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Sacred Love Versus Profane Love (1602–03) by Giovanni Baglione.

Love addiction is a human behavior in which people become addicted to the feeling of love. Love addicts can take on many different behaviors. Love addiction strikes quite commonly in the modern world, however most love addicts do not realize they are addicted to love at all. Love addiction can be treated with many different recovery techniques and ways, most of which are similar to recovery from other addictions such as sex addiction, and alcoholism, through group meetings and support groups. (Bireda 5)

Contents

Process

The normal process of falling into love addiction begins when a person begins to feel sympathy with another person after going through an initially innocent moment of attraction and automatically idealizes the other to the point of divinity. The individual is then blindly attached to the other person, where they are incapable of making a realistic analysis of the situation and projects in the other all kinds of illusions, believing the other to be the only one that can bring happiness. This process can be very quick, known by some as Cupid's arrow. Be that as it may, this can at times be simply a passing feeling that for some is necessary to achieve a more mature relationship. There are, however, those who never go past this stage of blind love. (Timmreck 12-14)

Obsession over anything can be considered the primary symptom of an addiction. In love addiction, the individual will feel needed and so insecure about themselves, that they become attached to the object of their affection. It is typically not normal desire of a union, but a hungry, insatiable power, that distorts the person's perception of reality. Because of this, love addiction is simply suffering brought about by an obsession over another. (Timmreck 15)

Types

There are many different types of love addicts. Some common types include, but are not limited to:

  • Obsessed Love addicts: a lover, a son, etc. This type of addiction comes with the inability to live independently from another person, or a feeling of possession.
  • Codependency addicts
  • Relationship addicts: This can represent itself as an addiction to the idea of having a relationship instead of a person. There are two types: those who are constantly in and out of relationships and those who will not let go of a bad relationship for the sake of having a relationship.
  • Narcissistic love addicts
  • Ambivalent love addicts
  • Torch bearers
  • Seductive withholders
  • Romance addicts: This can represent itself as an obsession over romance itself, including, but not limited to adventure and passion. People suffering with this type of love addiction worry about romantic rituals such as dates, dinner, sex, and everything else that has to do with a passing romance. This can often be a representation of the person's individual fantasies. Love addicts will seek seduction and conquest, but quickly tire of it. A typical example is the legendary Don Juan.

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