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Counseling Center Corner

"To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides." David Viscott

The desire to love and be loved is a motivating force for many of us. We seek connection whether with a parent, significant other, or friend. Instinctively we know that life is at times tough but can be managed if we have at least one other person to walk this path with us. To give and receive love can be restorative, it can lift our spirits, and lighten our hearts.

At the same time, we worry about accepting love in our lives.  We want to hide behind a wall where the fear and the vulnerability of trusting in someone is strong; so very strong. We are terrified of being hurt. When I think about why there is so much fear in loving I realize that it is an issue of control. We want to love, we yearn for another, but we want it with conditions. We want the other person to love us back, in the way we want to be loved, and we want an ironclad promise that said love will remain forever without change. Having conditions or expectations isn’t necessarily a bad thing.  No matter what love looks like we should expect that whether it is parent, child, friend, or intimate partner it is important to have good boundaries and expect to have those boundaries respected. It’s tough to lose love, tough to be hurt and rejected but we do need each other. Keeping your heart open to the possibility of love is one of the best ways we have as humans to embrace life; to honor the best in all of us.

"To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already three parts dead." Bertrand Russell

Shadisha Bennett Brodde
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