If you love someone, let them go. Isn’t love supposed to be an affair based on commitment through thick and thin?
On the other hand, should you force yourself against someone?
These are the two questions that often come to mind whenever that phrase, “If you love someone, let them go”, is mentioned. Here, we are going to explore it in full to unravel the true meaning and context of what it means to let go of someone that you love.
First, how do you know you love someone?
Love is a beautiful thing, it’s an experience everyone must have before they leave this world. But love is full of its own intricacies and mystery. It is one of the most powerful forces in the world but there are so many questions about it – does love exist? is there anything as true love? how do I know that someone loves me? how do I know that I am in love with someone?
One of the first feelings you will have when you love someone is that you take interest in them as if they are yourself. You don’t want any harm to come to them. That’s a sign that you have kept that person in your heart, and anything that happens to them would feel like it happened to you as well.
You want to do everything for them. You can’t let them leave your sight. They are just so dear to you that you don’t even want them to stop loving you too.
Now, the big question is, how do you let go of someone so dear to your heart? Let’s fully explore the phrase now.
“If you love someone, let them go” – meaning
There are times when you feel like you are hopelessly in love with someone, and you don’t want to lose them to another person. It’s hard to imagine them leaving you because you don’t know exactly how to deal with it when that happens.
Sometimes, you may subconsciously undermine the person’s own will in the relationship – more like they don’t have a say in it. This makes the love a selfish kind of love because you do not allow the person to make their own decisions whether or not they want to be with you.
Sometimes, you may not do it forcefully but your actions make the person see how attached you are. They see how hurt you would feel if they leave and they fear what would happen if they do. This might make them hang around even if they are no longer interested in the relationship because they fear you won’t take ‘no’ for an answer. But not for so long.
On the other hand, when you love someone, and the person loves you too, you don’t need to trap them to keep them. Nothing whatsoever is required other than your commitment to be with them and continue to love them. Letting go of the one you love, in this context, means you should allow them their freedom to decide. It takes two to tango, and if they love you, they will always find their way back into your life.
Letting someone you love go does not mean giving up on them
You might be in any of these scenarios, and I acknowledge it might be difficult to let go of the one you love. However, you will see that letting go of someone you love does not equate to giving up on them. It is only an expression that connotes your willingness to let them have their own freedom to choose.
Take, for instance, you are in love with someone. You have taken steps to get in close touch with them and things have been going pretty well lately. However, you begin to feel that you are putting more effort into the relationship than the other person, or it feels like they are interested only because you make them feel so.
It neither means you should not do your best nor should you give up on them. What it means is that, after you have done your best, you should rest a while to see if the other person picks up from there.
Don’t let someone you love go for no reason
Before you let someone you love go (in the sense that we just discussed), it is important that you established a valid reason to let them go. Love is not an examination that tests who passes or fails. You should not make your relationship a test as well.
If you love someone, you let them go, but if you just take the phrase only at face value without understanding its true meaning, you might be tempted to start giving attitudes that will push your partner away until it is too late to get them back. This is necessary and is in fact, a very stupid thing to do.
You are not meant to create tests for your partner, that’s more like setting a trap to see if they would fall. The relationship has enough tests already if you stay long enough together. What I mean is that you will naturally find scenarios that will test your partner for you without you making efforts to invent them.
If you stay committed to your partner, you will learn to understand them. It is also during this time that you will find out about your incompatibilities and values differences to see if you can ignore them or if they are a deal-breaker.
Don’t just let the love of your life go just because you want to test them, even when they did not do anything to warrant it. You might end up losing the lover you wish you always had.
However, lastly, there are specific instances when you should let them go in order to see if they are committed to you in the relationship. Some of those instances are given below.
Scenarios you should “let go” of someone you love
1. When the love feels one-sided
One-sided love can be very exhaustive. It is not something you want to do all through your life. When it feels like the love is one-sided, it is time to allow the person to decide what they want from the relationship. You simply want to see what happens when you pause your on side of the relationship. If that partner loves you, it will awaken them to give their own side to the relationship, and then you continue together.
