sharing more and more aspects of your lives with each other.
Intimacy is the foundation stone of a relationship and a route to true love, but it requires patience in order to build up a level of trust and reach a point where you feel completely safe and secure with your partner.
Everyone is different and therefore different levels of intimacy exist within different couples, but you will know if you have the sort of intimacy associated with truly loving someone, based on the closeness you enjoy with each other.
In it for the long haul
The three fundamental components that you will find when you look at a relationship where there is true love, are passion, intimacy and that all-important third piece of the puzzle, commitment.
There are many ways to define commitment in a relationship, but in basic terms, this is where you stay together through thick and thin and are able to survive any difficult situations, misunderstandings and pretty much anything else that the world wants to try and throw at you, because you are an unbreakable team and tackle these problems together.
Commitment involves many different things and it is one of the areas where marriages and partnerships in general, either get it and find true love between each other as a result, or it becomes an issue that come drive some people apart.
If you want to test whether you have really found true love with your partner, look at how committed to each other and the relationship you both are.
It is not an aspect of a relationship to take lightly, but the rewards are there for all to see and feel.
It’s the little things
True love can be experienced and demonstrated in lots of little ways too.
Being reminded of your partner by a particular scent is one example, finding the way they sleep as cute, or the fact that neither of you attempt to fill the silence, are all things that suggest you may well have found the true love of your life.
As anyone lucky enough to have experienced these emotions and inner-feelings knows, true love is much more than a passing infatuation, and certainly feels good when you know that you have found it.