Pathological love is different from other conditions like dependence disorder or borderline personality disorder because dysfunctional behaviour is limited to romantic love. Love addiction can result from an underlying mood disorder, impulse control disorder, or obsessive-compulsive personality disorder.
Love addiction can be present in various forms, and our skilled counsellors are trained to identify if you or your loved one has a love addiction. However, some of the main diagnostic criteria are a compulsion to replace the lost love relationship immediately with another and feeling alone and desperate when not in a relationship. Interestingly, like other addictions, love addiction is real and can show up in neuro-imaging studies showing a neurochemical component.
What is “Love Addiction”?
Love addiction is an unhealthy obsession with love or being in love, which causes a person to behave in ways that are harmful to them and/or their loved ones. Love addiction is not the same as being in love, nor is it the same as having a healthy, loving relationship. It is important to understand the difference because love addiction can lead to co-dependent relationships, which are harmful to both parties involved.
A person with love addiction may feel they cannot live without their partner and may become unmanageable, jealous, and possessive. They may also feel unworthy and have low self-esteem. Love addiction can lead to obsessive thoughts and behaviours, as well as depression and anxiety. If you think you may be suffering from love addiction, it is important to seek help from a qualified mental health professional.
What Causes Love Addiction?
The root cause of love addiction is often low self-esteem. A person with low self-esteem may feel they are not worthy of love and may turn to others for validation. This can lead to co-dependent relationships, which are harmful to both parties involved.
Love addiction can also be caused by a traumatic event, such as the loss of a loved one. This can lead to an unhealthy obsession with love or being in love. It is important to seek help from a qualified mental health professional if you think you may be suffering from love addiction.
Love Addiction: Signs and Symptoms
The following are some signs and symptoms of love addiction:
- Compulsive thinking about love or being in love
- Obsessive behaviour in pursuit of love or being in love
- Inability to control or limit behaviours related to love.
- Continuing to pursue a relationship even when it is harmful
- Feeling empty, alone, or hopeless without a romantic relationship?
- Mood swings that are extreme in relation to a romantic relationship
- Having low self-esteem or feeling unworthy of love.
- I need constant reassurance from others.
- Being dependent on another person
Treatment for Love Addiction
Love addiction is treated with a combination of therapy and medication. Therapy can help you understand the root cause of your love addiction and learn how to cope with it. Medication can help you manage your symptoms and make it easier to stick to your treatment plan.
Freeman House Recovery specialises in the treatment of love addiction. Our skilled counsellors are trained to help you understand the root cause of your addiction and develop a treatment plan that is right for you. We offer a variety of therapies, such as cognitive behavioural therapy, which can help you learn how to cope with your addiction.
If you think you may be suffering from love addiction, seek help from a qualified mental health professional. Treatment can help you manage your symptoms and live a healthy, happy life.