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Sometimes love is not enough, and some relationships actually need more then just love. Love is just a word unless you put it into practice. And in order to put Love into practice, you need to understand what Love is.

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A man showing a women love Love is when you really like someone a lot and really care about them, so much so that they are always on your mind. And you may not like everything about that someone, but you can still love them. But you can also like a lot of things about someone, but not truly love them. So love is not always clearly visible or fully understood. So love is part discovery and part learning. You can count the things that make you happy, but that does not mean that you will have happiness. And you can count all the things that you like about someone, but that does not mean that you will have True Love for that person.

Don't blame Love for your feelings or thoughts, don't blame Love for your Broken Heart, Love does not Stink or Hurt, and don't blame Love for being Jealous, don't blame Love for not meeting your Expectations, don't blame Love for being Insecure, don't blame Love for being blind or Tainted, because love does not cause those things to happen, you cause those things to happen. So the only thing to blame is our own ignorance and our own lack of knowledge. There is lot to learn about Relationships, and there's also a lot to learn about Your-Self. So don't play the blame game, play the learning game, it's much more fun and a lot more rewarding. Now that's Love. 

"If you're always trying to seek the approval of people and just doing things for their approval, then doing good things will lose it's true meaning, which is to make life better for everyone and not just yourself." Being loved is a responsibility in the same way that having power is a responsibility. You need to be aware of the influences and the vulnerabilities. Ego.

Love is many things. Love is part balance, harmony, equality, sharing, listening and caring, just to name a few.

Love is a Responsibility. You choose who to love, and others will choose who to love. You may become immediately attracted to someone, but this is not love, at least not yet. You may not know exactly why you care about someone all of a sudden, but you do choose to love them, or choose not to love them. If you feel that you have no choice who you choose to love, then you don't fully understand what love is. Falling in love is OK, but never confirming why you love someone is not OK.

"You can't make someone love you, but you can definitely become someone who can be loved" just Don't be a Sucker for Love and Affection.

Types of Love

Two Hands Making a Heart Symbol The first type of Love is Emotional Love or Romantic Love, being in Love someone. "I'm so in Love with that person, I want to know everything about that person, I want to feel and experience love as if we were one". This is not the same as Infatuation, Puppy Love, a crush, or Love Addiction, or is it love at first sight, because how could you fall in love with someone you personally don't know? You are mostly just falling in Love with a Dream. A dream that has been passed down for centuries in the way of love stories, love songs and movies. Like Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and thousands of other Love Stories in History and in Literature. This is a beautiful dream but it is clearly not Reality or even logical. It takes time to know someone, it even takes more time to Know Yourself or to Love Yourself.

"Learn to love yourself first, instead of loving the idea of other people loving you." 

The goal is to love someone else without loving yourself any less, because the best part of the love that you give to someone else comes partially from the love that you give to yourself.

Love also has chemistry, like Oxytocin, Endorphins and Dopamine. But don't let the feel good high from hormones cloud your judgment.

And yes Love Hurts, especially when we lose the love of someone dear to us. Broken Heart.

Interpersonal Attraction is the attraction between people which leads to friendships and to platonic or romantic relationships. Interpersonal attraction, the process, is distinct from perceptions of physical attractiveness, which involves views of what is and is not considered beautiful or attractive.

Sexual Attraction - Physical Attractiveness

Soulmate is a person with whom one has a feeling of deep or natural affinity. This may involve similarity, love, romance, comfort, intimacy, sexuality, sexual activity, spirituality, or compatibility and trust.

Dating - Marriage

The Second type of Love is Appreciative Love, I love that person, their friendship is extremely important to me and I would always be ready to help that person when ever they needed me. I Listen with complete Awareness when they Speak, for I know at times that they carefully listen to me when I speak. This includes Parental Love. The love between a parent and their child can be one of the strongest kinds of love, but also one of the most complicatedAttachment Theory

When the two loves are combined, it creates a very special love, A love everyone should have. But even if you don't have emotional love, that will never stop you from loving or stop you from being loved, that is truly the value of love. Love is non Conditional, though Love flourishes in more favorable Conditions.

Love is to have a great affection or liking for someone or something. A beloved person; used as terms of endearment. A strong positive emotion of regard and affection. Get pleasure from.  Love is a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that ranges from interpersonal affection ("I love my mother") to pleasure ("I loved that meal"). It can refer to an emotion of a strong attraction and personal attachment. It can also be a virtue representing human kindness, compassion, and affection—"the unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another". It may also describe compassionate and affectionate actions towards other humans, one's self or animals.

Romantic Love is the expressive and pleasurable feeling from an emotional attraction towards another person often associated with sexual attraction. It is eros rather than agape, philia, or storge. "Love does not mean sex and sex does not mean love".

Unconditional Love is when you love someone without having any unfair restrictions, requirements, limitations or conditions. It means that you will be by their side and forgive them even when they make mistakes or have a change of heart. This does not mean that we should ignore our responsibilities or ignore the contracts that we make with each other. It means that we shouldn't punish people or blame people without having an Honest and Civil Discourse. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty, but even then, you still need a fair Judge and Jury. The term unconditional love is also sometimes associated with other terms such as true altruism, or complete love. Each area of expertise has a certain way of describing unconditional love, but most will agree that it is that type of love which has no bounds and is unchanging. It is a concept comparable to true love, a term which is more frequently used to describe love between lovers. By contrast, unconditional love is frequently used to describe love between family members, comrades in arms and between others in highly committed relationships. An example of this is a parent's love for their child; no matter a test score, a life changing decision, an argument, or a strong belief, the amount of love that remains between this bond is seen as unchanging and unconditional. Unconditional love is garnered and shared by those who love themselves first. "Love should flow naturally. You should never force love or expect love. You should only let Love flow naturally."

