I know it’s not a popular opinion, but I think the notion of romanticized, quixotic, and or unconditional love can be almost dangerous and misleading. We see it in movies/television/in books, stories and idealize and hope we can find it for ourselves. But for some, that is all they are, stories. I personally don’t know love — I have loved, sure. But I have a lot of regret over what I gave up and for the people I thought loved me in return. For example, assuming parental love is unconditional. Wow. It is not. Society likes to paint out all parents as generous and loving when they are not, and people with great parents can’t imagine what it is like to have abusive ones. These are the same people who shame us by saying things like, “But she’s your mom, you are supposed to forgive her” when we say we have nothing to do with or avoid spending time with our abusive parents. As though this fact is supposed to negate the cruel things they did to us. Take it from me, we’re not all raised the same. Some parents suck. Some are monsters. I endured years of abuse from my family (parents and siblings), even though what I actually had was not love because I was under the mistaken impression if I was just more hard-working or gave more, they’d treat me better. Nope. It is what society teaches us, parents and children love one another unconditionally. Perhaps it is true for some people. But for some of us, you sure can stop loving them because of some conditions: neglect, gaslighting, financial, physical and emotional abuse, etc. At this point, I just think love, in general, is bullsh*t. It has brought me nothing but grief.