Identifying With The Object Of Our Love
Protective Love is a conditional form of personality love on the Instinctive level. It operates on the premise that providing others safety is the best way to obtain safety for oneself. Since we connect safety to how people appear, it means we constantly seek out the one person who matches our perfect type. It also means we have learned to associate paying attention to others as a way of showing them our love. We can validate if we are doing Protective Love by the degree we feel rejected when others do not pay attention to us (the way we wish). This deep instinctive urge to be appreciated as we are is built within us all, yet in many it is unfulfilled. How people accept us is a pre-emptive form of safety. We also believe that nice-looking partners (who reflect familiar aspects of how we were treated growing up) will adapt to us the way we are willing to adapt to them. Unfortunately, the more we try to pretend to be something others want, the more it drives us into pretenses where we completely pay attention to how they treat us. Instinctively, we seek out people who will fill our need to be reassured and are superficially impressed when we do the same for them. Protective love seems validated when our partners make us feel good about ourselves (at least initially).
Mutual protection is also an unconscious commitment to avoid rejection. In Protective Love, we use fear to connect to others, promising that around us they are safe. Ironically, our use of fear keeps us in scarcity and reinforces the notion that what we have can be lost. Embracing fear also fixates us on protecting what we believe we have, which (in effect) contracts us and our lives. Without realizing it, the more we practice Protective Love, the more we deny the power of our own Life force. This leads us to believe (paradoxically) that every expression of concern, expenditure of effort, and act of kindness is a concrete affirmation of our Love for others. At the core of Protective Love is the inability to reconcile and unify our own physical experience. Instead of our Feelings reflecting our Sensations, we get caught up in denying our Life energy by discounting our Feelings or Sensations or both. The result, we experience great scarcity and fall victim to our attractions, which we do not seem to have any say over.
Protective Love occurs when we demonstrate our love by caretaking someone. For the most part, it arises from an imbalance in our physical body between Sensations and Feelings (where we do not appreciate our own Life energy). Identifying with the need for safety distracts us by making our fear be about someone else (rather than us). Ironically, it does not matter if the person we are projecting love on needs our assistance. We create the experience (sensation or feeling) within ourselves, and because we feel incomplete, are afraid for them. The false assumption is that we need to be there for them because they are not able to be there for themselves. Due to our associations with Feelings being feminine and Sensations being masculine, it is easy to fall into the trap of projecting what we think our partner needs upon them. For example, men might believe they need to watch out for the feelings of their partner, which means they should be in their body, be alert and protect their partner or friend from intrusions of others. Women might believe that since it is easy to wound a manâ€™s pride, they must be careful not to challenge their machismo in any way. Protective Love can become a substitute for the fulfillment of Gender Identity lessons, especially when we do not accept we can take care of ourselves.
Only by accepting our Sensations and Feelings (also known as masculine/feminine gender identity lessons) can we can operate in a complete and integrated manner. We begin to see the inaccuracy and false assumptions of Protective Love. The more doubts we have about our masculine or feminine (and are integrating the opposite energy with our partners), the more we get caught up in gender identity fears. Protective Love demonstrates the degree we unconsciously overcompensate for our lack of self awareness. This is not to suggest that we cannot be supportive of and watch out for friends and partners, yet it does reflect that when we confuse being supportive with loving them, it inadvertently creates an imbalanced result. In other words, Protective Love is a belief that showing up in a particular way makes the experience of love real with some individuals. The problem is that it relates behaviors to a fixed outcome, which may or may not be in alignment with their being. In effect, it makes a mental connection through a proscribed course of behaviors where we expect others to respond to us in a loving way. The problem is when others do not feel the way we want them to. It can create a sense of indebtedness to the person being protected, which requires distancing themselves from the person protecting them.
Main Indicators Of Protective Love
The indicators of Protective Love are Excitement, Jealousy, Titillation and Inertia. Excitement is a form of fantasy-building we do to distract ourselves from our fears. Jealousy is a fixation, attachment or attempt to posses someone because we cannot accept our own Beauty. Titillation is the desire to maintain a state of anticipation in order to prevent the truth of our experience from emerging. Inertia reflects a denial of Aliveness, a fear that our internal imbalances will prevent us from attracting the relationships we covet. These energetic states emerge when we do not affirm, accept and appreciate our own natural Beauty (both internally and externally). The greater the denial of our inner Beauty, the more we unconsciously Objectify ourselves and others. Objectifying a person in terms of physical attributes allows us to judge them for their effectiveness in being sexual partners.
Creating safety for others is only one side of the Protective Love process. We also need to create a sense of safety for ourselves that we will not be rejected, by making our partners need us as much as we need them. This means finding a safe reason why they would consider us as sexual partners. Usually, the more a partner outwardly admires any of our attributes, the more we feel we have a way to leverage them to be in relationship with us. Since our attachment to their physical form represents a sense of safety within us, we can be gracious and giving by reassuring them about their beauty. A problem emerges when, in the course of aging, physical attributes change, which affects their attachment and desire for us. We either need to find a new attachment or reason for them to stay with us, or try to create more safety by having them leave us. Ironically, many relationships operating on the Instinctive level create their sense of safety by constantly mistreating their partners. As long as they consciously experience not needing their partner, it creates the safety for them to exist.