Platonic Love is a type of love that is non-sexual. The term is named after Plato, who described a kind of love centered on same-gender relations and included sex which underwent a transformation during Renaissance (15th–16th centuries) to get its contemporary sense of asexual heterosexual love.

Agape is "love: the highest form of love, charity; the love of God for man and of man for God." Not to be confused with philia – brotherly love – agape embraces a universal, unconditional love that transcends, that serves regardless of circumstance

Brotherly Love is an extension of the natural affection associated with near kin, toward the greater community of fellow believers, that goes beyond the mere duty. To "love thy neighbor as thyself", and shows itself as "unfeigned love" from a "pure heart", that extends an unconditional hand of friendship that loves when not loved back, that gives without getting, and that ever looks for what is best in others.

is to love someone very much.

Affection is a tender and warm feeling toward someone; extreme fondness. Affection is a feeling or type of love, amounting to more than goodwill or friendship.

Admire is a feeling of delighted approval and liking. A favorable judgment. Good.

Amore is the Italian word for love.

Amour is a very serious love affair, usually a secret or discrete.

Cherish is to have great affection and caring for someone.

Passion is a strong feeling or emotion. Something that is desired intensely. An irrational but irresistible motive for a belief or action. Any object of warm affection or devotion. Passion emotion is a very strong feeling about a person or thing. Passion is an intense emotion, a compelling enthusiasm or desire for something.

Obsessive Love is when a person feels an overwhelming obsessive desire to possess another person toward whom one feels a strong attraction, with an inability to accept failure or Rejection.

Infatuation is the state of being carried away by an unreasoned passion without insight or proper evaluative judgment. Blind desire that exhibits bad judgment and misevaluation for reasons such as ignorance or recklessness', regardless of desire.

Puppy Love is an informal term for feelings of love, romance, or infatuation, often felt by young people during their childhood and adolescence. It is named for its resemblance to the adoring, worshipful affection that may be felt by a puppy. It may also be able to describe short/long-term love interest. The term can be used in a derogatory fashion, describing emotions which are shallow and transient in comparison to other forms of love such as romantic love.

is obsessive feelings that you have towards someone for No Logical Reason, which sometimes causes you to think about them more than anything else.

Limerence is a state of mind which results from a romantic attraction to another person and typically includes obsessive thoughts and fantasies and a desire to form or maintain a relationship with the object of love and have one's feelings reciprocated.

Desired is wanting intensely. Addictions - Dependencies.

Fixations are attachments to people or things in general persisting from childhood into adult life. Body Image.

Agape is a Greco-Christian term referring to love, "the highest form of love, charity" and "the love of God for man and of man for God". The word is not to be confused with philia, brotherly love, as it embraces a universal, unconditional love that transcends and persists regardless of circumstance. The noun form first occurs in the Septuagint, but the verb form goes as far back as Homer, translated literally as affection, as in "greet with affection" and "show affection for the dead". Other ancient authors have used forms of the word to denote love of a spouse or family, or affection for a particular activity, in contrast to eros (an affection of a sexual nature).

Devotion is the commitment to some purpose. Comparisons.
Like is to find something or someone enjoyable or agreeable. Be fond of. A feeling of pleasure and enjoyment.

Philia is a positive feeling of liking.

Rejection is dismissing or refusing of a proposal, which is not bad, except that some people who reject you express a lack of respect accompanied by a feeling of intense dislike, which can hurt. No need to be mean, it may spread. Cheating.

Social Rejection occurs when an individual is deliberately excluded from a social relationship or social interaction.

Rejected is to dismiss from consideration. Refuse to accept or acknowledge. Deem something wrong or inappropriate, but the person may be Objective or Biased, but it is still a choice, and not a judgment. Stay Confident and practice Forgiveness.

Rejection is a harsh word, and it's also not an accurate word to use. Everyone has different tastes and different needs, and those tastes and needs change as we get older and become more mature. So sometimes relationships are all about the timing. When you meet someone at the right time, it's easier to make a connection. But this does not mean that the connection will last, because everyone changes over time. Some changes take people in different directions, and other changes may take us in the same direction, which means that a long lasting relationship is very possible.

Shunning can be the act of social rejection, or emotional distance. In a religious context, shunning is a formal decision by a denomination or a congregation to cease interaction with an individual or a group, and follows a particular set of rules. It differs from, but may be associated with, excommunication.

Betrayal is the breaking or violation of a presumptive contract, trust, or confidence that produces moral and psychological conflict within a relationship amongst individuals. Treason.

Hatred (forgiveness)

Don't Pull Your Love by Hamilton, Joe Frank, & Reynolds - Don't pull your love out on me honey. Take my heart, my soul, my money. But don't leave me drownin' in my tears.

Body Image

"We shouldn't put a face on love, because love is not a face, love is everything behind the face."

"Falling in love is not always a choice, but to stay in love is."

"Anyone can come into your life and say how much they love you. It takes someone really special to stay in your life and show how much they love you."

"Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind, and therefore is winged Cupid painted blind." - (Act I, Scene I).  Henry V Play 1599.

"To fall in love for superficial reasons is an insult to love. Love should be pure, otherwise that act of loving someone becomes fake and exploitive." 

Superficial is seeing only the surface. Insignificant details of little importance. Narrowness of mind.

