Do I love him enough?

Dear Lisa,

My boyfriend and I have been together for three years. So far things have been great; we’ve had normal couple issues but nothing too crazy. Over the past couple of days, though, he has been saying ‘I love you’, ‘I’m so lucky to have you’ and ‘you are beautiful’ about four hundred percent more than he usually does and I’m feeling really guilty that I don’t seem to feel it as much as he does.

Actually, lately I’ve been on a bit of a low swing with my attraction to him, and my life in general. Is it time to have a talk?

–Surprised ( ♀ Duncan)


Dear Surprised,

Since I don’t know love story, I can’t say whether it’s time to have a talk or not. I can tell you that at this point in the relationship you are entitled to believe that talking through this isn’t going to rock one of you out of the boat, so go ahead and let him know what’s going on for you if you feel it would ease your mind.

Another thought though: because this uneasiness and guilt has come up only after his sudden profession of just how much he feels for you, I think it is important to look deeper than the current situation and notice how much love you think you’re worth.

You mentioned that your life in general and your feelings for him are on a bit of a downswing, which makes me wonder how you are feeling about yourself right now. If the idea that you can only love another as much as you love yourself has any truth to it, then maybe part of the reason you are feeling guilty has to do with whether you believe the words coming from his mouth.

Your current feelings about him and life, coupled with the fact that that there has been such a sudden injection of feelings from him would definitely make for an uncomfortable confrontation with your own beliefs around worthiness.

I suggest that you don’t try to meet him in his love word for word, just try to relieve yourself of all pressure to reciprocate at this point in your life. Say only what you feel to him when you feel it, and do your best to stay in your heart about it (avoid ‘I think I….’ etc)

Instead focus on noticing the times when you send messages to yourself that you aren’t enough – pretty enough, smart enough, successful enough, capable enough…. LOVING enough, and give it a shot examining the truth. Replace these thoughts with the phrase ‘I am enough.’ or ‘I am worth it’.

Remember that (hopefully) he’s not saying he loves you to hear you say it back! He’s letting you know what you are, now it’s your turn to believe it.

– Lisa



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