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Why Is Love Painful Sometimes?

Vivian Bricker

Contributing Writer
Published Jul 31, 2023
Why Is Love Painful Sometimes?

Love is beautiful, yet it is something that can be painful. A loved one dies, a friendship ends, or we are rejected by our significant other. It hurts so much because we genuinely love and care about them.

Brought to you by Christianity.com

Love is a painful thing sometimes. While it is something beautiful, it can also be extremely painful. When we love someone, we have a special bond with them — a bond that isn’t easily broken. We love many people in our lives, such as siblings, parents, friends, and significant others, but nobody ever tells us how painful love can be.

Loved ones will hurt us, and we will hurt them. It is inevitable and something that will continue to happen until we are with Christ.

The Pain of Love

“Don't believe anyone Who tells you any different If it's easy, if it's fun Something's missing” (“Love is Pain,” FINNEAS).

Love is beautiful, yet it is something that can be really painful. It is because we love someone and care about them so much that it hurts. A loved one dies, a friendship ends, or we are rejected by our significant other. All of these things can hurt and break us inside.

It hurts so much because we genuinely love and care about them. Real love isn’t letting someone do whatever they want. Rather, real love means doing the hard thing, such as having a difficult talk, addressing issues, and confronting problems.

The modern world, social media, and television try to portray love in one way — that it is easy, effortless, and perfect. The only perfect, unconditional love that truly exists is the love God has for us. This love is known as agape love. 

This type of love is only possessed by God, as we as humans cannot possess this type of love. Our love is often polluted by conditions, the way a person makes us feel, or whether they are nice to us or not. 

Jesus commands us to love all people — even if they hurt us (Matthew 12:30-31). This is why love can be painful. Our loved ones can hurt us, but we still love them despite their actions because they are someone who means a great deal to us.

I have been told many lies by family members, which has made me distrust people. Despite all the lies and hurt, I could never say I hated them because I don’t.

All of the inflicted wounds, being talked down to, and invalidated feelings have hurt me, but it still doesn’t change that they are my family, and I care about them.

Maybe you have noticed this in your own life. It could be a parent was mean or critical of you, but you still love them. In this way, you know the type of pain that is associated with love.

When loved ones hurt us, it is more painful than a stranger on the street hurting us. Since we love them, when they hurt us, it feels as though our entire hearts are breaking. We often think, “How could my loved one do this to me? Don’t they know how much this hurts me?”

The answer to these questions is sin. We live in a sinful world, and where there is sin, there is going to be hurt and pain. Sin entered the world in the Garden of Eden, and it will continue until God makes everything new.

Hurting Others

Part of why love is painful is also seen in how we hurt others. Upon reflecting on my own life, I, too, have hurt many people that I love. Throughout the process of recovery from my eating disorder, I have said many hurtful things, and I regret each of them.

Even over the past few weeks, I have regretted many of my choices, words, and actions toward my loved ones. It’s painful how much we can destroy someone with a simple word or a simple action. It can break their heart and make them question everything.

It is at these times that we need to apologize to our loved ones for hurting them. More often than not, we didn’t mean to hurt them.

Sometimes I feel interactions with others would be easier if I could type it all out ahead of time and already know what will happen in order for me to be properly prepared.

Unfortunately, life doesn’t work like this, and we have to live life in real time. We cannot go back in time either and fix our mistakes. Some mistakes can be easier to fix than others, yet some leave lasting wounds.

Making Things Right

Part of apologizing is making things right with a person, especially if you want to keep the relationship with the person. Making it right with someone includes apologizing, talking things out with them, and asking for ways that you can repair the relationship.

Whether a friendship, a relationship with a sibling, or a romantic relationship has been severed by your actions, there are still ways you can restore a relationship with them.

It might not be the same as it used to be; however, sometimes, after difficulties and pain, you might have a stronger relationship with your loved one.

This will of course take time and effort, but if you truly want to repair a relationship with someone, it is not too much to ask.

Trust and hearts could have been broken, and it could take time until your loved one feels ready to open up to you again. It is also important to remember that even if you want to repair the relationship, they might not feel ready, or they might not want to ever repair the relationship.

This is a consequence of our actions, and we need to accept it. If a person doesn’t want to talk, see us, or repair the relationship, we don’t need to force them to, as it will only cause more pain.

None of us can avoid pain from our loved ones nor can we avoid hurting others. This is because love is truly pain, and to love someone is opening up your heart to pain. You love them so much; therefore, when they hurt you, it hurts much more than someone else.

In the same way, you also can hurt them and inflict the worst wounds on their heart. We need to be careful with our loved ones in our words, actions, and choices because, in a single day, we can lose them.

If you have a broken relationship with a loved one and you want to make it right today, I encourage you to do so. If your loved one is willing to let you back into their lives, use this opportunity carefully.

Understanding things might not be as they used to be, yet there is a possibility that your relationship with this person could become stronger. It will take work; however, if you truly want to repair the relationship, you will be willing to put in the effort.

If your loved one chooses to end ties with you, accept this and turn to God. Our relationship with God will never end and we can always talk with Him about anything. The love others have for us might change, but the love He has for us will never change.

We mess up and sin many times a day, yet His love for us never changes. We can always turn to Him, and He will welcome us with open arms. There is nothing in all creation that separates us from the love of God (Romans 8:31-39).

For further reading:

What Is Love According to the Bible?

What Is Authentic Love?

Why Does Jealousy Not Belong in Love?

Photo Credit: ©iStock/Getty Images Plus/Anetlanda

Vivian BrickerVivian Bricker loves Jesus, studying the Word of God, and helping others in their walk with Christ. She has earned a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Christian Ministry with a deep academic emphasis in theology. Her favorite things to do are spending time with her family and friends, reading, and spending time outside. When she is not writing, she is embarking on other adventures.

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