Let me start by saying, “I love you!”
Many of you would be tempted to respond, in all likelihood, from their analytical left brain, “But you don’t even know me!” That would be fair. Curiously, a wise person answers the above in a heartwarming way. I would love to discover their name and give them credit one day,
“Maybe… but if people can hate for now reason, I can love!”
If anyone of you heard anything more soul-soothing than this simple, yet powerful sentence, about unconditional love, please speak up!
Interestingly, this piece would have never seen the light without the precious contribution of my fellow writer and friend Ali Anani. It is what I would call a spontaneous and genuinely driven collaboration! For this, I am super grateful!
Below was his addition to Part 1 (above) of this essay:
“It seems to me that the fuel of a healthy relationship is unconditional love as an emotion — which transcends romantic love. Nonetheless, its foundation is trust, and building trust is a reciprocated process requiring investment.”
Reading the above I wonder if unconditional love is possible except between a mother to her baby. That is genetic, spontaneous, and is natural. Trust can be gained. It is an asset that grows with time. Unconditional love is limitless, and I wonder if a human with all her/his errs is worthy of unconditional love.
Appealingly, this topic is a big part of why I started writing in the first place!
Breaking the stigmas around mother/infant love, romantic love, friends’ love — you name it — in addition to comparing the selfish love that stems from our insecurities (vehiculated by our caregivers and society as a whole) versus the Universal love has always been one of my very favorite discussions!
It would be important to mention that only a person who awakened their spirit and did some serious psychological inner-work on traumas’ deep wounds, unmet needs, coping mechanisms, and CPTSD/other conditional love outcomes can feel and offer generously the latter kind of love.
Simply put, it requires reconnecting with the True Self and moving from an insecure attachment style to the secure one to some extent.
If mothers’ love was truly unconditional, no kid would have developed an insecure attachment style in the first place, it seems to me. Our style is nothing but a response to how our caregivers showed up — mainly during the first six years of our life. The bond we form with them along with different unhealthy patterns we adopt is what we continue to repeat in our adulthood in an endless trial to feel loved, accepted, and that we belong.
Many caregivers are kind-hearted and were merely following the notebook when getting married and giving birth to kids while still diving into life with their heavy baggage preventing them from fulfilling their job effectively. They didn’t know any better, and when realizing it, they are capable of taking ownership of their shortcomings and changing what they can change if time still allows it. Worst-case scenario, they would support their adult kids wholeheartedly in their transformational journey to break with what they have created. Those ones have all my respect and adoration!
Many others, though, are antagonistic personalities. If they have kids at all, it is for their public persona and to fake normalcy. This second group cannot love at all: neither unconditionally nor conditionally. They feed on their kids as another resource of supply, no matter how counterintuitive it may sound.
On the other hand, if we do the work and move to the securely attached folks and servant leaders who contribute to our interdependent world, then we unleash limitless amounts of unconditional love for the whole Universe, not only fellow humans!
Mind you, this Universal love includes perpetrators for a simple reason: what we truly dislike and frustrates us to extreme levels is their behavior and who they are in this physical realm.
The good news is that we can still feel pity and unconditional love for their lost soul, keeping faith it may find its way back after as many journeys as it would be judged necessary!
In summary, when I refer to unconditional love as the fuel of a relationship, I mean a healthy one where there is reciprocity and where the two parties are emotionally mature and self-aware enough to be able to build the trust!
Still, unconditional love can be granted to anyone and anything while there is no relationship at all. It just is!
On a last note, unconditional love is accessible when the person has a clear sense of self, and enough amounts of self-consideration, self-compassion, and self-love, I suppose!