Many people often confuse the terms love and friendship as they have different meanings to different people. Both love and friendship can coexist in the same relationship, but falling in love is different from friendship.
Friendship vs. Infatuation: While friendship is built over the years and you can choose your friends, infatuation happens without choice and you don’t know when you fall in love. Stable love relationships are often based on a good friendship because it is built over time, but it is said that moving from love to friendship is impossible. Well, changing relationships is totally up to the couple.
Sexual attraction: Although close friends are sexually attracted to each other, this type of attraction is intense when you are in love due to your true feelings. To satiate the desire for immediate sex, you may feel sexually attracted to your friend, but that would not last long. With friends, you won’t have that feeling of looking into each other’s eyes and walking hand in hand on the beach.
This is what separates love from friendship. You know you’re in love when you have special desires that you don’t experience in the company of friends.
Intensity of emotions: The intensity of emotions is much more than what we see in friendship. Sleepless nights, jealousy, anger, passionate desires, sexual desire, the desire to hug and kiss are emotions that are experienced in love and not in friendship. Although friendship can also have jealousy and anger, as mentioned above, the intensity is not that high.
The Test of Time: Psychologist Elaine Hatfield reports that love lasts between six months and 30 months, depending on cultural background and individual psychology. After two years or more, you begin to notice the ‘negative’ part in your partner that was otherwise not noticeable. Then the fights begin and you stand the test of time or fail. On the contrary, friendship can last for decades. Many romantic relationships end when couples discover they haven’t built the solid foundation of friendship needed to continue the relationship after love fades.
For love to last, affection and friendship are necessary. Love fades but what keeps them together is sympathy and their bond as friends.
Idealization: When one falls in love, they idealize the other as possessing qualities that they imagine in their ideal partner. This happens regardless of whether or not he has those qualities. When this idealization is broken, the relationship goes through a time of trial. Few are able to carry it forward while others fall apart. That is the reason why friendship lasts longer because as friends, we focus on what a person really is and there is no idealization.
Possessiveness and fidelity: Romantic love is characterized by possessiveness and fidelity. Lovers demand exclusive time and emotional support from their partners. Friends are not usually jealous of third party friendships, but in the case of love, both partners do not like to bond with another person. The desire to be “the one” remains in romantic love.
So if you were confused between love and friendship, you must have received the answer. And if you are still confused about whether or not to make your friend your lover, you should think about it and read the article one more time to get your answer.