The opposite of love is not hate, but fear

The opposite of love is not hate, but fear

The opposite of love is not hate, but fear

Last update: 20 November 2015

“Love without measure, without limits, without complications, without permission, without courage, without advice, without doubts, without price, without care, without anything. Do not be afraid to love, you will shed tears with or without love ”.

(Chavela Vargas)

What would you do without fear?

One of the innate feelings of man is fear. It is about a natural reaction to danger.

Fear it helps us to survive, but it also imposes limits on us and it has often been used to bend the wills of others. It has repercussions on both the body and the mind.

In the face of fear, our body reacts by increasing blood pressure, dilating the pupils and increasing the rate of heartbeat.

However, sometimes fear it's only in our head, why it can be imaginary, when it does not correspond to a real danger.

There are many types of fear: fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of loss of power and fear of change.


When we're afraid, we don't make decisions,

we are not creative and, above all,

we are not happy.

Carl Gustav Jung, a great Swiss psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, argues that we all hide some aspects of us, because from an early age we realize that it is necessary to be accepted.

This set of characteristics that we do not accept in ourselves, are like a 'shadow that emerges during our life.

Together with "the shadow", we develop what Freud called "The ideal of the ego" or "the ideal ego", an ego that we create to be able to become part of the environment that surrounds us without being rejected.

The non-acceptance of the shadow implies many problems, since we do not accept ourselves out of fear, we don't love each other. Fear is the opposite of love. We do not love ourselves out of fear of ourselves and we are unable to love others.

What would we do without the fear of accepting ourselves, recognizing ourselves and being rejected?

We would be free and we could enjoy love for ourselves and for others.


"Anything that irritates us in others can lead us to understand ourselves"

(Carl Gustaf Jung)

What is the opposite of love?

L'odio o "hate" in Latin, indica un feeling of repulsion towards someone or something. In reality it is something useless. What is the use of hating? Nothing. It just makes us feel bad.

Paulo Freire, Brazilian expert in education, argues that:


"The opposite of love is not, as is often or almost always thought, hatred, but the fear of loving, and the fear of loving is the fear of being free".

Love softens us, fear hardens us. Love opens up the universe, fear makes us close in on ourselves.

Why are we afraid to love?

“Fear is the most difficult emotion to manage. Pain is crying, anger is screaming, but fear silently clings to the heart "

(David Fischman)

Love is always a risk. We must always take this risk and live life, live the passion of loving. Our past experiences and our beliefs limit us and trigger the fear of love.

Our fear of love comes from our lack of love for ourselves or lack of self-esteem. If we can't love ourselves, how can we love someone else?

Our self-esteem or the consideration we have of ourselves, it is an aspect that we must improve in order to be able to love ourselves and to love others.

Argentine psychologist Walter Riso proposes some key tips to improve our self-esteem:

- Promote self-praise. Whenever we do something well, something positive, we have to praise ourselves. How good I was!

- Reward if. Any milestone achieved in our life, however small it may be, deserves a reward. The reward can be something simple that we like and make us smile.

- Eliminate repressive beliefs that prevent us from "self-reinforcing". While sometimes we have to put limits on our feelings, other times we have to get them out. What's wrong with crying in public or showing our affection for someone in front of others?

- Don't be ashamed of your successes and efforts, you have to enjoy them.

The extreme case of the fear of love is philophobia. A person suffering from philophobia feels a very intense fear of falling in love with someone else, of compromise and of establishing an intimate relationship.

Philophobic people take advantage of several mechanisms to defend against love and stay in your safe environment:

- They fall in love with impossible people.

- They undertake relationships that are doomed to fail, because both partners are too different.

- They provoke discussions with each other, to shift the responsibility of ending the relationship onto him / her.

- They tend to look for the other's faults. In this way, they can justify themselves.

How to overcome the fear of love

Fear of loving is a normal feeling if we have had negative experiences, but we must not give it space and allow it to lead our life. The fear of loving you have to face it face to face, without running away.

If we are afraid of a relationship with another person, we need to let them know to make them participate.

Communication is essential to overcome our fear. Also, you have to leave past relationships behind and live the new relationship day in and day out.


"Not loving for fear of suffering is like not living for fear of dying"

(Ernesto Mallo)

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