How to Handle Infatuation (Because You Must)

Updated on September 13, 2016
rohanfelix profile image

Rohan believes that being able to recognize infatuation when it occurs is a sign of maturity.

Almost everyone gets infatuated at some point of life. Do not beat yourself up and force yourself to live up to very impossible standards. Treat it as an experience of growth and you will have valuable lessons for life!
Almost everyone gets infatuated at some point of life. Do not beat yourself up and force yourself to live up to very impossible standards. Treat it as an experience of growth and you will have valuable lessons for life! | Source

Poll

Have you ever been infatuated?

See results

Love is never picture perfect. Don't expect it to be that way unless you are okay with ending up being sorely disappointed.

Picture-perfect love is almost always infatuation that is glorified. It is very passionate but never long-lasting. It makes for great photographs but leads to dissatisfaction and disappointment.
Picture-perfect love is almost always infatuation that is glorified. It is very passionate but never long-lasting. It makes for great photographs but leads to dissatisfaction and disappointment. | Source

Infatuation Vs. Love

It is not uncommon to have Infatuation and love compared. In most comparisons, infatuation is treated as a dangerous phenomenon, whereas love is shown to be healthy. The fundamental question that needs to be asked, however, often remains unanswered: what is infatuation, and how is it different from love?

In my humble opinion, and based on a lot of experience, at the risk of sounding extremely immature, I believe that infatuation is akin to driving a race car at over 300 kilometres an hour along country roads. It is an experience that is intense, and which provides a massive rush of excitement to the driver. Love, on the other hand is like riding a vintage car that has been tried and tested and which has always managed to cope with local road conditions, no matter how difficult.

Love is like a vintage car. It gives one gentle and long-lasting happiness and a deep sense of fulfillment that nothing else can quite match!

Slow but Sure! Love is long-lasting and full of happiness. Infatuation, on the other hand, while seemingly explosive and exciting, is short-lived.
Slow but Sure! Love is long-lasting and full of happiness. Infatuation, on the other hand, while seemingly explosive and exciting, is short-lived. | Source

How infatuation is manifested

Infatuation is almost always discovered in terms of a growing interest in another person, usually belonging to another gender. A clear sign of infatuation is the desire to be with the other person at any cost. Over a period of time, generally gradually, but sometimes rapidly, the other person takes the lion's share of all the thoughts of the infatuated person.

The infatuated person spends day and night thinking only about the other person, often losing a lot of sleep.

A person who is infatuated becomes extremely emotional even if the emotionality is not clearly manifested.

A person in infatuation attempts to fit a certain standard of acceptability in terms of physical appearance and personality, in order to interest the other.

Finally, the infatuated person develops a certain kind of false optimism that fails to see reason, only considering the remote possibility of being with the other as the reality that has been destined by supernatural forces. The infatuation seems to becomes the center of the universe, when in fact, it clearly isn't.

True Fact: Infatuation Leads to Heartbreak

Infatuation causes a lot of worry and pain. If the right lessons are learnt, however, it can be an excellent teacher capable of inducing meaningful life changes and a great deal of maturity in evaluating possibly romantic situations.
Infatuation causes a lot of worry and pain. If the right lessons are learnt, however, it can be an excellent teacher capable of inducing meaningful life changes and a great deal of maturity in evaluating possibly romantic situations. | Source

Why infatuation can be absolutely exhausting

The beginning of infatuation is almost always an ominous sign of the difficult times t come. Once infatuation has set in, it is almost impossible to roll back and will take its course.

Infatuation causes a disconnect from reality. The person of attraction becomes the 'be-it' and 'end-all' of the infatuated person's existence. Every action that the infatuated person performs is designed towards the end of obtaining the desired person, much like winning a trophy.

Oftentimes, the behaviour of the person in infatuation changes drastically. Mood swings become common, the person alternating between an unbelievable ecstasy and unbearable depression.

The frequent oscillation between extreme ecstasy and depression causes the onset of a long period of physical and emotional tiredness that is quite hard to get past.

She is my everything! She is the reason I'm alive. She is the princess of my life and my future wife! Of course she isn't! Stop fooling yourself! Be mature.

