Love Bombing - The Basics
Love at first sight, a common dream shared by many people. You know, the thought of locking eyes with someone from across the room and them being the perfect partner for you. This idea is having been the plot of countless Hollywood movies and novels. Generally, in relationships that are considered “love at first sight”, the relationship progresses very quickly and intensely. As many people believe that they are living in a real-life movie, they often do not question a relationship which progresses at an unhealthy rate. However, often different partners in a relationship may have different ideas of how fast they wish the relationship to progress. In many movies, one person does not wish to be in a relationship or wish to take a relationship at a slower pace. At which point, the other person lavishes the other with gifts, time, and affection. Generally, the partner who wished to take their relationship slow caves and falls madly in love with their partner. Though this scenario makes for a great story for novels and movies, it can be a big red flag of a potentially abusive relationship known as “love bombing”.
At times, most people will not recognize love bombing while it is happening. People often think a person just has intense feelings about them or that they are really in love. Though not every relationship follows the same timeline of progression, there are common ideas of love bombing. Some common indicators can include:
- Being called a “soulmate” or saying “I love you” within a matter of weeks of dating. This can create feelings of anxiousness or confuse the true emotions one may be feeling.
- Receiving expensive gifts at the beginning of the relationship (i.e., jewelry, financial assistance, expensive trips). Often, abusers use these gifts as a form of control or to justify their behavior.
- Intense often over the top compliments are a common piece of love bombing. Phrases such as “You are perfect; my life would be nothing without you” in a relationship (especially early on) can be a used by abusers to manipulate one into being with them.
- The feeling of constant communication is overwhelming can be a sign of love bombing. During the early phases of a relationship, constant and consistent communication is not completely a red flag. However, feeling overwhelmed by a person’s communication style at the beginning of a relationship can often be a red flag of possible future abuse.
While love bombing may feel like the start of a whirlwind romance, it can often be a red flag of future abuse. At the start of a relationship, it is important to have both partners discuss what they feel comfortable with and respect each other’s boundaries. Love is Respect are a great resource to provide additional advice on love bombing. You can reach an advocate by texting “LOVEIS” to 22522, chatting via the site, or calling 1.866.331.9474.