Protective Love, in extreme forms, can also be an addiction (to love or sex, for example). Addiction occurs when we have disconnected our Sensations from our Feelings, which creates an inner void we do not know how to engage. It is ironic that only those who constantly experience this void realize its value in offering protection from others. The more we are caught up in addictive patterns, the more exciting the possibility is of protecting others to prove our value. This is because when we get caught in addictive patterns, we completely deny our value as a human being. Until we learn to acknowledge the downsides and see how entangled our relationships become with Protective Love, there will be no reason to escape this dilemma. The more we invest in Protective Love, the more fear we institutionalize in our relationships. We are afraid to make mistakes and therefore do not take appropriate action to grow and heal ourselves. Other obstacles include getting caught up in possessiveness and jealousy, which imprisons the ones we claim to love.
Protective Love Encourages Love as Sex
When we are caught up in Protective Love, it reflects we are trying to hold on to our physical nature; we fear we are losing our Life Energy. In effect, we are overly attached to our personality perspective and do not trust our creative nature. We attempt to build a false sense of safety by losing ourselves in sexual experiences. There are three types of sexual activities we use to distract ourselves from the imminence of death: Possessive Vampire Sex (where we covet the energy of others and use it to gain greater acceptance), Narcissistic Anonymous Sex (where we lose ourselves in fantasy, hoping we never have to deal with the reality) or Symbiotic Robotic Sex (where we get lost in repetitive mechanistic sexual activity to keep from questioning our larger experience). It is interesting to note that any form of sexuality forces us to accept our objective physical nature, but how we instinctively hold Love reflects what we fear most. In this way we distance ourselves from our own life experience by making sexual activity a goal that we endlessly pursue, but never attain.
Possessive Vampire Sex reflects a fear that others will be able to control and/or manipulate us, which means we have to preemptively control them first. Narcissistic Anonymous Sex reflects the fear that we will never creatively be seen for who we are, so we should make the best of a bad circumstance. Symbiotic Robotic Sex reflects the fear that there are many ways we can be distracted, and it is safest just to focus on the activity of sex itself. The underlying fears are why we call Possessive Vampire Sex the feminine, Symbiotic Robotic Sex the masculine, and Narcissistic Anonymous Sex the combination of the two. Possessive Vampire Sex is identified most easily by the motive of Greed, which reflects that it operates from the greatest internal sense of scarcity. Symbiotic Robotic Sex is commonly identified with the motive of Arrogance, reflecting a preoccupation with sexual techniques where they can demonstrate their superiority over others. Narcissistic Anonymous Sex is commonly identified with the motive of Lust, where we lose ourselves in the idea of connecting in such a way that actually prevents connection.
Each of these over-identifications with physical form is actually an attempt to get something (that seems denied to us) from our partner. Possessive Vampire Sex, for example, attempts to acquire the Life Force of others, because we do not seem able to hold or possess our own Life Energy. Symbiotic Robotic Sex attempts to keep others from distracting us into their issues by making our own needs predominant. Narcissistic Anonymous Sex tries to avoid the reality of our physicality by living in our imaginations so we cannot be hurt. The confusion of sex with Love is the result of not affirming and honoring our Life Energy. The more we can be present in our bodies and express our feelings in an active and flowing way, the less fixated we become on the act of sex. Instead of believing that Love equates to safety and sexuality, we start to see that Aliveness releases us from physical fixations that do not serve and support us.
Protective Love Is A Set Of Expectations
Protective Love requires that we become an actor, not letting our partners know when we are upset. It also demands that we pay attention to the fears of our partner, and make sure we do not inadvertently refer to or reinforce them. One of our primary jobs is to reassure our partner that their concerns are not obstacles for us to relate to them. Unfortunately, this takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to demonstrate our commitment to be protective of them. Since it is societyâ€™s assumption that those who are married should be protective of each other, we also need to be sensitive about how others may interpret our behaviors together. Underlying Protective Love is the ultimate fear of being rejected or ostracized by others because we did not do the right things.
Beauty is the antidote to Protective Love. Being able to see and acknowledge our own beauty helps us shake off the fear that we have to compromise ourselves to get what we want. Beauty is expansive and uplifting, both internally and externally. It is core to our sensory experience of the world, and how we honor that experience by speaking positively about it. The more we embrace our Beauty, the less we feel trapped by societyâ€™s or our parentsâ€™ expectations and beliefs. Many of us need to get in touch with the uniqueness, quality and degree of actualization we manifest in our Life expression through time. In each place, there is a way of expressing our Life energy that is naturally beautiful and congruent with who we are. When we affirm our Beauty, we naturally attract others who manifest this expansive state of presence in the same way we do. When fear is the rule, we connect to others through it (as in Protective Love) and deny our creative Life connection.