Infatuation causes a disconnect from reality. The person of attraction becomes the 'be-it' and 'end-all' of the infatuated person's existence.
Infatuation causes a disconnect from reality. The person of attraction becomes the 'be-it' and 'end-all' of the infatuated person's existence. | Source

Love as opposed to infatuation

Love provides one with a sense of security while infatuation creates insecurity. Love is not a feeling but an unchanging desire to be selfless. Love is prepared to make sacrifices. A person who is in true love is prepared even to leave the partner if it is required to ensure his or her happiness.

Infatuation appropriates for itself. The loss of a partner is unimaginable and debilitating to a person in infatuation.

Unlike infatuation, love is not affected by the vagaries of circumstance. Love, once established, stays.

True lovers have a sane and realistic vision for the future. Infatuated people live in a present that is changing by the moment.

It has been stated often, and I must state again that "love does not care about external beauty". A seeming lack of physical beauty can never be of detriment to love. On the other hand, infatuation consumes, either consciously or unconsciously, physical beauty, for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

Love is manufactured by true lovers and shared with the world they inhabit. Infatuation makes infatuated people neglect the world around them, especially their family, friends, and all those they are capable of spending time with.

See how infatuation stacks up against love

Infatuation
Love
Wants to receive
Wants to give
Generally short-lived
Always long-lasting
Mostly very impractical
Always very practical
Not willing to suffer for the other
Willing to suffer for the other if required
More emotion than good-sense
Very sensible
Selfish
Selfless
Doesn't trust the other person enough
Trusts the other person
Insecure
Secure
Will end without physical proximity
Will continue even without physical proximity
Seeks to impress
Does not seek to impress
Wants to be seen
Not interested in being seen
Ends in heartbreak
Doesn't end
Seeks instant gratification
Doesn't seek instant gratification
Wants to be picture-perfect
Isn't bothered about being picture-perfect
Forgets everyone apart from the target of attraction
Doesn't forget others
Considers physical beauty to be of prime Importance
Considers physical beauty to be of secondary importance

As is evident, there are many differences between infatuation and true love. Knowing these differences is a good start that one can make in order to be a more mature person.

Love is when the other person's happiness is more important than your own.

— H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

Never forget that infatuation is a lot about lust!

Infatuation is very passionate and full of lust. Whether the infatuated person accepts it or not, the truth is that infatuation is almost entirely about sex and romance. It is almost entirely about experiencing a 'rush'.
Infatuation is very passionate and full of lust. Whether the infatuated person accepts it or not, the truth is that infatuation is almost entirely about sex and romance. It is almost entirely about experiencing a 'rush'. | Source

How to deal with infatuation in a mature way

One or two experiences of infatuation in the teenage years are almost a certainty. However, repeatedly becoming infatuated is a sign of immaturity.

Confront the reality of people around you. Realize that everyone is human and prone to weaknesses. No one, he or she, is your perfect match. True love is always an imperfect match.

Get into the habit of listening to opinions contrary to your own, as and when you encounter them. This is a healthy habit that will widen your perspective of life.

Very importantly, and I recommend this useful practice. Pick out a trustworthy and elderly person of your own gender, a mature person, to confide in. It is good to let off emotional steam once in a way. A mature person is capable of handling it without becoming judgmental, and in the process, will also give you precious guidance and a new understanding. You do not need to share every little element of your life with such a person, or for that matter, with anyone, but if anything is troubling you and affecting your functioning, you must get it off your chest.

A trustworthy and mature adult of your gender can be a good person to confide in and ask for advice on how to handle your situation.

Finally...

Infatuation is not a crime. It is a phenomenon that occurs in virtually every person's life. It is a barometer of one's progress in becoming a balanced and mature person, sensible and capable of supporting a family. If you know of anyone who is struggling to cope with infatuation, be available to him/her as a friend. Rather than trying to advice the infatuated person, watch out for him/her and his/her emotions. Now that you know a fair bit about what goes on with a person in infatuation, read the signs and provide support as and when required.