Love Songs

My favorite Love Song is by Roberta Flack "The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face" (1969) (youtube)
Simon and Garfunkel - Bridge Over Troubled Water (youtube)
Love Songs by The Beatles - The Word
Carly Simon - That's The Way I Always Heard It Should Be - 1971 (youtube)
Judy Collins - Send In The Clowns (youtube)
Rihanna: Diamonds (SNL)  Stay
Alicia Keys - No On (youtube)
Partridge Family - I Think I Love You (youtube)
Carpenters -We've Only Just Begun (youtube)
Lady Antebellum - Just a Kiss (youtube)
Linger - The Cranberries (youtube)
We're Not Broken, Just Bent (youtube)
The Beach Boys - Wouldn't It Be Nice (youtube)
You're My Best Friend - Queen (youtube)
Righteous Brothers - Unchained Melody (youtube)
Blue Swede - Hooked On A Feeling, I'm high on believing, that you're in love with me, Ooga-Ooga Ooga-Chaka.
The Platters - Only You (youtube)
To Love Somebody - Bee Gees (youtube) wiki
Say Anything... (3/5) Movie CLIP - Boombox Serenade (1989) HD (youtube)
Peter Gabriel - In Your Eyes (youtube)
Donna Lewis - I Love You Always Forever (youtube)
Vanessa Williams - Save The Best For Last (youtube) "Sometimes the one thing you're looking for is the one thing you can't see."

Love Quotes
Famous Love Songs
Romantic Lyrics
Friendship Songs
Happy Songs
Relationship Songs
Wedding Songs

I Love You

I would say I love you more often, but I'm not sure who you are? It's not that I don't love you, because I do love you. It's that when I say I love you to someone, I want them to be sure what part of them I love. I certainly don't love everything about you, but I also don't love everything about me either, because no one is perfect. So please remember that love is always there, but don't expect love to always be there for you, because love needs love too. And reaching out is the same as reaching in. For love to truly connect it must come from both sides, without any expectations or conditions. Love is Pure, and in order for love to flourish you must agree to be pure with love. Positive or Good Attracts Good, and Negative Repeals Positive or Good. That's one of the main reasons why Loving Yourself and Forgiving Yourself is important.

Pure is something that is free of bad qualities and free of unnecessary elements of any kind. Something that is pleasing and valuable and in its natural state of harmony.

Purist is one who desires that an item remain true to its essence and free from adulterating or diluting influences.

Good is having desirable or positive qualities especially those suitable for a thing specified. Morally admirable. Promoting or enhancing well-being. Agreeable or pleasing. Of Moral excellence or admirableness. Having or showing knowledge and skill and aptitude. Most suitable or right for a particular purpose. Resulting favorably. Capable of pleasing. Appealing to the mind. In excellent physical condition. Tending to promote physical well-being; beneficial to health. Generally admired. Beneficial.
That which is pleasing or valuable or useful. In a good or proper or satisfactory manner or to a high standard. The quality of doing what is right and avoiding what is wrong. A good friend.

Patience - Positive Thinking - Being Friendly

is the act of showing regard for others. Pleasant or pleasing or agreeable in nature or appearance. Socially or conventionally correct; refined or virtuous. Done with delicacy and skill. Exhibiting courtesy and politeness. A courteous manner that respects accepted social usage.

Thoughtful is the considerate of the feelings or well-being of others. Showing concern for the rights and feelings of others. Acting with or showing thought and good sense. Exhibiting or characterized by careful thought. Having intellectual depth.

Kind is having or showing a tender and considerate and helpful nature; used especially of persons and their behavior.
Tolerant and Forgiving under provocation.

This is way beyond the Law of Attraction, this is about being good because you know what being good is and you have learned how being good benefits others. This is not about being good so that other people like you, that's False Advertising, Misleading, Deceptive, Manipulative and Fake. True Love will never be found through coercion, force or pressure. And rejection is not about someone rejecting love, it's just not excepting the deliverer. So find another way to deliver your message of love or find someone else who can deliver this love. If you can't do either then put this refusal aside for another time when more information and knowledge is learned.

Fake is a person who makes deceitful pretenses. Fraudulent; having a misleading appearance. Not genuine or real; being an imitation of the genuine article. Something that is a counterfeit; not what it seems to be. Speak insincerely or without regard for facts or truths. Don't Play Games

Propaganda - Acting - Inaccurate

Pretenses is the act of giving a false appearance. Pretending with intention to deceive. A false or unsupportable quality.

"Love only needs each other, but it's not as simple as it sounds
. Though Love is natural, and though Love can be felt by anyone, young or old, and even though Love does not require any intelligence, Love does get better when you keep learning about yourself, and about others, and about the world around you. This is not to say that Love requires knowledge, but Love does come from knowledge, so knowledge requires Love. Are you Lovin this?"

Love is Knowledge - Love is Information

The Summer of Love never really ended, it just manifested itself into the generations that followed. This awakening made us aware of our problems, but we never learned how to truly solve them. So the next big wave will be The Summer of Learning, this will finally take us home. It took us a while, but we finally figured it out that improving education was the answer all along. Our intelligence is our greatest strength, but we have to learn how to effectively utilize our intelligence, and the only way to do that is to improve education so that intelligence is a guarantee for everyone. Knowledge and information must flow like love did during the 60's. But this time, we'll have the wisdom and the maturity to see this through, and finally solve all the problems that have plagued us for way to long. The time has come, this is our time, Godspeed!

"Though I have experienced Love at first sight many times and have floated in the air from a single kiss, I have learned over time to separate my dreams from reality, no matter how beautiful those moments were and how those memories still please me."

"I have been in love with the same women since the beginning of time. But I lost touch with her and I have not seen her for years. I know she's still around because I never stop feeling her presence. I just don't know where she is now, and I wonder who is she now? Is she the same women I fell in love with? I know that I have changed and I know that have that grown over the years, so I wonder if her changes match mine. I hope that we both learned the same things. I feel its time for us to be together again. I know She's close. And I also know that time is irrelevant. I'm here, give me a sign."

To Love is to have Knowledge

I want you to have love, but I also want you to be intelligent, because then I will know for sure that love will be safe with you, and that love will help guide you and that you will help guide love through your entire life.

