Lust Vs Love: Uncover the Difference With Facts

In the realm of human emotions, understanding the difference between love and lust can be a complex task. These two powerful emotions often intertwine, creating a web of feelings that can be challenging to decipher. This article will delve into the psychological aspects of love and lust, providing insights backed by scientific research to help you determine whether you’re in love or just experiencing feelings of lust.

What Is Romantic Love?

Romantic love, often referred to as “real love,” is a deep emotional connection that goes beyond physical attraction or sexual desire. It involves feelings of intimacy, affection, and a sense of deep bonding with another person. Love is about understanding, respect, and commitment. It’s about wanting to share your life with someone and being willing to sacrifice for them. According to a study on Love and Forgiveness, love is the basis for a moral psychology of forgiveness, involving both a ‘giving to’ and a ‘giving up’, leading to a profound sense of identity between a victim and a perpetrator.

Signs of Love

  • Deep emotional connection
  • Desire for emotional closeness
  • Long-term commitment
  • Willingness to sacrifice for the other person
  • Genuine care and concern

What is Lust?

Lust, on the other hand, is an intense sexual desire or craving. It is primarily focused on the physical and sensual aspects of attraction. Lust can be powerful and intoxicating, but it is often fleeting and lacks the emotional depth and commitment associated with love. A research on the Influence of Coercive Discourse on Women’s Pleasure sheds light on how lust can be influenced by external factors and societal norms.

Signs of Lust

  • Intense physical or sexual attraction
  • Desire for sexual intimacy
  • Focus on physical appearance
  • Little interest in emotional bonding
  • Relationship is primarily based on sex

Love Vs. Lust: What Is The Difference?

The main way to tell the difference between love and lust lies in the depth of the connection. Love is about an emotional bond, while lust is about physical attraction. Love involves a deep affection and commitment to another person, while lust is primarily about sexual desire and physical satisfaction. The Moral Psychology of Guilt discusses how guilt can be a factor in distinguishing between these two emotions

Lust vs Affection?

While lust is primarily about physical attraction and sexual desire, affection is a gentler, more enduring emotion. Affection can be a component of both love and lust, but it is more closely associated with love due to its focus on emotional connection and caring.

Can Lust Become Love?

Lust can potentially evolve into love as individuals get to know each other better and form an emotional bond. However, this is not always the case. Sometimes, once the initial intensity of lust fades, there may be little left to build a deeper, more enduring relationship on.

Can You Feel Lust And Love Simultaneously?

Yes, it is possible to feel both lust and love for the same person. In fact, in the early stages of a romantic relationship, these two emotions often coexist. However, as the relationship evolves, it is the depth of love and emotional connection that will determine its longevity.

Is Lust More Powerful Than Love?

Infatuation, lust, and love can all evoke intense and urgent feelings, especially in the early stages of a relationship. However, while infatuation and lust tend to diminish over time, love has the ability to endure and grow.

How to Tell if the Person You’re With is in Love or Lust With You?

Look for signs of emotional connection and commitment. If the person is genuinely interested in you as an individual, values your happiness, and is willing to make sacrifices for the relationship, it is likely love. If the focus is primarily on physical attraction and sexual satisfaction, it may be lust.

Closing Thoughts

Understanding the difference between love and lust can help us make better decisions in our relationships. While both emotions can be intense and powerful, it is the depth of emotional connection and commitment that distinguishes love from lust.


Q1: Is it love or lust to have a crush?

A crush can be either love or lust, or a bit of both. It often starts with physical attraction (lust), but can develop into deeper feelings over time (love).

Q2: What comes first love or lust?

Typically, lust comes first, being a primal response to physical attraction. Love often develops later as you get to know the person and form an emotional connection.

Q3: How does lust start?

Lust often starts with physical attraction and sexual desire. It can be triggered by physical characteristics, pheromones, or even fantasies.

Q4: How long does lust usually last?

Lust can be quite fleeting, often fading after the initial stages of a relationship. However, it can last longer in some cases, especially if it evolves into a deeper emotional connection.

Picture of Claire Sy

Claire Sy

Mary Claire Sy is a registered social worker, certified psychosocial support trainer, and counselor. She is an alumna of Silliman University in the Philippines. With her expertise, she helps couples build and maintain strong relationships.

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