What Does It Mean When We Say ‘I Love You’

What Does It Mean When We Say ‘I Love You’

What Does It Mean When We Say ‘I Love You’ 1920 1280 Gary Ruelas, D.O., Ph.D.

Why We May Say ‘I Love You’ and Why We May Not

So many times we may spontaneously hear or say those three most powerful and possibly awkward words; I LOVE YOU. As many times as they are spoken there are as many times in which we hesitate to say them or all together do not say these words at all.

I have mentioned before that the word LOVE conjures up so many meanings that it is almost like mentioning a form of politics, religion and or the word “GOD.” These words may elicit many different reactions, perhaps even far away from the intention of the sender of the message. So, we will delicately dance through these words and attempt to offer perspective that may enhance our potential to connect to one another. Some of the different usages of these words are for an intangible energy of connection, perhaps divine (spiritual) or an emotional expression (usually with attachment) or a physical attraction (usually desire). We can experience all at once or just focus on one plane of experience. However, our hope is to expand our connections to one and other offering us all a peace of mind.

So, let’s go back to the word LOVE. Let’s think of some of context in which it may be expressed. In some situations, it can be just an acknowledgement of connection like a ‘Hi’ or ‘Bye’ or ‘You’re special to me (I love you)’. The expression may also be found in intimate moments of an awkward passion, like a first-time expression of “I love you” while hoping to hear the reciprocal “I love you” to confirm there is a synchrony of connection of some sort, (UGH, awkward if we don’t hear back at that time). There is also at a time of passion a depth of expression “I really love you!” just an outpouring of perhaps our soul onto another. And then there are those moments of maybe saying goodbye at a point of physical departure someone we have been or are connected to, a loved one, a spouse, friend, child that is now leaving the area, or leaving us physically, maybe for a prolonged period of time, maybe only briefly, but we don’t know… so we see them wave and say “I love you” and they say “I love you too,” recognizing we are all together.

But what are we really saying, what are we attempting to convey embedded in these three words. For the sake of this brief discussion let’s assume it is an expression of an intangible bond, that we innately move into and are better with it than without it.

We as humans long for connection from conception with a maternal form and or familial bonding to finding a mate, perhaps having a family etc. So, when we use those three magical words, we are expressing our desire and acknowledge a heartfelt connection as well as letting the other know we are present and available for this synchrony.

Just the awareness and expression implies that we accept that the invisible and intangible power exist and that this “energy” is special (perhaps divine) and connects us in ways we may not even think about. Not only does it connect, but we are we pulled into it over and over again almost compelled to go back to that basic union and then miraculous experience may occur.

So why not jump into that river, ocean of energy, that when we are in it the experience we have is beyond logic. WHY, don’t we simply JUMP, well its FEAR, plain and simple.

And our greatest FEAR – ironically – is being alone. Even though we innately desire to be connected as One, we ultimately fear the opposite and ironically stay in the experience we fear (somewhat). Another fear of pure connection is that it is not true. And then the FEAR that I will hurt, meaning ‘I’ll be alone and disconnected again’. All of which can be true, based on our belief of being alone is what we become accustomed to and is our new normal. However, the TRUE LOVE being referred to here NEVER ENDS, but we turn from it. So, we create by our beliefs and thoughts, barriers, and move away into another plane of isolation. We hurt because our mind attaches to the object or form which leaves us, but the experience of true love has no attachment just like the air we breathe. So, if we practice love by giving it away as we receive it (self-compassion) we have the ability to always be with it.
So, it is said, love openly, love freely and all is blessed, hold back and we are all dammed.

Once we recognize and practice a few factors, love is given freely without expectation or conditions. That Love is an energy of connection, we are born with it, we can tap into it at any time. Its free, this type of energy, and it is divine (an energy greater than ourselves) so we give it as we get it. We must tap into it first (self-compassion, more on this later) than we can give it to others. When we experience it in relation to others, we are in pure acceptance of them, often in gratitude, patient, tolerant forgiving all at the same time… We are in experience of what we are giving.

Offer yourself the openness to experience LOVE and then the JOY OF SHARING. PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE saying those three words… say them often and see what happens next.


Gary Ruelas, D.O., Ph.D.

Dr. Ruelas holds doctoral degrees and is licensed to practice in both medicine and psychology. He approaches his patients by gathering and analyzing data differently from other physician’s moving away from a disease model to a holistic functional model. Read Bio

All articles by : Gary Ruelas, D.O., Ph.D.