Everyone becomes wiser and more mature with experience

Treat infatuation as a learning experience, and you will experience meaningful growth as a person. Eventually, you will reach a stage of objectivity, when you will become mature and less sensitive to what someone else thinks of your principles.
Treat infatuation as a learning experience, and you will experience meaningful growth as a person. Eventually, you will reach a stage of objectivity, when you will become mature and less sensitive to what someone else thinks of your principles.

Infatuation is a global phenomenon and one that occurs in virtually every single person's life regardless of gender.

Never beat yourself up if you think you have become infatuated with someone despite your best efforts not to get emotionally involved. Experience is a great teacher. Have an open mind, and you will learn some lessons that will prove to be invaluable in the future.

Bonus: An eye-opening video explaining the difference between love and lust

Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.

— Ann Landers

If you found this article meaningful, or if you want to share your experience(s) of infatuation or love with others, use the comments section below.

Questions & Answers

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      • profile image

        Alison Gross 3 months ago

        This article makes love sound really lame and boring. To use the metaphor here, if I knew I would never get to go 300 km again, driving would be pointless, except as a utility function and, if the car was sentient, it might agree with me (strange that the metaphor for a thing that supposed to be about giving makes the other party and inanimate object). Sure, we all have to be sensible sometimes but if there aren't also times when we can let go and enjoy ourselves, what's the point of life?

        Further, the dichotomy set up in this article makes love look as unrealistic and idealized as infatuation. I simply cannot believe that someone in a 20+ year relationship never feels selfish, never wants instant gratification, and never puts emotion above common sense and the current divorce rate, even many years into marriage puts the lie to the claim that "post infatuation" relationships are always long lasting or don't end. I think the current trend of trying to portray love and infatuation as totally separate and to vilify infatuation and exonerate love ignores the more nuanced and messy reality that is human life. My relationship is a total pick and mix from both sides of the chart here and I imagine many relationships look like that. This same kind of simplicity can be seen claiming the "cure" for infatuation is realizing people are imperfect. It's totally possible to obsess and swoon over someone's imperfections and to believe that you are destined to be together despite flaws or even elements of incompatibility. "The more obstacles in our path the more we prove our worthiness to be together." Totally impracticable and emotion driven but also totally not about instant gratification.

      • profile image

        Jane 3 months ago

        My infatuation over somebody is at the verge of costing me my marriage, I feel like I finally have fallen so low I should want to let it go and get over it, but it is just so hard.

      • profile image

        Kate 4 months ago

        I am experiencing infatuation with another. I know the euphoria/extreme sadness you speak of, it truly is exhausting. I constantly beat myself up for it but after reading that it is normal and that many people share this experience, I feel better. I have decided to stop being so hard on myself. "Everything new becomes old" - Indeed. Many thanks for this article.

      • profile image

        Morey 5 months ago

        So how does real love happen? If it can not be thru physical appearance

      • profile image

        Monica 7 months ago

        Thank you!

      • profile image

        T Mo 8 months ago

        I am currently struggling with infatuation. I've been infatuated with a coworker for three years and I am desperate to let go. I've tried everything and yet I still feel things. It is frustrating.

      • profile image

        paankaj sonawane 9 months ago

        very good article

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 11 months ago from Chennai, India

        Please take note of the word "usually."

      • profile image

        11 months ago

        "Infatuation is almost always discovered in terms of a growing interest in another person, usually belonging to another gender. "

        What a pointless and unnecessary statement. Infatuation can affect someone of any gender, towards someone else of any gender. Why gender this statement?!

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 12 months ago from Chennai, India

        I'm glad this article has helped you deal with your situation!

      • profile image

        Craftartist 12 months ago

        Your article perfect timing! So emotional with my infatuation. I didn't like how I was so obsessed with this person. I have stayed away and kept busy and talked myself on how this was not a good thing. Yes I getting my commonsense back!!!!!

      • profile image

        Ram 14 months ago

        Thanks a lot for providing this useful information

      • profile image

        RafaƂ 14 months ago

        Turns out I've never been in love and the current woman I'm chasing is also a passer-by. That seems to have made it a lot easier, thank you. Also, I'm laughing right now because I once again thought it's love.

