Love Addiction - By Popular Demand

Love Addiction

Its not everyday that I get more than 40 emails asking me to write an article on a common topic.
I thank Sunday Times for bringing to light the topic of Love addiction.
And I thank everyone of you who has sent me a request for the same.

Love Addiction - it actually sounds very cute.
The first time i heard the term, I thought it means height of love or romanticism... I didn't know, I was venturing into one of the darkest rooms of the human mind.

Love addiction is a dangerous addiction.. its a "sweet pain" that can make you emotionally, physically and sexually miserable.

What is Love addiction?
Its the increasingly prominent need of being in a relationship. It can be directed to one person, or to the feeling of being in a relationship.
(present in people who jump from one relationship to the next, finding it almost impossible to remain single).

A person is addicted to the "relationship".. to the feeling of "being in love"... No matter how disastrous the relationship might be for his/her emotional, physical, financial or sexual well-being.. the person will be in a relationship.

"Love addict" Sheetal (name changed) visited me 4yrs ago. She had been in a relationship for over last 7yrs. Her boyfriend used to physically abuse her, financially exploit her and sexually use her... While all her friends said she was with the wrong guy... Her mind said, he is perfect. She never saw anything wrong in him.
Even when she caught him cheating with her best friend, she felt he was "forced" into it.
It took a lot of counseling to help her battle this addiction. She finally got out and realized her mistake.

Why does Love addiction happen?
the main cause is -  growing up in a dysfunctional home where an individuals emotional needs for love and intimacy have not been met.

As a child if you are neglected and you are spending a lot of time alone, what happens is you lose the connect between rational and irrational relationship.
You spend a lot of time alone daydreaming and making up fantasies about the perfect relationship.
All this is happening inside your mind, and is bringing upon chemical changes within the brian structure.
The fantasies are mostly like a hindi movie.. they are full of  happiness, sadness, drama, action.. To fantasize gives a lot of pleasure.

As one grows older, he/she sees "lover" as a hero/heroine figure who will rescue them from loneliness.
Like a knight in shinning armour or wonder woman fighting against all odds to take care of them and help them come out of that "self-inflicted feeling of sadness".

As the relationship gets stronger, the fantasy world becomes more believable.
By this time they are so addicted to the fantasy that they cannot see the practical emotional, physical, financial and sexual problems they are dealing with.

If the fantasy is broken, like in case of any other addiction they go into a withdrawal..
They feel lonely, extreme uncontrolable anger.. the urge to get back into the comfort zone at any cost..
need to immediately find someone else who can create another fantasy in their mind.
always feel bad about themselves, having extreme anger against self.
Indulging in alcohol, smoking, drugs or sex to escape that feeling of abandonment.

How to know if you are a "love addict"?
simple questionaire -

Do you feel that you cannot live without your partner?
Des your whole world revolve around your partner?
Is your entire day decided by how your partner treats you?
Do you spend all the time caring about your partner?
Is your mind full of "movie like" thoughts about your relationship?

Common symptoms of Love addiction -
(7 or more are present in Love addicts)

1. Love addict caries a feeling of loneliness in his/her heart.

2. Attempts to this loneliness by showering someone else with all the love and attention that he/she never received.

3. Since most love addicts have fantasis as their main thought process... They look for partners whom they can "help" change. This satisfies their "hero" image.
So are most interested in Men/women who are battling sadness, are not perfect physically, have bad reputation, have extremely bad anger, have a lot of scope for improvement as per "social laws"

4. Love addicts are terribly scared of abandonment and will do anything to avoid it.

5. They go to any extent in showering love.. they will take all pains upon themselves, just so that they are not abandoned by the lover.

6. Love addicts easily take more than 50% of the responsibility, guilt and blame in the relationship and often does not attribute anything as being their partner’s fault.

Ex: He can’t help me with the kids because he is so tired after work.

7. They have very low self esteem, and always believe in criticizing others.

8. Their ‘helpful’ behavior is actually an attempt at controlling the  relationship.
They are very insecure of their relationship, get jealous very easily and may even show extreme anger reactions at the minimum provocation.

9. Always fantasise about how great their relationship will be. Have proper "hindi movies" regarding the same.

10. Unable to see the reality of their relationship and how unhappy they are.

11. A relationship addict is not interested in nice, emotionally present partners, as they find them ‘boring’ because such relationships have much less drama and chaos.
So they tend to gossip and spread negativity about those involved in such relationships.

Treatment -
1. Love Addiction - like any other addiction spread through the mind and affects the emotional well being of a person.

2. because its a deep seated addiction, that goes back to childhood .. its essential to consult a professional counselor / professional psychiatrist.

3. All of the "love addicts" require help to over-come this problem. Its nearly impossible to conquer it on their own.

4. Like any addiction it has proper withdrawal symptoms that can be experienced even if the partner is away for a single day.

5. Like any addiction there is a very high tendency to relapse.

6. Emotional pain is exagerrated and 100 times more than in other cases. This can lead to extreme anger.
In this extreme anger state an individual can commit suicide, kill someone or harm themselves permanently.

If you know a love addict... Get him help today....
Its important to be in love... but enjoy the feeling of love... don't get addicted to it.

For further assistance on this topic, you can CONTACT ME (all conversations are kept CONFIDENTIAL) -

Dr.Hemant Mittal
(Neuro-Psychiatrist, Mental Health and Sexual Health Healer,
Motivational Writer/Speaker and Counselor)

email -
website -

or visit my wellness clinic @-
address- 15, shreeji plaza, next to ice n spice restaurant, opposite seawoods station, seawoods (east)
Navi Mumbai

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