How To Tell A Genuinely Kind Person From A Manipulative Love-Bomber

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Joined: Nov 2022

Photo: Meg Aghamyan | Unsplash  How To Tell A Genuinely Kind Person From A Manipulative Love-Bomber

Love bombing is not a new concept. Article after article details how to recognize love bombing, what to do if you’re being love bombed, and how dangerous an early show of deep affection can be. And it’s good to be wary of love-bombers. 

But has the love-bombing fervor gone too far?

Are we sabotaging ourselves out of relationships with great, authentic people because of that faint whisper of they are too good to be true, they must be love bombing me echoing in our ears?

What Is Love Bombing?

“Love bombing” refers to when a person you’ve just started dating begins showering you with attention, affection, and gifts. Nice, right?

Not necessarily!

All this over-the-top complimenting and laser-focused attention can be the result of someone trying to exert power over you. You fall for someone who says they can’t imagine their life without you. Then, they take advantage of your dependence on their affection.

Suddenly, sweet texts become controlling ones, gifts come at a price, and you’re left placating them and trying to get back the sweet and loving person you first met.

How To Tell A Genuinely Kind Person From A Manipulative Love-Bomber

Photo: fizkes via Shutterstock

What should you do?

Get the heck out of that relationship! At the first signs that someone who smothers you with love might be suffocating you, it’s time to go.

That means if this person suddenly starts getting easily jealous, asks you to spend less time with family and friends to spend more time with them, wants to know your whereabouts at all times (to the point of asking for your location and passwords), sends you angry texts and profusely apologizes afterward — then you’re dating a love bomber.

It’s so hard to leave because they are experts at making you feel special and cherished, but these behaviors are pathological, and they’ll only keep getting worse.

Be strong. You’ve got this, and move on.

How to tell a genuinely nice guy (or gal) from someone love-bombing:

Okay… here’s where I diverge from what’s so popular to say in love-bombing articles.

Sometimes, a person is that great.

When I first met my partner nearly seven years ago, he was attentive, romantic, generous, and vocally head over heels for me in a way that made me… well, kind of not believe him. I’d been with the narcissistic love-bomber side of that before, and I wasn’t about to make the same mistake twice.

Boundaries vs pursuit 

I noticed any time I set a boundary, he respected it and didn’t push back. Our communication was open, and I told him when I felt things were moving too fast.

He texted all the time, but I wasn’t a huge texter. And he never made me feel guilty about it. He truly exemplified and acted on his values. He didn’t just talk a big game.

Gifts were gifts and came with no obligation (and later, I realized it’s his love language, and he enjoys buying gifts for all the special people in his life).

We collaborated on how we wanted to spend time together, and he never made me feel like it wasn’t enough. When we had a conflict, we talked about it like adults and never used harsh words. I felt like we were an equal team.



And I’m not alone! I’ve seen countless friends and clients enter relationships and wonder early on if it was too good to be true and if it was just that good.

Ups and downs vs consistent kindness 

In the words of Katherine, another coach over at Style My Profile:

“When I first met my partner, he did everything right that everyone else had done wrong: he openly told me how much he liked me, he never waited to text back, he was always keen to spend any amount of time with me, he talked about wanting to move our relationship forward. I was used to people I’d dated playing games and making me feel like the needier one, so I was naturally skeptical of someone who didn’t fit that mold. Why did he like me so much so quickly? I couldn’t possibly deserve that! What did he have up his sleeve? Was it all an act? Was he love-bombing me??

At every turn, he made sure he was checking in with me about how I was feeling. When I needed to put on the brakes or have a little space, he understood and would immediately adjust his actions. He’d say beautiful and flattering things about me, but they weren’t hyperbolic.

He’d text all the time, but if I didn’t respond for a while, he didn’t get jealous or overprotective — he knew I was outliving my life, and he loved that about me. Most importantly, he has been consistent through and through.”

With a love bomber, you get hots and colds. With someone who likes you and isn’t afraid to show it, you get support that hasn’t wavered for a moment in the two years we’ve been together. So look out and don’t be afraid to lean in!

The bottom line

It’s not always simple, but it’s worth watching for the signs someone is genuinely kind in a way you aren’t used to.

So if you start dating someone and they act smitten in all the ways we’ve described, how do you know if they’re genuine or a love bomber? It can be a bit of a fine line at the beginning!

My advice:

Don’t psych yourself out of something that may be amazing! But always keep the logical part of your brain at hand, ready to point out any early warning signs (behavioral swings, possessiveness, overpromising, etc.). When those arise, you run for the hills! If they don’t, congratulations — you’ve found the one 🙂

More for You:
Zodiac Signs That Are Terrible At Relationships (And Why)20 Little Things Women Do That Guys *Secretly* LoveThe Perfect Age To Get Married, According To Science5 Little Ways Men Wish They Could Be Loved — Every Single Day

Alyssa Dineen is a dating coach and stylist with 20-plus years of experience. Alyssa started Style My Profile to help people entering the modern world of online dating increase their matches and meet quality partners by perfecting their dating profiles.

Source: YourTango


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