Corot  1838




I don’t usually like folks’ grumpy rants, but here goes one of mine. Although I think of it more like expounding, than fussing. Still, it’s a new format for me.

I move to abolish the word “Love” and also the word “God.”  When folks use “love” in a communication they don’t know what they’re saying, nor do people who use the word “God.”

I think it’s already been validated that most folks don’t really know what they mean when they use the big G word; but how about “love?”

I’ll bet if we really knew it, “love” is more often used as a con than otherwise. And remember, when love deceives, the urge is often to try and hurt back. I think we’ve learned that parents who love their children too much are projecting themselves onto the child in a manner that inhibits the child’s own development. (See Normal Neurosis for more about this).

I guess almost all of us sign off from a phone converstion with family with “I love you,” although the content of the conversation may have been fraught with hostility.

So if we toss out the word “love” what do we use instead? Whatever’s really meant.  Desire; enjoy; like; am comfortable with; am dedicated to; am loyal to; am attracted to; feel close to sexually or emotionally; respect; value; etc. I’ve run out of words (temporarily). I suspect that when we use that word we are fooling ourselves as much as the “be-loved.”

It was with surprise that I learned during therapy that if an excessive amount of energy is put into a word or statement, it turns out the opposite is also true, that the extra energy reflects an underlying conflict. Kinda complicated, so you can ignore this.

Now, “I believe in God” has no content value at all, except that the speaker does not consider themselves an atheist or agnostic.  In general, it probably means that “I have a need to make sense out of life and to believe that it has meaning.” Or, “I am fulfilling a need to feel especially ‘loved’ and taken care of.”  (I understand the Hottentot’s God was a preying mantis, a fun statement that’s not really relevant here.)

Excuse me for using this space for a rant that’s not crucial.  I just felt an urge to “run off at the fingers.”

About Nan Mykel

At 79, I was just about to stop keeping a journal, but that felt like accepting that growth was finished. I don't want to be finished, yet! I'm 80 now, and struggling to communicate with you, if you'll come and set awhile. P.S. My how time flies! I'm 83 now.
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4 Responses to A RANT ABOUT LOVE

  1. Sallie Carpentier says:

    Wow….ok. If that will make you happy….


  2. Carpentier, Sallie says:

    Hi Mom,
    Still not sure if you can see my comments when I comment on your blog site, (they don’t show up on my end) so I’m going to try to reply to this blog notificiation.

    Sorry if I upset you when I signed my last email with Love.

    I guess I can give that up. I really only want to make you happy.
    So, I can say, I’m devoted to you. I think you’re amazing. I feel a connection to you like I have with no one else.
    You’re my hero/heroine.
    I love like it when you seem to be happy and when you laugh in a caring and happy way.
    I wish I could see you more often. I’m also dedicated to you.

    I’ll let you know if I think of anything else!

    Fondly, Sallie
    Hmm, that doesn’t sound right….like not enough. I remember once you were visiting with Martin Buss when one of his son’s had recently visited with his fiancé (or wife).
    You said that Martin had said “Well they seem fond of each other”. You reported that you said something like, “well for Pete’s sake, I would hope they feel more than FONDNESS for each other, if they are getting married!” 😀


    • nmykel says:

      Not sure if you are joking or not. You must be. I wasn’t talking about everyday reality but something that’s rampant in our culture, widespread in principle. I can’t say I’ll never say either word again, but…maybe I should just delete. Do you agree that folks use “love” too readily to describe a broad array of other feelings? I love you my daughter but do I also love tennis and my cat? At what point does the word cover too many situations? Same for God. Do I mean an underlying connectiveness in the universe or someone sitting on a throne deciding whether to send me to hell or not? Maybe I just wanted to spout off. Sometimes bloggers seem to do that.I’ll leave the post up for a little and see if anyone else reads it.

      Love, Mom


  3. Oliana says:

    You bring up a valid point…we tend to overuse this word. In French I find it even more difficult and confusing. Like does not exist…it is all love. I cannot say enough how I love my adult children and my grandson. I do love my cat A LOT, she is my bff (best feline friend) I love to eat (which is a bit of a problem). But it is not just the word…it is the way we say it…the intonation…and we feel it in our gut if it is genuine…great post…something to ponder and glad you got it off your chest too


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