9 Differences Between Real Love And Fake Love

You might feel like the connection you’ve found with that special someone is totally authentic, but how can you really tell? The last thing you want to do is waste your time, love, and energy on someone who doesn’t deserve it, so here’s how to spot the differences between real and fake love.

  1. Fake love always has an agenda. Real and true love exists just because. Fake love usually has some kind of motive behind it. People use others all the time, and you have to be aware of the signs in order to protect yourself. Whether it’s for money, material things, attention, validation, reputation, or anything else, if you ever feel like the love you’re receiving from someone is conditional because of something your relationship is giving them, get out ASAP.
  2. Fake love shames while real love accepts. In healthy relationships, both people are aiming to help their partner be the best that they can be by encouraging them to always strive for more. However, there’s a difference between inspiring and supporting someone and pushing someone and shaming them into becoming someone they’re not. If you feel like your partner is putting pressure on you to transform yourself or to change for them and making you feel ashamed that you’re not their version of perfect, that’s a serious problem.
  3. Fake love has secrets. Dishonesty in any capacity in a relationship is a total no-no. When love isn’t real, there tends to be a lot of hiding and secrecy involved. It could be about major things or minor ones, but it doesn’t really matter either way. If your partner isn’t being completely honest with you, how can you believe them when they say their love for you is real?
  4. Fake love aims to harm. If your partner tends to go for low blows or seeks to seriously hurt you during an argument or disagreement, that’s a tale-tell sign that it isn’t real love. Real love may hurt you emotionally at some point, but that pain will never be inflicted intentionally. The person who really and truly loves you would never want to hurt you or cause any harm to you. Fake love might intentionally hurt someone they claim to love just to see how loyal you are to them or because it makes them feel more in control of the relationship. Don’t put up with it.
  5. Real love will stick it out when fake love bails. When the going gets tough, real love will brave any and all storms with you because they’re there for the long haul. Fake love may not be able to handle obstacles and hardships and at the first sign of inconvenience, it might pack up and hit the road. Who wants to commit to someone who taps out as soon as they have to fight for anything? You don’t want someone who checks out when things get rough.
  6. Real love isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s, well, real. Who doesn’t love that first stage of dating someone? You’re excited and nervous and you constantly feel as if you’re on cloud nine. That’s wonderful, but the fact of that matter is that life isn’t always going to be like that. Real love won’t pretend like a problem isn’t there or sweep it under the rug as fake love will. Real love will help you face it head-on and without hesitation.
  7. Real love forgives while fake love holds a grudge. At some point or another, one of you will make a mistake. One of you will say something you don’t mean because you’re angry or unintentionally do something that hurts the other person. You’re not perfect and the right person for you won’t expect you to be. Real love means forgiving someone when they apologize and move on without looking back. You can forgive and never forget, but you still shouldn’t use it to hold over someone’s head. Fake love might accept an apology but also might secretly hold onto resentment and anger.
  8. Real love supports goals and dreams while fake love puts itself first. A partner who has a real love for you will want you to go after every dream and goal you have for yourself and will support you on that journey no matter what. They won’t worry about your success or where you end up as long as you’re happy. Fake love harbors jealousy and insecurity and will use that to try and sabotage your progress. Fake love won’t want you to achieve success because they’re afraid of where that will leave them. Will you abandon the relationship for your new life? Will you go out and try to find someone better? They’ll do what they can to keep you down and keep your self-esteem low so that you will never leave them and they can remain on top.
  9. Fake love needs control. Real love trusts. Someone who gives fake love often feels the need to control their partner’s every waking move. They want to know where you are and what you’re doing at every moment of every day. They might disguise it by saying that they just worry or want to keep you safe but there’s a difference between being protective and being controlling. Fake love will want to decide who you hang out with, what you wear, and where you work. Real love has faith and trust in your relationship. They know that you’re dedicated to them and what you have together and don’t feel the need to control you because they know you are still your own person and they respect that.
Shelby is a journalist and fiction writer raised in the South but built for the big city. She's a book nerd (well, an overall nerd, honestly) and coffee addict and obsessed with all things leather and lacy.

She has a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication and Media Studies from Sam Houston State University and worked for her university newspaper, The Houstonian, as well as serving as a producer and part-time entertainment anchor for Cable 7 Huntsville. You can follow her on Twitter @shelby777.