Why We Go Off People Who Like Us #
Ostensibly, we all want love, but oddly, one of the hardest things to do is not hold it against people when they do actually turn around and reciprocate our feelings.
- ostensilby (adj. formal) - appearing or claiming to be one thing when it is really something else
- oddly (adv.) - in a strange or surprising way
- reciprocate (verb. formal) - to share the same feelings as someone else, or to behavein the same way as someone else
It can be immensely hard not to think that those who offer us love are in some ways weak, mistaken, needy, craven, or just defective.
- immensely (adv.) - extremely
- craven (adj. formal) - extremely cowardly (= not brave)
- defective (adj.) - Something that is defective has afault in it and does not work correctly.
It can feel a lot easier when love was unrequited.
- unrequited (adj. formal, humorous) - If love that you feel for someone is unrequited, it is not felt in the same way by the other person.
Our primary preoccupation was a thrilling dread that the admired person hadn’t even noticed us.
- preoccupation (noun.) - an idea or subject that someonethinks about most of the time
- thrill (verb.) - to make someone feel very excitedand pleased
- dread (noun. U) - a strong feeling of fear or worry
We’re tempted to say we’ve got them wrong. They can’t be the admirable people we thought they were .
- be tempted (verb.) - to want something or to want to do something
Their affection seems suspicious, incomprehensible, and a touch repulsive, because at some level, this isn’t what we’re used to.
- affection (noun. U/S) - a feeling of liking for a person or place
- suspicious (adj.) - feeling doubt or no trust in someone or something
- incomprehensible (adj.) - impossible or extremely difficult tounderstand
- repulsive (adj.) - extremely unpleasant or unacceptable
It doesn’t tally with our view of ourselves .
- tally (verb.) - to match or agree with something else
Love can be hard to receive, when we’re not fundamentally convinced of our own lovability.
- fundamentally (adv.) - in a basic and important way
- convince (verb.) - to persuade someone or make someone certain
We spend our time seeking out those who can make us suffer in ways that feel familiar and it becomes natural to assume that a kind lover has missed something, and perhaps then try to behave in disgusting ways, just to make sure they understand we’re really not who they thought we were, and that they will therefore leave us in painful, but somehow psychologically gratifying ways.
- therefore (adv.) - for that reason
- psychological (adj.) - relating to the human mind andfeelings
- gratify (verb.) - to please someone, or to satisfy a wishor need
But we have to allow ourselves to entertain another option.
- entertain (verb. formal) - to hold something in your mind or to be willingto consider or accept something
Perhaps it’s a sign that they’ve seen something in us which poignantly and tragically, we don’t yet quite see in ourselves, and have never been allowed to believe in by figures in our past, that we are deserving of love.
- poignantly (adj.) - causing or having a very sharp feeling ofsadness
- tragically (adj.) - very sad, often involving death and suffering
There is hope in all this, hope that we can come to trust our lovers more than we trust our own first nervous self-destructive impulses.
- self-destruct (verb.) - If a machine or weapon self-destructs, itdestroys itself, especially in a way that isplanned
- impulse (noun. C) - a sudden strongwish to do something
We can interpret their love not as a sign of their delusion or weakness, but as evidence of an inherent lovability in ourselves to which our past histories have blinded us, yet to which their love and tenderness can now awaken us.
- interpret (verb.) - to decide what the intended meaning of something is
- delusion (noun. C/U) - belief in something that is not true
- inherent (adj.) - existing as a natural or basic part of something
- tender (adj.) - gentle, loving, or kind
We don’t invariably have to hold it against others when they see some point in us.
- invariably (adv.) - always