Love is totally amazing. Everyone should be loved. But you need to know the reality of love. Love is not clearly defined or fully understood. We know that we want love and we know how great love feels, but we don't fully understand love, at least not the way we should. Love will not solve your problems or provide you with any guarantees. They only way for love to flourish and survive is for everyone to learn everything that they can about themselves and the world around them. Love comes with no instructions, so you must learn what the instructions are. The more intelligent you become, the stronger love becomes. You might not find love in this lifetime, but love will find you. And the only way to know when love is near, is to learn everything that you can about yourself and the world around you. Then you will see love in more places and more often, and you will also understand the differences between dreams and reality. Love is the strongest when it finds a home in a mind that is strong enough to embrace its power.

As children we grow up with that dream of finding someone special who will love us forever and be with us throughout our entire life. It is a beautiful dream, but it is not reality. Yes you can be loved and yes you can love others. But you need more then love.

You can list the things you like and don't like, but the bottom line is love, and a full understanding that people change and so do you. So the person you originally fell in love with will change. So does this mean that the things you loved about that person are gone? Or did you misunderstand the things you thought the person was? Or did you value things that you loved about that person incorrectly? Learning to love takes a long time, learning who to love takes even longer.

Being in a Intimate relationship, or being married, is not as important as all the other relationships that we have in life. The relationship that we have with ourselves, the relationships that we have with family and friends, and the relationship that we have with mother earth and the environment, are much more important and meaningful relationships then our intimate ones.

We put too much pressure on ourselves, and so does society and the media. People incorrectly believe that If they are not in love there must be something wrong with them, which is mostly false. All relationships require work and responsibility. And all relationships are equally important. Don't sacrifice one relationship for the other. And if you feel that you have not found love, just remember, love is created, not found. Looking for Love is misleading, you must create love, and the person who responds the most to the love that you have created, is someone to pay attention to, but don't expect intimacy, only embrace intimacy and love when it is genuine and true.


Not only is Jealousy bad for relationships, it is one of the main causes of violence in relationships. Jealousy provides no accuracy in a persons awareness, and it is a behavior that has no value. Empathy is Healthier.

Jealousy is an emotion, and the word typically refers to the thoughts and feelings of insecurity, fear, concern, and anxiety over an anticipated loss of status or something of great personal value, particularly in reference to a human connection. Jealousy often consists of a combination of emotions such as anger, resentment, inadequacy, helplessness and disgust.

Crime of Passion refers to a violent crime, especially homicide, in which the perpetrator commits the act against someone because of sudden strong impulse such as sudden rage rather than as a premeditated crime.

Love–Hate Relationship involves simultaneous conflicting responses or alternating emotions of love and hate.

"If you love something, then let it go. If it comes back to you, then it may be yours again. But if it doesn't come back to you, then maybe it was never meant to be."

"You can love someone, but you can never possess them. Nothing can be owned, only temporarily enjoyed."

In order to truly love something or to truly love someone, you have to be able let them go and let them be free. Love is not about possession, Love is about freedom.

You don't know what you've got until it's gone or you don't know what you're missing until it's gone, but how will you know it's missing or gone when you don't know what you are missing or what you had? Just because you realize that something isn't there anymore, this doesn't mean that you understood what it was that was there. The first three words to this saying are "You
don't know
", so why don't you know? It's true that sometimes you don't know how important someone is or valuable something is until you don't have it anymore. But what did you have? What was it? And why didn't you know how valuable or how important that something was? If it does come back, will we have learned anything? Will we continue to assume that something will always be there? Will we plan to prepare ourselves this time for this type of scenario repeating itself in the future?

Joni Mitchell Big Yellow Taxi (youtube) Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got till it's gone, they paved paradise and put up a parking lot. (1970).

Is a Taste of Honey worse than none at All?

Envy occurs when a person lacks another's superior quality, achievement, or possession and either desires it or wishes that the other lacked it. Be careful what you wish for monkey paw.

Unloved: Guilty of Love (youtube)

Jealousy is a defect in thinking with no logic what so ever. Jealousy is related to Insecurity, Paranoia and Delusional Thinking. You want to be aware of your love interest but you don't want to jump to conclusions or assume things that may not be true. This is not about trust, for trusting can be blind sometimes. This is about being aware and asking the right questions, questions that won't reveal insecurity, paranoia or delusional thinking. You want your questions to help you understand a persons behavior, as well as help you understand your own feelings. There's nothing cute or romantic about jealousy, it is a sign of ignorance, which means that you have some things to learn about yourself, as well as, some things to learn about what a Healthy Relationship is really about. 

Don't let obsessive love and Jealousy get the best of you, look on the Brightside, and focus on what's important.

"You have to be faithful to yourself if you're going to be faithful to others."

Control Freak describes a person who attempts to dictate how everything is done around them. The phrase was first used in the 1970s, an era when stress was laid on the principle of 'doing one's own thing' and letting others do the same.

Aggression - Cheating - Sexual Harassment

Characteristics of Jealousy - Insecure (lacking knowledge)

Jealousy is the result of a relational transgression, such as a partner having a sexual or emotional affair. Jealousy can also be seen as a transgression in its own right, when a partner's suspicions are unfounded. Thus, jealousy is an important component of relational transgressions. There are several types of jealousy. Romantic jealousy occurs when a partner is concerned that a potential rival might interfere with his or her existing romantic relationship. Sexual jealousy is a specific form of romantic jealousy where an individual worries that a rival is having or wants to have sex with his or her partner.

Other forms of jealousy include:
Friend jealousy - feeling threatened by a partner's relationships with friends.
Family jealousy - feeling threatened by a partner's relationships with family members.
Activity jealousy - perceiving that a partner's activities, such as work, hobbies, or school, are interfering with one's relationship.
Power jealousy - perceiving that one's influence over a partner is being lost to others.
Intimacy jealousy - believing that one's partner in engaging in more intimate communication, such as disclosure and advice seeking, with someone else.

Jealousy is different from envy and rivalry. Envy occurs when people want something valuable that someone else has. Rivalry occurs when two people are competing for something that neither person has.

