Do you have one of those people in your life who showers you with attention? The friend who brings you your favorite coffee every morning. The friend who is over-the-top complimentary to you—which is appreciated but always feels like there is a catch to it.
Oh wait, is this you?
The catch is the expectation that is created that everyone is going to return this attention back to you. That you will be the recipient of such love. That you will feel “enough” from this expected attention.
When the love bomb is not returned to you–as you expected–you are disappointed. Sad. Maybe even angry. And once again you have proven to the world that no one appreciates you.
The truth is, you love bomber, you are setting everyone up to disappoint you so you can be a martyr.
Ouch. Please stay with me through this because I’m just revealing a numbing behavior you are using to protect your heart.
I know you think you are a genuine person as you are doing this but really you are hurting inside more than you realize. So you love bomb others to protect yourself from this painful truth. So no one can really hurt you again. When you are the martyr this gives you the excuse as to why people can’t get close to you. You stay in control the entire time. Your friends are either going to like you and appreciate you (after all you do so much for them) or they are never going to appreciate you, no one is ever going to appreciate you, so now you get to share—or whine—to the newer people you meet how you don’t have friends because you are unappreciated.
You are actually love bombing your friends to keep your vulnerability in your control. Because no one can possibly reciprocate on an equal level. You can play the martyr and still keep your vulnerability in control. And be a hero in the process.
A lonely and sad hero though. You really desire to be loved and known equally in friendships.
A friend of the love bomber is the Facebook friend who uses memes to communicate the same thing. Such as this one:
I may have found that in my newsfeed and think it may be directed at me. But I also know this person could have directed it to just about everyone else in her life because that is her numbed-self speaking to a tee. I know her wounds. But she chooses numbing behaviors over healing. Her numbing behaviors actually puts her on a high horse and she doesn’t even see it.
Friendships put us into vulnerability. We are going to get hurt by our friends. If you’ve made it to the age of 19 you’ve already learned the painful lessons that friendships have seasons. And not all of those seasons are summer. And not all of those seasons mean that something is wrong with you. You may or may not have been rejected. If you were rejected, it may not have been because of something you did or something you are. Or maybe it was because of something you did. Learn from it. Grow. You will be a better friend to someone next time. Because there is always a next time in friendships. There is always a next season.
And this is the deeper down truth that you need to know. You are worthy of connection. You are worthy of love. You are worthy of belonging.
Face your vulnerability. There is beauty in you. Beauty seeps out when your decisions of bravery define you. When you choose vulnerability over numbing. When you allow the beauty of pain to shape you.
Pain has a Holy Spirit magic way of making you beautiful.
You are worthy of beautiful friendships.
(If you want to know more about how pain has the Holy Spirit magic way of making you beautiful, start reading here and then there is a whole lot more on this blog.)