General Question

lloydbird's avatar

Is 'Being in Love' sometimes a mental illness?

Asked by lloydbird (8704 points ) October 22nd, 2012

The reason I ask is because today I heard, on the radio, an interview with a young woman (32yrs+2kids) who has been a victim of domestic abuse. She has just published a book about her ordeal.
Her abuser had beat her severly and gouged her eyes out leaving her totally blind. Horrific.
The thing is, when asked by the interviewer, If she loved him?, she replied that she still did for some months after the incident. This, I must admit, shocked and rocked me.
So, what is going on with such women?
Can you shed any light on this kind of thing?

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8 Answers

Coloma's avatar

A lot of severe abuse victims have their own, equally serious issues. Low self esteem, brainwashing, gaslighting and other psychological issues both on their own and due to the abuse they live with. Many are delusional and hold out false hope because the abusive episodes are not frequent and the honeymoon phase keeps lulling then back into a false sense of security. The cycle continues, wash, rinse, repeat.

There is a documentary called ” Crazy Love” about a woman who’s boyfriend threw acid in her face and blinded her and she went on to MARRY him! Unbelievable! I could shed some more insight, but, don’t have the time right now.

marinelife's avatar

It is not really love. It is enmeshment with her abuser. Her own self-image is damaged, and she believe she deserves to be abused.

Shippy's avatar

It is more like an unhealthy bond. Because let’s face it, you cannot ask a woman who lived with a guy like that, if she loved him. What is her experience of love?

wundayatta's avatar

Although, they say the chemistry of your brain when you are in love is something like the chemistry of some mentally ill people. They. I don’t remember where I heard that, though. Sorry. But I believe it to be true.

But I don’t think it is mental illness. You make think differently when in love, but I think that is necessary in order to bond with someone. Maybe you have to be crazy to bond with someone, but I think that bonding with someone is not an illness. Not even temporarily.

Bill1939's avatar

Desires, needs and/or wants, are established early in one’s life. The first thousand days of life establishes both one’s conception of self and others. This framework is the character of the individual. Experience modifies expectations, sometimes distorting their qualities; emotion is not a rational mental process. Creating such internal structures is necessary to insure survival in whatever reality one is born into.

It has only been in relatively recent times that most people have the freedom and power to change their reality, if only to escape to a different environment. Sadly, an individual’s existing psychological makeup too often results in their recreating their heinous life with a different cast of characters playing the same abusive roles.

wds2's avatar

Love could cause obsession, which leads to insanity. So…it could lead to it, I suppose.

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