Experiencing romantic jealousy. Individuals who are experiencing jealous thoughts typically make primary and secondary cognitive appraisals about their particular situation. Primary appraisals involve general evaluations about the existence and quality of a rival relationship. Secondary appraisals involve more specific evaluations about the jealous situation, including possible causes of the jealousy and potential outcomes to the situation. There are four common types of secondary appraisals: jealous people assess motives; jealous people compare themselves to their rival; they evaluate their potential alternatives;
finally, jealous people assess their potential loss.

Jealous individuals make appraisals to develop coping strategies and assess potential outcomes. Jealous individuals normally experience combinations of emotions, in addition to the aforementioned cognitive appraisals. The most common emotions associated with jealousy are fear and anger; people are fearful of losing their relationship and they are often angry at their partner or rival. Other common negative emotions associated with jealousy are sadness, guilt, hurt, and envy. Sometimes, however, jealousy leads to positive emotions, including increased passion, love, and appreciation. Relational partners sometimes intentionally induce jealousy in their relationship.  There are typically two types of goals for jealousy induction. Relational rewards reflect the desire to improve the relationship, increase self-esteem, and increase relational rewards. The second type of goal, relational revenge, reflects the desire to punish one's partner, the need for revenge, and the desire to control one's partner. The tactic of inducing jealousy may produce unintended consequences, as jealousy often leads to other relational transgressions including violence.

Communicative responses to jealousy. Jealousy can involve a wide range of communicative responses. These responses are based upon the individuals' goals and emotions. The most common of these responses are negative affect expression, integrative communication, and distributive communication. When people want to maintain their relationship, they use integrative communication and compensatory restoration. People who are fearful of losing their relationships typically use compensatory restoration. Conversely, people who are concerned with maintaining their self-esteem allege that they deny jealous feelings. When individuals are motivated to reduce uncertainty about their partner, they use integrative communication, surveillance, and rival contacts to seek additional information. Communicative responses to jealousy may help reduce uncertainty and restore self-esteem, but they may actually increase uncertainty and negatively impact relationships and self-esteem in some instances. The type of communicative response used is critical. For example, avoidance/denial may be used to protect one's self-esteem, but it may also result in increased uncertainty and relational dissatisfaction, if the jealous partner is left with lingering suspicions. Similarly, compensatory restoration may improve the relationship in some instances, but it may also communicate low self-esteem and desperation by the jealous individual. Distributive communication, which includes behaviors such as yelling and confrontation, may serve to vent negative emotion and retaliate by making the partner feel bad. This may exacerbate an already negative situation and make reconciliation less likely.

Jealousy and relational satisfaction. Jealousy is generally considered to be a relationship dysfunction, though it may have some positive relational properties. These positive properties can be attained through development of one's ability to manage jealousy in a productive way, so that the jealous individual shows care and concern without seeming overly fearful, aggressive, or possessive. Negative affect expression can be effective if used in conjunction with integrative communication. Compensatory restoration can be effective, but when used in excess, too much can make an individual seem desperate and too eager to please, which can have detrimental effects on the relationships.

Rumination. From the aspect of jealousy, rumination reflects uncomfortable mulling about the security of a relationship. Rumination refers to thoughts that are conscious, recurring, and not demanded by the individual's current environment. Ruminative thoughts occur repetitively and are difficult to eliminate. In the context of relational threats, rumination can be described as obsessive worry about the security of the current relationship. Individuals who ruminate are very likely to respond to jealousy differently from individuals who do not ruminate. Rumination is positively associated with several communicative responses to jealousy (e.g. compensatory restoration, negative affect expression, showing signs of possession, and derogation of competitors) that attempt to strengthen a relationship. Rumination is also associated with responses that are counterproductive. Despite efforts to restore relational intimacy, rumination sustains uncertainty, which thereby forms a cycle where rumination is sustained. Rumination intensifies over time and serves as a constant reminder to the threat to the relationship, resulting in increased negative affect. This negative affect is associated with destructive responses to jealousy including violent communication and violence towards objects. Finally, jealous rumination is associated with relational distress and counterproductive responses to jealousy.

Sex differences in jealous emotions and communication. Women generally experience more hurt, sadness, anxiety, and confusion than men, perhaps because they often blame themselves for the jealous situation. Conversely, men have been found to deny jealous feelings and focus on increasing their self-esteem. Generally speaking, women tend to be more focused on the relationship, while men tend to be more focused on individual concerns. In communicative responses, women tend to use integrative communication, express negative affect, enhance their appearance, and use counterjealousy induction more often than jealous men. Jealous men more often contact the rival, restrict the partner's access to potential rivals, and give gifts and spend money on the partner. Jealous men also engage in dangerous behaviors, such as getting drunk and engaging in promiscuous sex with others. Analysis from an evolutionary perspective would suggest that men focus on competing for mates and displaying resources (e.g., material goods to suggest financial security), while women focus on creating and enhancing social bonds and showcasing their beauty.

Deception. Deception is a major relational transgression that often leads to feelings of betrayal and distrust between relational partners. Deception violates relational rules and is considered to be a negative violation of expectations. Most people expect friends, relational partners, and even strangers to be truthful most of the time. If people expected most conversations to be untruthful, talking and communicating with others would simply be unproductive and too difficult. On a given day, it is likely that most human beings will either deceive or be deceived by another person. A significant amount of deception occurs between romantic and relational partners.

Types. Deception includes several types of communications or omissions that serve to distort or omit the complete truth. Deception itself is intentionally managing verbal and/or nonverbal messages so that the message receiver will believe in a way that the message sender knows is false. Intent is critical with regard to deception. Intent differentiates between deception and an honest mistake. The Interpersonal Deception Theory explores the interrelation between communicative context and sender and receiver cognitions and behaviors in deceptive exchanges.