      • profile image

        furkan 15 months ago

        ah.. so thats what it was. great srticle ser, word by word it fits my situation. in my case we were BOTH infatuated with each other which made the seperation very difficult.

        even now i repeatedly think about her but its hateful remarks now even though it used to be "pure love" for me. hah.. thinking back now about the stuff we said "we'll always be togethet now and forever" and how often i remember her in negative thoughts..

        The seperation made me feel like "real-Love-doesnt-exist" for a veeery long time up until now. im willing to try this love thing again.

        i must also note that the article is indeed black and white, neither of us caed about appearances or physical contact. the rest was true though.

      • profile image

        Shashi Ganiha 16 months ago

        Thanks a ton for this article. This absolutely relates to my current life. Very useful!!!

      • profile image

        no.one 16 months ago

        I can relate

      • profile image

        Mr.Nobody 16 months ago

        I can relate. My self-diagnosis is correct.

      • profile image

        Xyz 18 months ago

        Nice article on what actually happens when one is affected by infatuation. ... thanks. .

      • profile image

        LFG 21 months ago

        This article is a little black and white. The table comparing infatuation to love appears to imply that infatuation is largely negative, and love positive, but fails to acknowledge that there are positive and negative aspects of both. While I agree with the majority of the article, I don't believe it's as clear cut as the article suggests. But maybe that's because I'm currently suffering from infatuation. ;)

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 21 months ago from Chennai, India

        You've learnt a difficult lesson, haven't you? I'm sure this learning has made you very strong!

      • profile image

        setanksetunk 21 months ago

        I wish I had your article a long time ago. I figured out 20 years later that a crushing infatuation I had, which altered the course of my life, was merely a projection of feelings of true love I had for someone else. It would be nice to have had a clue a bit earlier. But with matters of the heart, I am one of those people woefully inept.

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 21 months ago from Chennai, India

        I'm glad you found this article useful!

      • profile image

        Anon 22 months ago

        This is the most useful article I have ever read in my life. How have I never heard of infatuation before? This has been really helpful at this point in my life right now.

      • profile image

        someone 2 years ago

        it is very meaninful

      • profile image

        Jim 3 years ago

        This article has helped to ground me today. I have been through and emotional nightmare for a few weeks, with seemingly no control over my roller-coaster emotions, which have ranged from euphoric to suicidal. This is the third time this has happened to me, and I am not young - I am 61 years old. It is a very painful condition, from which I am slowly recovering. Thank you for the article - a reader in Ireland.

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 3 years ago from Chennai, India

        I'm glad you found this article useful!

      • profile image

        Ali Ahmed 3 years ago

        I've been suffering for the past 8-10 years with chronic infatuations.

        This somewhat helped.

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 3 years ago from Chennai, India

        I'm glad you found this article helpful.

      • profile image

        allen 3 years ago

        thanks for the article i have finally found out my problem

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 4 years ago from Chennai, India

        Many thanks for the meaningful opinion Mr. Rahul!

      • profile image

        rahul naidu 4 years ago

        This article veraciously sticks to its subject without being subjective. It's a must read. I congratulate the writer.

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 4 years ago from Chennai, India

        I must agree that infatuation is a form of obsession.

      • rohanfelix profile image
        Author

        Rohan Rinaldo Felix 4 years ago from Chennai, India

        Very meaningful words there. I definitely agree that infatuation is a phase that everyone goes through.

      • Paul Edmondson profile image

        Paul Edmondson 4 years ago from Burlingame, CA

        Infatuation doesn't have to be aimed at a person either. I often think of infatuation along the lines of enthusiast and/or obsession. All of which can be good when applied in a healthy manner....

      • dashingscorpio profile image

        dashingscorpio 4 years ago

        Instead of attempting to avoid infatuation in my opinion it is best to (accept) that it is the natural (first) step in all new relationships. Infatuation is nothing more than a chemical reaction towards someone you are attracted to that causes you to feel giddy and excited to be around them.

        A mature person knows and accepts that this is normal for the beginning of most relationships. They also understand it takes (time) for people to reveal their "authentic selves" and therefore they relent from making promises or overly committing too soon. Infatuation always fades so enjoy it while it lasts. However just understand it's phase one. Everything new becomes old.

        "Never separate your mind from your heart when making relationship decisions. The purpose of the mind is to protect the heart."

        One man's opinion! :-)

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