These are two very distinct feelings that have always been confused with one another. In reality, they are totally different. This post helps you decide which is which; helps you know for sure the difference between love and infatuation. Let’s start with the basics.
What is Infatuation?
The term, infatuation, is defined as a strong feeling of attraction, fascination, and fixation towards someone; often without actually knowing them that well. Although it often feels very intense infatuation tends to be based more on physical attraction and an imagined fantasy about who this person is.
In simple terms, infatuation means having a very strong attraction towards someone they hardly know. When you are infatuated, chances are, you would always reject pieces of information that go against the fantasy you are currently experiencing, such as ignoring early signs of incompatibility.
Signs of Infatuation
- You don’t know the person well enough on an actual personal level
- You feel so much obsessed with that person
- Always thinking about this person
- You feel like this person is basically perfect, or the “ideal” partner
- Most of what you know about the person is surface level, no deep connection.
- You’re very physically attracted to this person, and it can sometimes distract you from exploring other facets of this person
- You’ve never had any deep conversation with this person, but you are having this strong feeling for them
- The things you know about this person is the same thing any other acquaintance knows about them.
Infatuation and Love
Infatuation tends to happen very quickly and involves a strong attraction, love is a much deeper experience of knowing someone fully, feeling bonded and close to them, and caring about them in a way that’s both enduring and not centered around how they make you feel.
While love is more than just a feeling, it requires some knowledge about the person and being able to love despite knowing that their loved one is flawed and imperfect. Love is sacrifice and being willing to compromise.
Love is a form of intimacy, and intimacy requires to be seen and known.
Can Infatuation Grow To Be Love?
It is very rare to see infatuation turn into love because infatuation is fantasy and all fantasies have exppiry dates.
Better still in some cases, infatuation may turn into love if yu’re willing to give rather than become self-server. Infatuation is self-serving because you feel good fantasizing about the person, but the reality is that this person you think is perfect is probably not perfect. If you are to give, sacrifice, and compromise with the person you are infatuated with with joy and willingness, then yes, it can certainly turn into love.
How Long Can Infatuation Last in That Relationship
Infatuations occur almost immediately after meeting someone for the first time, but for how long it lasts in reltionships, there’s really not time duration. Infatuation is most distinct in the “honeymoon phase” of a relationship, which lasts a few weeks for some couples and a few months or even years for others.
Is Infatuation Wrong?
Infatuation is a feeling everyone experiences at some point in their lives. So it’s not wrong it just requires getting to know someone more intimately for it to grow into love.
However, infatuation can be also unhealthy in extremes. When you are infatuated, it probably means that you really like their appearance and feel sexually/physically attracted to them intensely. It is important to have sexual/physical attraction towards someone to develop a romantic relationship, but if infatuation becomes an obsession with unrealistic expectations and demands perfection, yes, it becomes wrong.
Bottomline is, infatuation can be part of an early stage of getting to know someone. It feels very intense, which is why many people confuse infatuation with love. It can also be present in the process of falling in love, and in healthy amounts, it’s not really wrong.
How to Tell the Difference Between Love and Infatuation
There’s always this thin line between love and infatuation. Infatuation is rooted in passion; you’re wildly attracted to the person, you’re excited to see them, the sex is great, etc. meanwhile, romantic love in both passion and intimacy; you have all the ingredients of infatuation, coupled with friendship, trust, support, etc
Here are some major the differences between love and infatuation
Always craving to be with this person… It’s Infatuation
Infatuation is always rooted in passion, excitement, and lust. It’s intoxicating. You might crave to be physically close to this person as often as you can. But if they wouldn’t be your first call if you had a bad day, or you are afraid of burdening them with a problem, it probably hasn’t evolved into love.
You always feel secure around this person… It’s Love
Love is patient, kind, caring, and so on… you know the anthem. With love, you feel completely complete. You feel able to open up about your deepest dreams and your darkest fears. When you’re with them, you certainly feel their presence not like they’re thinking about work, or might be talking to someone else online. Their presence is comfort.
If you’re always not certain about the relationship… It’s Infatuation
Love could be two-sided, infatuation, on the other hand, is often one-sided. If you’re infatuated, you might spend a lot of your time wondering about whether or not they’re super into you or committed to you. You might overthink the little things, like how to text them, always feeling so insecure.
If you can count on them when you’re in trouble… It’s Love
Take for instance you had an emergency, can you call the person in question? If your answer is yes, and you know you’ll get that supportive and comforting gesture, it’s love.
If it’s predominantly physical….. Its Infatuation
Is having sex the only time you get to have a good conversation? Do you meet their friends? Do you go out on a date? Must sex always have to be the only way out? Despite the fact that sex is important in any romantic relationship, with love, it doesn’t feel like the major thing. The most beautiful way to show your partner that you love them is to be true and sincere.
Is It Love or Infatuation Sign?
Below are signs to know that you’re in love. If it’s the opposite of this then you can safely categorize them under infatuation.
Can’t Help but Always Staring at Them
If you always stare at the person— not lustfully, it’s a sign that you’re falling in love. In general prolonged eye contact with someone means that you are highly fixated on them. This could be generalized to living and non living things.
Amazingly, research has it that starring at people right into their eyes often increases the chance of having a more strong romantic connection.
Can’t Stop Thinking About Them
When you’re falling in love there is every tendency that you cant stop thinking about them. This is because all you do and see during that period revolves around this person in particular.
This takes you to the point were you can’t get enough of that person. And again this could be infatuation too, but in this case it is hinged on being real or fantasy.
When trying to analyze the signs of infatuation and love, it’s very important to check your emotional experience. Emotional instability is a very important aspect of falling in love, at the very early stage.
Emotional instability puts you on and off at the same point. It comes with this overjoyed and energized experience, and the next time you’re down in anxiety whether or not the feeling is mutual, it keeps you going.
For the strong and energized emotions it comes by physical changes like a heart racing, lost of appetite, and difficulty in sleeping.
Just know to take your time, really invest in getting to know the person you’re with—flaws and all and maybe wait until the rose colored glasses comes off before making any big decisions.
Is it Love or Infatuation FAQs
How long does an infatuation last?
In most cases, infatuation lasts between 18 months and three years. Infatuation rarely lasts longer than that unless it is caused by a long-distance relationship or the enamored person’s deep insecurity.
How do you know if it's love or attachment?
The main distinction between love and attachment, according to relationship experts, is that “love is a feeling directed toward the ‘other’ (the other person, place, or object), whereas attachment is self-centered — meaning based on satisfying your need.”
Is infatuation the first stage of love?
The early stage of love (infatuation) can last up to six months in most cases. However, everyone’s experience is unique, and in some cases, it may last only a few days while in others, it may linger for years. This is the time to pay attention to people because love is in a blind phase right now.
What is the difference between like and love?
Loving someone implies that they are everything to you, whilst infatuation implies that you are merely content to be with them.