Five primary forms of deception consist of the following: Lies: making up information or giving information that is the opposite or very different from the truth. Euivocations: making an indirect, ambiguous, or contradictory statement.
Concealments: omitting information that is important or relevant to the given context, or engaging in behavior that helps hide relevant information. Exaggeration: overstatement or stretching the truth to a degree. Understatement: minimization or downplaying aspects of the truth.

Motives: There are three primary motivations for deceptions in close relationships. Partner-focused motives: using deception to avoid hurting the partner, helping the partner to enhance or maintain his or her self-esteem, avoid worrying the partner, and protecting the partner's relationship with a third party. Partner-motivated deception can sometimes be viewed as socially polite and relationally beneficial. Self-focused motives: using deception to enhance or protect their self-image, wanting to shield themselves from anger, embarrassment, or criticism. Self-focused deception is generally perceived as a more serious transgression than partner-focused deception because the deceiver is acting for selfish reasons rather than for the good of the relationship. Relationship-focused motives: using deception to limit relationship harm by avoiding conflict or relational trauma. Relationally motivated deception can be beneficial to a relationship, and other times it can be harmful by further complicating matters.

Detection. Deception detection between relational partners is extremely difficult, unless a partner tells a blatant or obvious lie or contradicts something the other partner knows to be true. While it is difficult to deceive a partner over a long period of time, deception often occurs in day-to-day conversations between relational partners. Detecting deception is difficult because there are no known completely reliable indicators of deception. Deception, however, places a significant cognitive load on the deceiver. He or she must recall previous statements so that his or her story remains consistent and believable. As a result, deceivers often leak important information both verbally and nonverbally. Deception and its detection is a complex, fluid, and cognitive process that is based on the context of the message exchange. The Interpersonal Deception Theory posits that interpersonal deception is a dynamic, iterative process of mutual influence between a sender, who manipulates information to depart from the truth, and a receiver, who attempts to establish the validity of the message. A deceiver's actions are interrelated to the message receiver's actions. It is during this exchange that the deceiver will reveal verbal and nonverbal information about deceit. Some research has found that there are some cues that may be correlated with deceptive communication, but scholars frequently disagree about the effectiveness of many of these cues to serve as reliable indicators. Noted deception scholar Aldert Vrij even states that there is no nonverbal behavior that is uniquely associated with deception. As previously stated, a specific behavioral indicator of deception does not exist. There are, however, some nonverbal behaviors that have been found to be correlated with deception. Vrij found that examining a "cluster" of these cues was a significantly more reliable indicator of deception than examining a single cue. In terms of perceptions about the significance of deceiving a partner, women and men typically differ in their beliefs about deception. Women view deception as a much more profound relational transgression than men. Additionally, women rate lying in general as a less acceptable behavior than men. Finally, women are much more likely to view any act of lying as significant (regardless of the subject matter) and more likely to report negative emotional reactions to lying.

Truth bias. The truth bias significantly impairs the ability of relational partners to detect deception. In terms of deception, a truth bias reflects a tendency to judge more messages as truths than lies, independent of their actual veracity. When judging message veracity, the truth bias contributes to an overestimate of the actual number of truths relative to the base rate of actual truths. The truth bias is especially strong within close relationships. People are highly inclined to trust the communications of others and are unlikely to question the relational partner unless faced with a major deviation of behavior that forces a reevaluation. When attempting to detect deceit from a familiar person or relational partner, a large amount of information about the partner is brought to mind. This information essentially overwhelms the receiver's cognitive ability to detect and process any cues to deception. It is somewhat easier to detect deception in strangers, when less information about that person is brought to mind.

Hurtful messages. Messages that convey negative feelings or rejection lead to emotions such as hurt and anger. Hurtful messages are associated with less satisfying relationships. Intentionally hurtful messages are among the most serious, as perceived by a partner. Unlike physical pain that usually subsides over time, hurtful messages and hurt feelings often persist for a long period of time and be recalled even years after the event. The interpersonal damage caused by hurtful messages is sometimes permanent. People are more likely to be upset if they believe their relational partner said something to deliberately hurt him or her. Some of the most common forms of hurtful messages include evaluations, accusations, and informative statements. Feeling devalued is a central component of hurtful messages. Similar to verbally aggressive messages, hurtful messages that are stated intensely may be viewed as particularly detrimental. The cliché "It's not what you say, but how you say it" is very applicable with regard to recipients' appraisals of hurtful messages. Females tend to experience more hurt than males in response to hurtful messages. Repairing the damage.

Conceptualizing forgiveness. Individuals tend to experience a wide array of complex emotions following a relational transgression. These emotions are shown to have utility as an initial coping mechanism. For example, fear can result in a protective orientation following a serious transgression; sadness results in contemplation and reflection  while disgust causes us to repel from its source. However, beyond the initial situation these emotions can be detrimental to one’s mental and physical state. Consequently, forgiveness is viewed as a more productive means of dealing with the transgression along with engaging the one who committed the transgression. Forgiving is not the act of excusing or condoning. Rather, it is the process whereby negative emotions are transformed into positive emotions for the purpose of bringing emotional normalcy to a relationship. In order to achieve this transformation the offended must forgo retribution and claims for retribution. McCullough, Worthington, and Rachal (1997) defined forgiveness as a, “set of motivational changes whereby one becomes (a) decreasingly motivated to retaliate against an offending relationship partner, (b) decreasingly motivated to maintain estrangement from the offender, and (c) increasingly motivated by conciliation and goodwill for the offender, despite the offender’s hurtful actions”. In essence, relational partners choose constructive behaviors that show an emotional commitment and willingness to sacrifice in order to achieve a state of forgiveness. Dimensions of forgiveness. The link between reconciliation and forgiveness involves exploring two dimensions of forgiveness: intrapsychic and interpersonal. The intrapsychic dimension relates to the cognitive processes and interpretations associated with a transgression (i.e. internal state), whereas interpersonal forgiveness is the interaction between relational partners. Total forgiveness is defined as including both the intrapsychic and interpersonal components which brings about a return to the conditions prior to the transgression. To only change one’s internal state is silent forgiveness, and only having interpersonal interaction is considered hollow forgiveness. However, some scholars contend that these two dimensions (intrapsychic and interpersonal) are independent as the complexities associated with forgiveness involve gradations of both dimensions. For example, a partner may not relinquish negative emotions yet choose to remain in the relationship because of other factors (e.g., children, financial concerns, etc.). Conversely, one may grant forgiveness and release all negative emotions directed toward their partner, and still exit the relationship because trust cannot be restored. Given this complexity, research has explored whether the transformation of negative emotions to positive emotions eliminates negative affect associated with a given offense. The conclusions drawn from this research suggest that no correlation exists between forgiveness and unforgiveness. Put simply, while forgiveness may be granted for a given transgression, the negative affect may not be reduced a corresponding amount. Determinants of forgiveness, Predictors of Forgiveness

