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  • Paula Thompson
    Paula Thompson

    Uncertainty of Love: Debunking the Signs of Caring

    As time passes, it is easy to become more and more uncertain of the emotions shared in an intimate relationship. The mind begins to fill with questions such as: Do they really care for me? What if I’m reading their gestures wrong? Are my expectations too high or too low?

    Similar anxieties around relationships are felt by many as there seems to be no definitive answer on how to tell if someone loves, or even cares for us, in a meaningful way. This article looks further into why this can be so difficult to establish and delves into some key psychological components that may influence how we act, think, and interact with others we care about.

    The Relationship between Attachment and Care

    Studies throughout the years have focused on the connection between attachment-related styles and care from romantic partners. One particular 2011 study attempted to map out this dynamic, examining how individuals exhibit various levels of commitment when in relationships and whether the level of commitment can be linked to the levels of care they experience. It turns out that differences in commitment styles do indeed impact how much care partners show towards one another, based on the respective perspectives on the idea of having a lasting relationship.

    Accord to the inquiry, individuals who perceive relationships as a form of "security" feel more cared for within them than those who don’t attribute attachment to their partner. However, much of this relies on the other person's reactions and actions, which can be difficult to measure if they happen to be elusive with their emotions.

    The Importance of Body Language

    When it comes to matters of the heart, body language is often our best tool for understanding how someone feels about a certain subject. Take for instance the famous eyes-nose-mouth (ENM) theory, which emphasizes that people tend to lose eye contact as a sign of being uncomfortable and insecure. Meanwhile, pursing their lips together indicates a level of tension, or disapproval, of the conversation’s topic. These small approaches can make all the difference when deciphering what someone is feeling; at least to an extent.

    It is important to remember though that body language is almost never conclusive when it comes to the complexities of relationship dynamics - it takes multiple forms of communication to truly understand someone’s feelings in an intricate situation. Just because they stay quiet with their mouth apart, doesn't mean they aren’t bothered by something.

    The Power of Intuition

    Finally, when all else fails, we should trust our gut. Intuition plays a major role in understanding how someone cares for us, as it is the culmination of everything we receive inputs of, even subconsciously. If our brain continuously finds evidence that someone cares, then more often than not, that is a direct reflection of the truth.

    That isn't to say our intuition will hit the nail on the head all the time. There will be moments were we are wrong and neglect to realize it for what it is. But this is also natural, as we become attached to certain feelings and thoughts as a means of escaping reality. It is in these select moments that we must be gentle with ourselves, pause and look around to assess the situation instead of assuming the worst.

    Only one thing is for sure: Love and care is a tricky venture, no matter how strong the bond may be between two people. Convincing ourselves of our own worth and emotionality can be hard, which is why we must take our time to inspect subtle signs and ensure we are taking steps to uncover the truth of our relationship. This is the only way to maintain healthy balance with our loved ones and continue showing them the respect they deserve.

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