How much are you investing in protecting yourself? The degree you deny your sensory experience or limit your expression of your immediate well-being is the same degree that you inadvertently deny your Life energy. By denying your Life energy, you are denying your Beauty, which means you need the Beauty of your partner as a substitute (for your own sense of self). This is the Beauty Trap, where we seek constant affirmation (and attention) from others to offset self-disgust. Consider how looks matter in your choice of partners. Those that are trapped in Objectification will also be concerned about what other people think about them, because of the relative degree of attractiveness or non-attractiveness of their partners. The irony is that physical attributes do not have much to do with the natural inherent Beauty of the people you are with. The more healed you are around the Beauty Trap, the more strength of character you possess for being authentic.
Another element where we are disconnected from Beauty is our ability to appreciate it. Feelings about physical attributes have become more important in recent years as we grow older in an increasingly materialistic society. Many of us are in a state of reaction, which prevents us from actually taking action (such as losing weight) just because others think we should. The more we are disconnected from these Feelings, the harder it is to find our own natural rhythm, flow and physical expression in the world. The struggle we have is usually owning how we feel about ourselves without taking on the projections of others about how we should be. For this reason, there is a prevalence of Inertia and rigidity in how we present ourselves to others.
Learning how to take ownership for our body Sensations and Feelings is an opportunity to experience Beauty. Learning how to express Beauty requires that we tune in to our energy and identify what is congruent from that which is inauthentic. Our Beauty emerges from a natural sense of abundance that comes from affirming our wholeness. We are seeking to bring out our vibrancy and express the intricacy of our internal design throughout our lives. What helps to complete this transition is affirming how every exchange with others contributes in some way to making the world more beautiful. Learning how to pay attention to the part of us that resonates with each moment and giving it expression allows us to make ourselves works of art.
When we deny our Beauty, we operate from a sense of scarcity and loneliness, which becomes a desperation to connect to others, even if the connection is not appropriate. The more we are driven by Excitement, the more we are drawn to those who are the most difficult for us to love. The more we deny our Life energy, the more easily we are seduced by the appearance of physical attributes, which help us feel safe. We try to use the physical form to satisfy our inconsolable desire, to capture an experience in a way that can never be taken away from us. We eventually figure out we are just going through the motions, because each new experience seems to further diminish our inner Life energy, and we become more jaded. The tension arises from the fact that the more we get attached to the physical experience, the less we are able to be present with it. This means we can have numerous experiences but cannot accept or take the experiences inside.
Protective Love falsely promises that our partner can change this problem through their presence. We believe that the more we show and demonstrate our ability to protect our partner, the more they will (in turn) give of their Life energy to offset our deficiencies. This tension is further enhanced by the polarities of Aliveness (Sensation-seeking) and Wisdom (Feeling-expressive) to complement what we deny in ourselves. If we are seeking a safe relationship, those that do Protective Love are the worst people to go to because they have not become complete and whole in their expression of Beauty and Life energy. Anyone who uses outer Beauty while denying inner Beauty also falls into the pitfalls of Protective Love. In short, there is no escape but to finally acknowledge how our inner Beauty is constructed by merging our experience of Sensations with Feelings.
Overcoming Instinctive Conditioning
To become conscious about our choices in relationships requires becoming conscious about how our energy meets and matches the people around us. If we connect to others by seeking sensory stimulation, and they connect to us by acknowledging and summarizing our Sensations as Feelings, we are able to avoid dealing with our own internal and external sense of Beauty. While these Instinctive relationships are educational and even pleasurable, eventually our unhappiness and despair at not being able to connect in a fulfilling way overwhelms us. True connection comes when we are present simultaneously in our Feelings and Sensations. When we mutually connect, we can contribute to and uplift each other. Love becomes a Transmuting experience because we are operating from a sense of wholeness and completion. Unconditional, Radiant Self Unifying Love is empowered through the mutual experience of Aliveness to awaken new dimensions in how we interact with others.
This takes a step beyond the perspective that others need or want our protection. Acknowledging others as whole and capable of taking care of themselves allows us to connect through the experience of being in a state of joy, rather than trying to protect others from their own mistakes. The biggest downside of Protective Love is it diverts our energy into false ways of being with others that require tremendous energy to maintain. All the energy gets drawn into superficially taking care of each other through the roles we take on to protect our partners from our truth. Let us now recognize that the ultimate cost of pretending to be with someone is we never find fulfillment for ourselves. Imagine stepping into our Beauty and instead questioning who would meet us in a way that is energetically uplifting. Are we willing to wait for the right person to emerge who can meet us in this way? Are we willing to Transmute our current relationships so we mutually honor our Beauty? I pray we do so now.
Protective Love can be identified by affirming the following:
1. Do you feel that others should affirm what you do to protect them?
2. How much do you call your protective behaviors to the attention of others seeking a reaction?
3. How much do others tend to either distance you or cringe at your demonstrations of affection?
4. How much do you focus on whether others want you around or not?
5. How often do you attempt to enforce a fixed type of etiquette to make sure your reputation and the reputation of others does not suffer or get hurt?
If we need to prove or make known our interest in others through Protective Love, it indicates we are not confident they would accede to a direct approach. Let us learn to take risks by speaking about our feelings or interests directly. It helps others be direct in return.