Love or Lust How to Tell the Difference Between Them

The dating world nowadays can feel like finding love is a needle in a haystack. We can feel rejected when a date doesn’t ask us out again, or we may open our hearts to the wrong people. It’s easy to feel lost, not knowing exactly where to look for love and end up in a few wrong places.

Oftentimes, we want love so badly we confuse love for infatuation or lust, and when the dust settles, we wish we’d seen it sooner.  There are key differences between lust and love, and it’s important we know them.

It’s time to ask yourself: is it love or lust?

What Do You Like About Your Partner?

Have you ever sat down and asked yourself the simple question of what attracts you to your partner, outside of what they are doing for you? This is a simple way to learn if you are in love.

Write out all of the things you like or love about your partner.  Are they mostly physical attributes, related again to what they are doing for you or how they make you look? If so, you might be in lust, not love.

If you write out a bunch of personality traits in addition to physical or sexual attributes, then chances are better that you’re in love. This shows that you have deeper feelings towards your partner than surface-level attraction.

Remove Sex from the Relationship…What Happens?

People are jumping into bed right away nowadays and hormones are getting in the way of seeing if there is more to the relationship than just the hookup.  The sex is amazing, fun, you get lost in it- but what else is there? You can’t keep your hands off each other, and the only time you’re not having sex is when you’re lying in bed after having sex.

Now, this could also be the case with people in love. Oftentimes people who are falling in love can’t keep their hands off each other either, no harm there.  The difference is, people in love will still have an amazing relationship when they have fun together, laugh, have emotional connection and much more.

So, if sex were taken away from you and your partner, would you still spend as much time together? Would you be just as happy doing other things as you would be having sex?  If yes, then you might be in love, but if the thought of not having sex completely derails your feelings about your partner, it’s definitely lust.

How Much Do You Share?

One of the best things about being in love is feeling safe in sharing your deepest thoughts, fears, and experiences. These are the types of things you don’t share with anyone because it exposes you and leaves you vulnerable.

If you find yourself sharing more than you’ve ever shared with your partner, that’s a strong sign that you’re in love.

If you find it difficult to open up to your partner and become vulnerable, it might be because you don’t trust them or feel comfortable enough around them. This could be a sign of infatuation or lust, however if this is a pattern in your life, it could also mean you are at times over-protective of your heart. 

What Would You Do for Your Partner?

If you’re in love with someone, there are no limits to what you would do for them. You think of their wellbeing and want to be there for them. You want them to be happy more than anything. Ask yourself how much you’d be willing to sacrifice or compromise for your partner. If you can’t think of any limits to what you would do, you’re in a loving relationship.

If the thought of putting your partner before you makes you unhappy, or if you feel hesitant to help them, then it might just be lust.

How Do You Feel Around Your Partner?

When you’re in a loving relationship, you feel like your best self. Your partner motivates you to be the best version of you, and you believe you can be anything you want. That is a clear indication that you’re in a healthy and loving relationship. 

If the only thing you’re gaining from the relationship is sexual experiences, it’s not love. 

Do You Talk About a Future Together?

Lustful relationships are short-lived, and one or both partners aren’t thinking about a future together. If you’re in love, it’s hard not to think about a future together. When you’re in love, you feel like it’s something that’ll last forever, which means you start thinking and talking about a future together.

Do you talk about getting married? Do you want to live together? Do you find yourself becoming more flexible in your future plans to fit your partner’s plans? 

It can be scary to talk about the future, so just because you haven’t talked to your partner about these things, it doesn’t mean it’s not love. It might mean you’re taking things slowly and living in the moment, which is a great thing to do.

Do You Want to Meet Their Friends and Family?

Meeting a partner’s friends and family is a scary thing.  Not something you do casually. If the idea of meeting your partner’s family makes your stomach turn and run in the opposite direction, it’s probably not love.

If you want to meet your partner’s parents and friends, and learn more about the people he loves, that’s a healthy sign that your relationship is the real deal.

Is It Love or Lust?

At the beginning of a relationship, it can be hard to tell if you are feeling love or lust towards your partner. By asking yourself these questions, the answer will make itself clear to you.

Are you looking for love but continue to find lust? Do you need help finding your dream partner? Contact our team today for a free consultation!


  • Giordana Toccaceli

    International Dating, Relationship and Intimacy Expert

    Giordana Toccaceli is an International Dating, Relationship and Intimacy Expert having worked with thousands of women and men around the world to become their most attractive and magnetic selves and attract incredible partners into their lives in record time. Giordana has worked with a wide range of clients from Top CEOs, successful entrepreneurs, professional athletes, actors, models and every day men and women. She is a regular contributor to Univision TV's morning show "Despierta Austin" and the Founder of Woman's Allure and the Co-Founder of Embody Love Project.