In trying to understand why some people are scared of falling in love, I learned of a new phobia. It is called philophobia. In simple terms, it is the fear of falling in love.
Many people would think it is ridiculous to fear to fall in love. For them, what is the point of being afraid of something so divine? Something so beautiful? Something that makes you feel completely alive? Something that gives you a million reasons to be happy and blessed in a thousand ways?
With all that, where is the logic of being scared of falling in love?
That said, understanding people’s motivations for doing some things are mostly a fool’s errand. There is simply no black and white prescription for human behavior.
For instance, a person might consider suicide when faced with certain problems in life. On the flip side, another person might use the same problems as a springboard to a better life; a reason to keep on living.
However, it is clear that you should only be afraid of something you know and have had dealings with. This makes it somewhat strange that some people who have never loved are also scared of falling in love.
For this set of people, their philophobia is mostly about what they heard from others. Or what they saw happened to couples who made themselves miserable in the name of love.
This third-hand excuse as a reason to be scared of falling in love says more about the individual. These are very careful people who want everything to be just right before making a move.
They never take risks and because of that, life tends to be dull for them. They love it that way though.
So why are some regular folks scared of falling in love?
1. Falling in love is surrendering control
We all want to have complete control over our lives. Left to our designs, every aspect of our day would be on a schedule. To a large extent, we’ve succeeded in controlling many areas of our lives.
Falling in love means you have to cede much of that control and power. Real love demands that you let another person into your life and trust them with your most cherished secrets. That is a lot to give of ourselves.
This is the reason why the greatest hurt we experience come from the people we love the most. Falling in love makes us very vulnerable and open to getting hurt.
Some people would rather not go there. They won’t mind a relationship, but they would never go the whole nine yards. Falling in love, to them, is a luxury they can afford not to indulge in.
2. Afraid of history repeating itself
Some memories are so etched in our brains nothing can erase them. Many of the memories are of the hurt we had experienced in a past relationship. Obviously, only people we had gone down this route would be afraid of falling in love again.
Even though all relationships are a mix-match of the good, bad, beautiful and ugly moments, hurtful and ugly episodes stick more in our minds. It is that pain that people want to avoid going through again.
These hurtful memories are strong enough to make a person wary of ever truly falling in love again.
3. Can another person honestly love us?
Some people struggle to accept who they really are. They keep trying to reinvent themselves or their identity to become acceptable to others and be loved by them.
This feeling can be as a result of traumatic childhood experiences from cruel and abusive parents. It can also be as a result of seeing others being treated badly for not meeting up certain standards.
Over time, the psyche becomes the person’s worst enemy. Questions like, ‘Am I good enough to be loved?’ turns to ‘I’m not lovable the way I am.’
So instead of focusing on how to happy in life, the person is focused on making themselves acceptable to others.
Unfortunately, the effort needed to fall in love takes a big hit.
4. Afraid of taking the next level in personal growth
Having a relationship and falling in love is sometimes a loud statement of independence and growth. The demands of a new, committed relationship means we have to break old ties.
For some, the idea of relegating close friends and family to the background is too much to handle. They would rather stick to what they are used to than committing to somebody and start building a new life.
5. They can’t reciprocate
There are people who profess a sort of apathy for others. To them, no matter how much they try, they can’t give as much of themselves as is required.
The main point being they are sure they would not be able to reciprocate that feeling of love adequately. And because it is in their nature, they think it is unfair to whoever is in love with them.
As far as they are concerned, the love would be too one-sided and it is something they are not comfortable with.
For individuals like this, admitting they are scared of falling in love is redundant. They simply feel they have nothing to give. It is the way nature made them.
So, are you one of those scared of falling in love? What are your reasons and are you comfortable that you are afflicted with philophobia?