2. When the person makes you believe that you do not love them genuinely
There are times when it feels like you are interested in this person just because of some material things. Maybe he or she is some sort of celebrity or public hero. If they approached you earlier and you have gone on well together, it is a good sign that they love you. But sometimes, you might appear to be doing all the work like in the previous point above.
However, such individuals sometimes have flash thoughts about if you genuinely love them or if you are interested only because of their fame or money. At such points, you might want to press the brake pedal a little, to see if they would make effort as well.
Also, if it appears that they are the ones letting go of you because they feel like you are not putting effort, you should step up your own game. It is a tête-à-tête affair.
3. A new relationship when their interest is still divided
If you are in a new relationship with your partner, you often are not so confident about the strength of the relationship. Before they get committed to you, both of you might still be open to other people. And even if you think that he/she loves you, they can still sustain their interest in other people until your relationship takes off fully.
If you love them, you must show them that you do, especially if they too make you see their interests in you. However, after this is done and you find that they are hooking up with another person, this is not the time to stage a fight or quarrel with anyone. Rather, it is the time to respect their decisions and wait if they truly love you. If they love you, they will come back to you in no time. Otherwise, accept that they were not meant for you.
4. When their commitment is sub-optimal
This is the same with that of one-sidedness. If it feels as though you are the only one trying to make things work between both of you, take a short break to observe if their heart truly lies with you.
People often value something more when they are about to lose or have lost it. Making them see for themselves that if they don’t do anything they might lose you can spur someone who loves you to rethink and work towards putting as much work into the relationship as you once did.
Letting someone you love go is a sign of maturity
Easier said than done, you’d say. And you are definitely right to think that. Allowing someone you love the freedom to decide is not the difficult thing here. Coming to face the possibility that they might not come back is what the problem is, but in the end, it is totally worth it.
Being able to muster the courage to loosen your grip on a person you love just so that they can freely decide what they want is a sign of maturity. Only strong people can afford to do that and I bet you are one. However, be rest assured that if they love you, I mean truly love you, they will find their way back into your arms.
What if they leave you from there?
This might be your fear of not allowing your SO to have the freedom to decide. A few people might even use subtle threats and warnings to keep their partner with themselves, but that is slavery. It is not love. In any case, I must tell you the truth that you probably already know and thereafter, show you a way out.
If the person you love leaves you after you let them go, it can be painful, like heartbreak. But I would commend you for being strong enough to let them have the freedom to decide for themselves. Trust me, it wasn’t meant to last. They would have left anyways, maybe now, maybe later. Someone who truly loves you will come your way, I pray you to love them too. And just like you’d deal with a breakup, brace up.
When to actually let someone you love go
We have seen here that, “If you love someone, let them go” does not directly mean “letting them go” but rather implies letting them have the freedom to choose you or not. However, there are instances when you should actually let them go
- When they prove that they love someone else.
- When they do not return after giving them the freedom to choose.
- When they keep walking away from your life and coming back blowing hot and cold.
- When they are not interested in trying to make the romance work.
These and similar situations mean that they are not interested in you, at least, not currently.
Don’t be a coward!
A coward is someone who flees at the sight of the slightest challenge. Sometimes, someone who loves you may act in a way that may portray that they are letting you go, so that you can choose for yourself. Cowards see this as a reason to retreat even when they love the other person.
If you truly love someone and you are sure about it, you should prove it by going back to them. The principle does not only apply to you when you are the one letting your love go. It also applies to you when you are the one being let go. Two things to establish here; if you know that the person truly loves you or loved you, and you also love them, don’t be a coward who stops fighting because the other person stopped too.
I sincerely hope that you have learnt some important contexts about letting go of someone you love. It’s not always such an easy thing to do but it’s always worth it. It demonstrates your level of maturity and also guarantees you of finding true love subsequently.
Love is patient, kind and not enslaving. So much so that we can confidently reaffirm that, “If you love someone, let them go. If they love you, they will come right back to you”.
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