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Love vs. Obsession

Love and obsession are two powerful emotional journeys that can both enhance your life. At the same token, when it is misused and abused it can shatter your whole world. To me love is transcending and obsession is a blinding emotion that can weaken a person. In the words of my bestie R.B., being obsessed with something is not healthy because you overlook the dangers that come with that obsession. Or as my close friend Z.R. advised me: When you love someone, you want them around you. It’s because you enjoy them as a person. However, when you are obsessed you need that person, because you are addicted to their presence.

Hell, another way to simply answer the question as to what's the difference? It's a restraining order! Obsession is something that is unconsciously confused with love and will cause someone to act out in a harmful way. Take for example Ike and Tina Turner. Tina was a means to an end. Ike saw dollar signs. He saw a sheltered bird that was raw and vulnerable and he preyed on that. He saw something he could control and use for his benefit. He had a hidden agenda. When it seemed as if he was losing control, what did he do? He used physical and mental abuse on Tina. When she tried to get away the first time, he damn near killed her. When she finally left, he still tried to exert his power and hold that he used to have on her. That’s obsession. That’s a perfect example of obsession.

Love will enhance. Obsession will control. Look at the Obamas or Ossie Davis and Ruby Dee. Two couples whose marriage lasted a long time. They speak highly of one another, they encourage and support one another, and they rarely not mention one another whenever they are in conversation. The way the walk when they are in each other’s presence or the glee in their eyes when their eyes catches each other gaze; you can just feel the love. Two people who are each other’s help meet. Two people who are the strength for the other’s failure. Two people who went from being separate to mentally, physically, and emotionally intertwined…that’s love people!

A good friend of mine, L. Paul, provided me with her opinion of love vs. obsession. She stated: Love always means caring, supportive and giving. Obsession is only a crazy idea where a person cannot think in an affectionate manner... Love has no limits or boundaries, and there is complete freedom. Well, obsession is something that has its own limitations, and it is a condition where one feels like they have no freedom....Obsession is also shrouded with jealousy. Love is always pure, and it is the understanding between individuals.

In good relationships, everything just unfolds effortlessly (well, 99% of the time within a good relationship is effortless with the occasional 1% of the time where you should put in effort to make sure things stay in a good place). You don’t feel like you’re walking on eggshells, worrying that you might screw something up.  You don’t feel like you must make it work.  You don’t feel like you’re suffocating, wishing and hoping to finally get some sweet relief and get to breathe. You aren’t afraid to lose them. In fact, you never even think about possibly losing them because you don’t feel you need to possess them to experience the love you have for them. Love is not meant to be a struggle. Yes, when it comes to a lot of the songs that are released; it sounds like it’s supposed to be.  Yes, movies make it seem like it’s supposed to be.  All that crap is lies, love is meant to be effortless not a tug of war.

Another way to describe obsession is to refer to it as a fixation. Fixation is not fun. It does not feel good. It does feel very urgent, very important, and very stressful. When you’re fixated on someone, it feels more like you’re suffocating. It feels like you need them. It seems as if you must have them treat you a certain way, give you a certain relationship title, or somehow prove their commitment to you. You feel like until you have this, you are not happy and will not be happy. When you’re fixated on someone, your relationship ceases to be about enjoyment and effortlessness.

There is a devastatingly fine line between love and obsession and in this case, the man you are so wild about might just be obsessed with you. Love is a healthy emotion that grows between two people once they’ve invested time and energy into getting to really know one another, flaws, pet peeves and all. Obsession is different. In the beginning, it may feel a lot like love. It makes your heart race and you can think of almost nothing else except the other person. Obsession is an unhealthy emotion that becomes more and more suffocating over time.

When two people fall in love, they maintain their individual identities and interests. They are not threatened when their partner elects to spend time with family or friends without always including them. They are happy for and proud of their partner’s accomplishments, even when those accomplishments are exclusive of the relationship. With obsession, it becomes nearly impossible to be without one another. The obsessive partner feels a physical need to be with the object of their obsession every day and to know exactly where they are and who they are with whenever they are not together. Negative feelings such as jealousy and paranoia begin to creep into the relationship. The obsessive individual suspects that their partner may be cheating or that everything they do or say is somehow a reflection of how they feel about them.

An obsessive person will spend inordinate amounts of time trying to please their partner in an ongoing effort to assure that the partner does not want to cheat on or leave them. They may place multiple phone calls, send countless texts or emails all in one day. They may write poems or songs to the object of their obsession. They make attempts to spend every unoccupied moment with them, often making plans well in advance to assure that every moment can be accounted for.

I am someone who loves movies. Movies have always provided me with whatever emotion or experience that I needed at a particular moment. With the topics of love and obsession; check out some of the below titles. I think they will give you an additional example of love and obsession, along with some wonderful entertainment.


1. Obsessed

2. Misery

3. The Number 23

4. The Boy

5. Prom Night


1. The Notebook

2. Love and Basketball

3. Dear John

4. Sweet Home Alabama

5. Love Jones

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” ~Lao Tzu

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