New relationships and honeymoon phases are just amazing. You get to go on a few dates, are all up each other with sweet text messages, give each other gifts, and constant attention, and even at one point bombard them with millions of text messages.
I bet you’ve also done these things during the first few days when we’re meeting someone new. But how do we know that the excitement and honeymoon phase ends and the potentially dangerous love bombing begins?
But what exactly is love bombing?
Is it literally bombing the one you love?
Nope. Well, maybe kind of?
One thing for sure is that love bombing is a huge red flag 🚩
Love bombing as was defined in Cosmopolitan by a licensed therapist is “characterized by excessive attention, admiration, and affection with the goal to make the recipient feel dependent and obligated to that person,”
It can feel like a good thing in the beginning because it makes you feel like you’re at the top of the world because all this attention and love is directed at you and no one else.
But some articles mentioned that this is possibly the core of narcissistic behavior, which is deeply defined as a learned pattern of behavior when their self-worth is low that they overcompensate for the relationship to receive the same amount of love and affection in order to maintain their self-worth.
Now, although that is a technical description and I am in no position to diagnose such individuals (if you want to know more, seek answers from your psychologists), love bombing happens to us when may be at one point we’ve completely relied on and depended on our partner emotionally, physically, and maybe even financially.
The weirdest thing about this though is that some people unconsciously love-bomb their partners, and maybe we’ve done it too.
But now that we know that love bombing is a red flag, what signs do you have to know if you’re being love bombed? How is it different from falling in love?
#1: Compliments are coming in like waterfalls
I mean it’s amazing to get compliments, and praise from our partners but when he starts praising you and telling you their undying love after a short amount of time can be kind of – weird.
I mean, imagine this, you’ve only been talking or dating for a week, and he starts telling you about a future together, how you’re all over perfect without even getting to know other parts of you.
I’ve had that experience, it was actually really weird to have been told that he could see a future with me and that he loves me on the FIRST day we were talking. I asked him what made him come to that conclusion, and all he said was that he had immediately liked me when I sent the first message on that dating app and that I was amazed at the job he has.
Now, I understand that this experience may not come to everyone, but at one point we’ve always told someone or have been receiving enormous amounts of compliments like “the only person I wanna spend time with” or even “you’re just amazing, I’ve never met anyone as perfect as you.” during the first few weeks of the talking stage, dating stage, or even the honeymoon phase. As I’ve mentioned before, love bombing can be unconscious, and we might not even know we’re doing it at that time, but it is best to be aware.
We can’t just keep accepting compliments and end up with false hope and promises in the long run.
#2: 💣calls 💣text messages
The art of spamming.
Now, I’m not saying spamming is wrong. It can be quite helpful to spam during emergencies or when you’re talking to someone with hot gossip BUT when you’re bombarded with texts, calls, and even to the point when they message you in every social media account you’re connected with it's kind of draining.
Being in constant communication with them is normal especially when you’ve just started dating, but it indefinitely becomes a red flag when the communication is one-sided and may start to feel overwhelming.
I don’t quite remember that cartoon or tv series where the person was receiving a mass of messages that started with affection leading to anger for not being able to reply and either apologizing or ending things through chats.
Although this is quite triggering to share, I had an ex-boyfriend who wanted me to message him every minute of my day if possible because if I wouldn’t, he would spam text me to the point he would call and text my friends as well to know about my whereabouts.
#3: GIVE ME ATTENTION 😡
The first thing that came into my mind was that episode of the boss baby where the parents had all the attention on the baby, and eventually Tim got angry. It’s kind of like that.
When your focus and attention aren’t on them or anyone else or even something else, they might get angry.
I know this might be a little triggering to some people, but have you ever had that relationship where your partner would get angry at you for wanting to have a girl's night out? And maybe would lock you out? Or threaten you at one point of maybe breaking up or throwing your things out?
Yeaaaah. No. I hate when that happens.
I’ve had friends who went through relationships like that, and it sucked seeing my friend bawling her eyes out trying to apologize to us for missing so many hang outs or cancelling at the last minute.
We have our own lives outside our relationships, and it can be suffocating when you’re being limited to only spending all your time and attention with one person or else they start throwing tantrums.
Endless grand or over-the-top gestures, kind of like when Ross sent Rachel (in friends) multiple gift baskets, stuffed toys, a singing group, or even accusing her of him being paranoid. Some would even buy expensive gifts or plane tickets (some not all) and not take “no” for an answer.
I mean, there’s nothing wrong with sending gifts especially when your love language is gift-giving BUT when they’re constantly giving you gifts the point is they might be trying to manipulate you into thinking that you owe them.
It can be quite difficult for people who have difficulty accepting and receiving gifts to actually accept them because sometimes love languages don’t match, and you end up only giving them your time and attention.
Honestly, when I started writing this, I thought I was love-bombing my boyfriend. Why? Because I give him gifts. Not always tho, but I do. I give him gifts just cause I remember him when I see something or during celebrations.
This made me realize that when you do start reading this it’s okay to get paranoid if you’re love bombing in your relationship because you’re evaluating yourself and might actually try to take the love languages test.
#5: 🏃🏼♀️💨 Relationship
The Flash ⚡
You know the kind of relationship that just ends or even starts in a snap.
The kind where they or you start convincing them that you’re soulmates or even talk about how you dreamed that you saw them marrying you in a dream or even maybe along those lines that kind of is like right out of a film.
The thing is, true love and relationships don’t look like the ones we see in movies. The kind where minutes from now you rush into having them or wanting you to be committed to them. It takes a lot of time and effort to actually be with someone genuinely.
What’s scary is that some studies I believe showed that love bombing happens more than often to those who are in abusive relationships. Now I’m not saying it is a direct relation as some people have continued to study (and honestly, it is not in my position to diagnose because I’m not a professional), but because we don’t really have classes or seminars on how love should work and when we’re blinded by the love our partner gives us it can be quite hard to distinguish what we should get in a relationship.
But even with this short list of signs of love bombing cannot be enough for us to believe that we’re being love bombed or doing the love bombing, it is best to talk to someone about your experience.