McCullough et al. (1998) outlined predictors of forgiveness into four broad categories: Personality traits of both partners, Relationship quality, Nature of the transgression, Social-cognitive variables.

While personality variables and characteristics of the relationship are preexisting to the occurrence of forgiveness, nature of the offense and social-cognitive determinants become apparent at the time of the transgression.

Personality traits of both partners. Forgivingness is defined as one’s general tendency to forgive transgressions However, this tendency differs from forgiveness which is a response associated with a specific transgression. Listed below are characteristics of the forgiving personality as described by Emmons (2000).

Does not seek revenge; effectively regulates negative affect. Strong desire for a relationship free of conflict. Shows empathy toward offender. Does not personalize hurt associated with transgression

In terms of personality traits, agreeableness and neuroticism (i.e., instability, anxiousness, aggression) show consistency in predicting forgivingness and forgiveness. Since forgiveness requires one to discard any desire for revenge, a vengeful personality tends to not offer forgiveness and may continue to harbor feelings of vengeance long after the transgression occurred.

Research has shown that agreeableness is inversely correlated with motivations for revenge and avoidance, as well as positively correlated with benevolence. As such, one who demonstrates the personality trait of agreeableness is prone to forgiveness as well as has a general disposition of forgivingness. Conversely, neuroticism was positively correlated with avoidance and vengefulness, but negatively correlated with benevolence. Consequently, a neurotic personality is less apt to forgive or to have a disposition of forgivingness.

Though the personality traits of the offended have a predictive value of forgiveness, the personality of the offender also has an effect on whether forgiveness is offered. Offenders who show sincerity when seeking forgiveness and are persuasive in downplaying the impact of the transgression will have a positive effect on whether the offended will offer forgiveness.

Narcissistic personalities, for example, may be categorized as persuasive transgressors. This is driven by the narcissist to downplay their transgressions, seeing themselves as perfect and seeking to save face at all costs. Such a dynamic suggests that personality determinants of forgiveness may involve not only the personality of the offended, but also that of the offender.
Relationship quality

The quality of a relationship between offended and offending partners can affect whether forgiveness is both sought and given. In essence, the more invested one is in a relationship, the more prone they are to minimize the hurt associated with transgressions and seek reconciliation.

McCullough et al. (1998) provides seven reasons behind why those in relationships will seek to forgive:
High investment in relationship (e.g., children, joint finances, etc.)
Views relationship as long term commitment
Have high degree of common interests
Is selfless in regard to their partner
Willingness to take viewpoint of partner (i.e. empathy)
Assumes motives of partner are in best interest of relationship (e.g., criticism is taken as constructive feedback)
Willingness to apologize for transgressions

Relationship maintenance activities are a critical component to maintaining high quality relationships. While being heavily invested tends to lead to forgiveness, one may be in a skewed relationship where the partner who is heavily invested is actually under benefitted. This leads to an over benefitted partner who is likely to take the relationship for granted and will not be as prone to exhibit relationship repair behaviors. As such, being mindful of the quality of a relationship will best position partners to address transgressions through a stronger willingness to forgive and seek to normalize the relationship.

Another relationship factor that affects forgiveness is history of past conflict. If past conflicts ended badly (i.e., reconciliation/forgiveness was either not achieved or achieved after much conflict), partners will be less prone to seek out or offer forgiveness. As noted earlier, maintaining a balanced relationship (i.e. no partner over/under benefitted) has a positive effect on relationship quality and tendency to forgive. In that same vein, partners are more likely to offer forgiveness if their partners had recently forgiven them for a transgression. However, if a transgression is repeated resentment begins to build which has an adverse effect on the offended partner’s desire to offer forgiveness.

Nature of the transgression. The most notable feature of a transgression to have an effect on forgiveness is the seriousness of the offense. Some transgressions are perceived as being so serious that they are considered unforgivable. To counter the negative affect associated with a severe transgression, the offender may engage in repair strategies to lessen the perceived hurt of the transgression. The offender’s communication immediately following a transgression has the greatest predictive value on whether forgiveness will be granted. Consequently, offenders who immediately apologize, take responsibility and show remorse have the greatest chance of obtaining forgiveness from their partner. Further, self-disclosure of a transgression yields much greater results than if a partner is informed of the transgression through a third party.[ By taking responsibility for one’s actions and being forthright through self-disclosure of an offense, partners may actually form closer bonds from the reconciliation associated with a serious transgression. As noted in the section on personality, repeated transgressions cause these relationship repair strategies to have a more muted effect as resentment begins to build and trust erodes.

