Although we're often taught to believe we can only love one person at a time, it's time to really rethink that. While it might be easy if there were just one person for us, as in "The One," and once we find them we were set for life, things are really not that simple. Life, in general, is not that simple. And, honestly, I like to believe that as much as lack of simplicity can throw a wrench in things, no one really wants it that simple.
And considering the rise of non-monogamy today, more and more people are proving that there's not just one person out there for everyone. “When it comes to being in love, all bets are off,” dating Coach Francesca Hogi tells Bustle. “Everything is ‘normal.’ [Being in love with more than one person] is probably a lot more common than people realize.” Well isn't that a relief for each and every one of you out there who is currently in love with more than one person — or thinks you could be.
Aside from the fact that “all bets are off” when it comes to being in love, are there actual, rational reasons as to why this normal? Yes. Here are five of them.
1. We All Have Our Own Definition Of Being 'In Love'
One of the best parts about love is how we make it our own. How I define love and how you define love are probably very different. “The thing about love is it’s completely self-defined,” says Hogi. “One person can interpret their feelings as love, another as infatuation, another as lust.” Since that’s the case, it allows people to label it as they see fit. One person's lust, is another's concept of love.
2. We Can Love More Than One Person At A Time
“We all know that we can love many people at the same time,” says Hogi, “So who's to say being in love is any different?” If we’re capable of loving multiple people in different ways, as there are many different kinds of love, to say that we can only be IN love with one person at a time contradicts that first thinking. This is especially true if being “in love” is defined differently, from person to person.
3. Love Is Complicated
Love isn’t simply a matter of the proverbial heart, but an intricate medley of hormones and chemicals that come together to make us feel the feeling that we, as human beings, have decided to call love. Love changes over time, come and goes, strengthens and weakens, and can totally disappear only to come back again, later on, for another round.
In theory, love may seem simple, as in you love that person or you do not, but the reality is that love is as complex as things can get; it’s not black and white. Because of this, to think that to love only one person is the only “normal” way to love, is actually doing our ability to love a disservice.
4. Attraction Is Biological
We don’t really have much control over whom we become attracted to because biology is out of our hands. While one person can appeal to certain aspects of our desire, someone else can appeal to another entirely different set of aspects of our desire. Although these multiple desires can be categorized as lust or infatuation, as Hogi said, love is something we personally define. What this means is that feelings for more than one person can definitely be interpreted as love for more than one person. Which, again, is totally normal.
5. Love Doesn’t Necessarily Die
If you’ve been in love with someone, that love doesn’t always die. Although my first love and I broke up well over a decade ago, I still love him very deeply. I loved him very deeply during the relationships that followed and even through my marriage; and I’m not alone in carrying this love for a former partner.
“Many people freely admit they'll always love an ex, even though they consider themselves to be in love with their current partner,” says Hogi. “The bottom line is, having feelings for more than one person at a time is completely normal. The question then becomes how to proceed, and with whom!”
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