TYPES of LOVE depend on the love objects

1. Brotherly Love

      “Love thy neighbor as thyself”.  It is the most basic,

  underlying all others: the sense of responsibility,

  respect & care for other human beings, the wish to

  further their lives, based on a lack of exclusiveness

  (we are all one).

     The experience of union with all others, our sameness

  at our core, so center - relatedness.  Therefore, love

  between equals. Only in caring for those who do not

  serve us, aren’t useful to us, can love begin to unfold.

2. Motherly Love

      The unconditional affirmation of the child’s life &

  their needs, in 2 aspects - the care & responsibility

  essential to preserve their life & growth and an

  attitude which instills in them a love of living, giving

  them the feeling that it’s good to be alive & be on this

  earth! Giving the child both ‘honey and milk’! 

      Love between non-equals, altruistic, unselfish, so

  considered the most sacred of emotional bonds.

  Different from erotic love: helping the child grow

  means to want the child’s separation - the difficult task

  of wanting nothing for herself, only the happiness of

  the child - so letting go.

3. Erotic Love   

     Craving for complete fusion - with only one other

  human being, exclusive, not universal (like a & b). The

  most deceptive kind of love! - confused with ‘falling in

  love’, the collapse of barriers between strangers. Once

  the loved one is known no more closeness is sought.

      Most people, knowing themselves & others only

  superficially, experience separateness as mainly

  physical, so sex means ‘closing the gap’. Also, venting

  uninhibited rage / hate is often seen as intimacy. When

  sex & rage have lost it’s fire, people look for new

  partners to manufacture a new closeness, helped by the

  deceptiveness of sexual desire.

4. Self-Love

      Still considered ‘sinful’ to love oneself selfish. BUT

  modern man’s narcissistic selfishness is actually his lack

  of love for his true self: concern for himself as an

  individual, with all his intellectual, emotional & sensual


     Genuine love is an expression of productiveness via

  care, respect, responsibility & knowledge - an active

  striving for the growth & happiness of the loved one’. 

      The affirmation of one’s own life, happiness, growth

  & freedom is rooted in ones capacity to love.  One must

  be able to actively apply these to oneself in order to

  genuinely love another.

5. Love of God 

       The most mature form, having acquired the humility

   of sensing his limitations, experiencing God as the

   totality which man is striving for, the realm of the

   spiritual world, of love, truth & justice.

       To long for the attainment of the full capacity to

   love, for the realization of that which God is.


  “I can live for 2 months on a good compliment”

     Mark Twain.

  This group needs words: compliments, thanks,  

     appreciation,  encouragement, affection,

     requests (not demands)

  • By phone, text, letter, notes, email, but mainly

     face to face

  • Gather a list of kind, positive words & use them

     often, to build up  (not people-pleasing)

  • FOCUS is on what’s being said.


• This group needs quality, undivided attention

    - no distraction, doing things together and

    being focused on.

  • The activity is only a vehicle to create that

    sense of togetherness - what happens on the  

    emotional level is what matters.

  • It can be sympathetic dialogue - being drawn

    out & listened to,  sharing experiences,

    thoughts, emotions & desires in a friendly,

    uninterrupted context  (NO advice).

  •  FOCUS is on what’s being heard.


  This group needs to receive gifts - they’re

    visual symbols of love, (like the wedding ring)

    of being thought of. They’re important

   because symbols have emotional value.

  • The size & cost is not the important thing,

    but the face you’re thought of. They can be

    bought, made or found.

  • The ‘careful’ spouse (tight) of this type can

   consider that whatever money they spend is

   an excellent investment -  filling their mate’s

   emotional love tank will pay big dividends -   

   blue chip stocks in a happy marriage

  • Another form of gift giving is to there when

   the mate really needs you, like at the death of

   a parent, loss of job...


  • This group needs actions done specifically that

   suits them, as tangible expressions of being loved.

  • They require thought, time, planning, effort &

   energy - & if done in a positive spirit, are acts

   of love.

The actions done must be specifically what this

    type actually want, otherwise it doesn’t count.

• It’s imperative that this spouse let the other

   know exactly what fills their tank- no one is a

   mind reader.

  • When one spouse gives a criticism, the  

   ‘receiver’ can ask “ What is important about

   this for you?”  to understand the need. 

   Eventually the criticism can be turned into a

   request, that can possibly be met.


This group needs to be touched, lovingly, a

    powerful way to communicate love. This can

    include some or all of the five senses.  For

    some it’s food, others sex, others caresses, etc

  • To this type, some kinds of touch can be very

    irritating & any form of hostile touch will be


  • Some kinds of positive touch can take

    planning time & effort, others can be fleeting

    but meaningful.

  • The spouse of this type can be imaginative -

   finding new ways & places can be an exciting


    Humans are self-aware entities, of  
 being individuals - separate &  alone, 
 helpless to stop time & the inevitability 
 of death.  The desire for inter-personal 
 fusion is the most powerful striving of  
 humans, the most fundamental passion. 
   Modern man tries to achieve union by - 
 the work & pleasure routine, conformity  
 & creative activity, & are unsatisfying.
   “The awareness of human separation,
     without RE-union by LOVE, is the 
             source of all anxiety”

        Each of the 5 types of 
   people mainly feel loved 
      in one specific ‘way’ :

Home  •  SITE MAP  •  About Me  •  ACoA Traits  •  Article  • Books  •  Boundaries  •  Co-Dependence  • Course  •  Decisions  •  Definitions  •  Effective Responses  • Emotions  •  Family Roles  •   Friends  •   Healthy Rules  • Inner Child •  Links  •  Love  •  Recovery  •  Relationships  •  Toxic Rules  •  Trust 

TRUST - Why not & How toTrust.html

Adult-Children of alcoholics & other narcissists

SEXUAL ABUSE RECOVERYSex_Abuse_Recovery.html
Condensed from  
Condensed from  The ART OF LOVING   Erich Fromm