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-   -   How do you know when it's love and not NRE? (http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=26186)

Vicki82 08-03-2012 07:01 PM

How do you know when it's love and not NRE?
Just hoping to hear from others' experiences.

GalaGirl 08-03-2012 07:07 PM

You mean like neuroscience? That's a buzz.

You mean like limerance?

You mean like my own experience?

I like the crushing from afar -- the buzz. I know it's just crushies so... it's fun and harmless.

If I want to build serious relationship? I spend around a year there becoming acquainted, bonding as friends, enjoying crushies along the way, see what more is there that could lead to a stronger bond. You kinda CHOOSE to be with someone and commit to them.

So around a year or so if I have chosen to go there, I have pretty much chosen to go there. I'm committed to shared dreams/goals and I find ways to woo/rewoo person to keep getting the buzz. :)


opalescent 08-03-2012 07:08 PM


If you search the forum, you will find a LOT on NRE. What it is, how long it may last, how it is different from other emotions, like love. If you take a look at what others have posted, you might find an answer to your question. And if that doesn't happen, you will certainly find other, more detailed questions to ask about the topic.

Vicki82 08-03-2012 07:08 PM

Yeah, looking for others' experience. Especially LD but with frequent contact.

We're only F2F maybe once a month but spend hours each day talking. How do I know when my feelings are real?

Opal, I have asked detailed questions. It seemed like my threads were mostly me talking to myself :( I got a couple of good replies but I had been hoping to get some help. So I thought by asking something more general, I'd get more replies.

Castalia 08-03-2012 07:16 PM

Interesting question and one I have thought about A LOT. The difference between love and intense feelings/nre or a crush.
I read a sign once that said that if you have feelings for someone for more than six months it's no longer a crush. ha, I searched and searched for any truth to it. never found any, not that it was a big surprise.
Any way to answer your question, I believe love is like faith. Deep down you just know, feel it with all that you are.
When you know someone really well, positives and negatives, and want to be with them regardless it's more than just nre.
These are all just opinions of course and a topic I could go on and on and on about, but it's the general idea.

nycindie 08-03-2012 07:38 PM

You know it's love when you still feel a thrill at being with the person even after you've experienced their bad breath in the morning, their moments of grouchiness, bad jokes, ratty bathrobe, and all their faults.

LovingRadiance 08-03-2012 11:00 PM

Combo of GG and Nyc's response,

if you haven't put in the time to EXPERIENCE their bad behaviors and bad habits-you don't know it's love.
It could be, but you don't know.

NRE is a combination of chemicals overflowing in your body-much like smoking crack or doing ecstacy. It feels GREAT (it's designed to). But, it isn't based upon any real compatibility of lifestyles-it's your bodies natural design for motivating procreation.

For me, if I haven't put at least a year in-I won't even consider the possibility that it's more than attraction and NRE.

There's nothing innately wrong with NRE-it's just that it's not dependable. It will wear off (and often times return again! But, we tend to call that ORE).

Something to look at if you are using your question in order to decide the viability of a LONG TERM COMMITMENT (some people like to hop from NRE experience to NRE experience and you don't say specifically why you are wondering);

is what are the FACTS of how you/they operate and are those things compatible when considered for themselves, versus for each other.

I NEED a lot of light (depression issues).
I can't live well with someone who NEEDS the house to be kept dark (a friend has serious health issues due to war injuries that does require this).

I sleep best with LOTS of blankets and the temp around 70-72 F. A partner who sleeps best with something over 75 or under 68 is going to be a problem if we expect to sleep together regularly.

I have kids.
Someone who hates kids ain't going to be compatible with me.

I have ADD issues.
Someone who flies by the seat of their pants in everything-isn't healthy for me.

Etc. (they need considered opposite too-not just self needs, but the other persons needs-I'm just flipping out examples off the top of my head).


clearly it depends upon what type of relationship. Many of these would be non-issues as long as we aren't going to live together-others would matter regardless.

Someone who is only available at night-isn't going to work for me-cause I'm almost never available at night. ;)

CherryBlossomGirl 08-04-2012 12:43 AM

I somewhat equate NRE with the oldskool term infatuation. It's that giddy, highschool, head over heels feeling that may or may not actualize as love down the line. The only test of whether NRE is based in reality, or just a mix of heady dopamine and fantasies is time, in my opinion. Over time, you get to know a whole person, and discover more and more if you are truly compatible.

I totally agree that NRE has been surpassed when you see all sides of someone, and you still care deeply for them, and can accept and love all of them. For me, this is somewhere between eight/nine months and a year and a half.

For me NRE feels unstable, and love feels more stable. NRE feels more like a sugar high, and love feels more like a nourishing meal.

Drifter 08-04-2012 12:57 PM

'How do I know I am in Love? And not in Lust, or in Longing? Although all these can also life comfortably(?) with Love.

In some ways, at least in my experience, a quick answer is - If you have to ask, it's not love. I think Louis Armstrong meant much the same when asked 'what is Jazz' - 'If you have to ask' came the reply, 'you ain't never gonna know' or something like that.

I believe there is a lot to this point. I spent years and several relationships wondering, agonising, convincing myself, and at times believing I was in love. Then I met someone and fell in love. All the questioning doubts no longer applied, all the romantic stories made sense. I didn't choose this feeling, or work it out. I 'just' felt it. It was there and it was something different from the loving relationships of my past. This was a new experience for me, a new emotion - 'real' love.
So to me there is something about love that is compelling (if we accept it) and therefore has the capacity to override more logical, sensible considerations like duration - 'it's only been 6 weeks, it can't be love', distance or some other incompatablity like financial status, nothing in common, etc. .

The trick is knowing yourself. I was blessed (cursed?) with an experience that left me with no doubt about the existence of deep love or whether I was feeling it (I was). And so that feeling, until I experience something else (which may be happening, watch this space...) is my benchmark for love. If it happens I know, without question,

But i also understand being unsure. Louis was only half right. And that NRE as its called can sure look and feel alot like love. If I am unsure, then I try to be honest with myself - simple but not easy - and see if I can filter out the bubbly giddiness, the crazed hornyness (if that is applicable) the 'i want to spend loads of my time with you, we fit together so well, this is amazing!' and if i am left with 'that benchmark feeling' then I am in love.:)

castle33 08-04-2012 05:40 PM

@ loving radiance...

i'm going to go smoke some crack and fall in love :)

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