Social-cognitive variables. Attributions of responsibility for a given transgression may have an adverse effect on forgiveness. Specifically, if a transgression is viewed as intentional or malicious, the offended partner is less likely to feel empathy and forgive. Based on the notion that forgiveness is driven primarily by empathy, the offender must accept responsibility and seek forgiveness immediately following the transgression, as apologies have shown to elicit empathy from the offended partner. The resulting feelings of empathy elicited in the offended partner may cause them to better relate to the guilt and loneliness their partner may feel as a result of the transgression. In this state of mind, the offended partner is more likely to seek to normalize the relationship through granting forgiveness and restoring closeness with their partner.

Remedial strategies for the offender. Prior sections offered definitions of forgiveness along with determinants of forgiveness from the perspective of the partner who has experienced the hurtful transgression. As noted earlier, swift apologies and utilization of repair strategies by the offender have the greatest likelihood of eliciting empathy from the offended and ultimately receiving forgiveness for the transgression. The sections below address remedial strategies offenders may use to facilitate a state in which the offended more likely to offer forgiveness and seek to normalize the relationship.

Apologies/concessions. Most common of the remedial strategies, an apology is the most straightforward means by which to admit responsibility, express regret, and seek forgiveness. Noted earlier, apologies are most effective if provided in a timely manner and involve a self-disclosure. Apologies occurring after discovery of a transgression by a third party are much less effective. Though apologies can range from a simple, “I’m sorry” to more elaborate forms, offenders are most successful when offering more complex apologies to match the seriousness of the transgression.

Excuses/justifications. Rather than accepting responsibility for a transgression through the form of an apology, a transgressor who explains why they engaged in a behavior is engaging in excuses or justifications. While excuses and justifications aim to minimize blame on the transgressor, the two address blame minimization from completely opposite perspectives. Excuses attempt to minimize blame by focusing on a transgressor’s inability to control their actions (e.g., “How would I have known my exgirlfriend was going to be at the party.”) or displace blame on a third party (e.g., “I went to lunch with my exgirlfriend because I did not want to hurt her feelings.”). Conversely, a justification minimizes blame by suggesting that actions surrounding the transgression were justified or that the transgression was not severe. For example, a transgressor may justify having lunch with a past romantic interest, suggesting to their current partner that the lunch meeting was of no major consequence (e.g., “We are just friends.”).

Refusals. Refusals are where a transgressor claims no blame for the perceived transgression. This is a departure from apologies and excuses/justifications which involve varying degrees of blame acceptance. In the case of a refusal, the transgressor believes that they have not done anything wrong. Such a situation points out the complexity of relational transgressions. Perception of both partners must be taken into account when recognizing and addressing transgressions. For example, Bob and Sally have just started to date, but have not addressed whether they are mutually exclusive. When Bob finds out that Sally has been on a date with someone else, he confronts Sally. Sally may engage in refusal of blame because Bob and Sally had not explicitly noted whether they were mutually exclusive. The problem with these situations is that the transgressor shows no sensitivity to the offended. As such, the offended is less apt to exhibit empathy which is key towards forgiveness. As such, research has shown that refusals tend to aggravate situations, rather than serve as a meaningful repair strategy.

Appeasement/positivity. Appeasement is used to offset hurtful behavior through the transgressor ingratiating themselves in ways such as promising never to commit the hurtful act or being overly kind to their partner. Appeasement may elicit greater empathy from the offended, through soothing strategies exhibited by the transgressor (e.g., complimenting, being more attentive, spending greater time together). However, the danger of appeasement is the risk that the actions of transgressor will be viewed as being artificial. For example, sending your partner flowers every day resulting from an infidelity you have committed, may be viewed as downplaying the severity of the transgression if the sending of flowers is not coupled with other soothing strategies that cause greater immediacy.

Avoidance/evasion. Avoidance involves the transgressor making conscious efforts to ignore the transgression (also referred to as “silence”). Avoidance can be effective after an apology is sought and forgiveness is granted (i.e., minimizing discussion around unpleasant subjects once closure has been obtained). However, total avoidance of a transgression where the hurt of the offended is not recognized and forgiveness is not granted can result in further problems in the future. As relational transgressions tend to develop the nature of the relationship through drawing of new rules/boundaries, avoidance of a transgression does not allow for this development. Not surprisingly, avoidance is ineffective as a repair strategy, particularly for instances in which infidelity has occurred.

Relationship talk. Relationship talk is a remediation strategy that focuses on discussing the transgression in the context of the relationship. Aune et al. (1998) identified two types of relationship talk, relationship invocation and metatalk. Relationship invocation involves using the relationship as a backdrop for a discussion of the transgression. For example, “We are too committed to this relationship to let it fail.”, or “Our relationship is so much better than any of my previous relationships.”. Metatalk involves discussing the effect of the transgression on the relationship. For example, infidelity may cause partners to redefine rules of the relationship and reexamine the expectations of commitment each partner expects from the other.

Summary and application of concepts. Relational transgressions are a part of any relationship. In each instance, partners must weigh the severity of the transgression against how much they value the relationship. In some cases, trust can be so severely damaged that repair strategies are fruitless. With each transgression both transgressor and victim assume risks. The transgressor’s efforts at reconciliation may be rejected by the victim, which results in loss of face and potentially an avenue of attack by the victim. If the victim offers forgiveness, there is risk that the transgressor may view the forgiveness as a personality trait that may prompt future transgressions (e.g., “I’ll be forgiven by my partner just like every other time”).

These risks aside, promptly engaging in repair strategies helps to ensure the relationship recovers from transgressions. Addressing relational transgressions can be a very painful process. Utilizing repair strategies can have a transformative effect on the relationship through redefining rules and boundaries. An added benefit can be gained through the closeness that can be realized as partners address transgressions. Engaging in relationship talk such as metatalk prompts broader discussions about what each partner desires from the relationship and aligns expectations. Such efforts can mitigate the effects of future transgressions, or even minimize the frequency and severity of transgressions.

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The Kingdom of God Is Within You, abolish violence, even the defensive kind, and to give up revenge.

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