What is Love Bombing – and 3 Signs to Look Out For
We’ve all met someone who feels too good to be true.
Maybe you went on a date with someone who says you’re the best person they’ve ever met - even though you've only spent a few hours together.
Maybe your partner starts showering you with compliments, even though you’ve been having more arguments lately.
Love-bombing may feel nice in the beginning. But in the long term, it can cause more harm than good.
Here at KMA, we’re passionate about helping our clients get the most out of all areas of their lives – including their relationships.
For over 14 years, we’ve been educating couples on how to make their relationships stronger. We’re passionate about teaching clients how to advocate for their needs in relationships.
We’ve created this article to help you learn how to diffuse love bombing before it gets too serious.
By the end of this article, you’ll have a clear definition of what love bombing is, 3 signs to watch out for, and steps you can take if you’re being love-bombed.
What is Love Bombing?
Love bombing is a pattern of behaviour in which your partner is overly affectionate and wants serious commitment very quickly.
Examples of love bombing include:
- Giving you expensive gifts
- Telling you that you’re “the one” after just meeting
- Ignoring any of the boundaries that you attempt to set
- Constantly showering you with compliments and flattery
All of these things may make you feel good - and that’s okay. The point of love bombing is to make you feel good.
But when someone is love bombing you, they intend to make it more difficult for you to set boundaries and keep your distance from them. This can become an unhealthy form of manipulation.
But how do you know whether you’re being love-bombed or just in the early stages of a new relationship?
What’s the Difference Between Love-Bombing and the Honeymoon Phase?
Love Bombing at the beginning of a relationship can sometimes feel like part of the honeymoon phase. But there are two significant differences between the two.
In the honeymoon phase, the other person’s questions and affection are driven by the desire to get to know you.
When you’re being love-bombed, the other person uses compliments and flattery to gain control over you.
Compliments and flattery aren’t red flags – as long as the other person is willing to take their time getting to know you.
In a healthy relationship, you should feel comfortable setting boundaries and taking time for yourself without worrying about how the other person will react.
What are the 3 Signs of Love Bombing?
1. They want serious commitment right away
It can feel nice to feel wanted, but a partner who is love bombing you may expect serious commitment right away.
Suppose someone is throwing out terms like “soulmate,” “marriage,” and “the one” after only knowing you for a few weeks. In that case, it’s important to take a step back and evaluate whether you’re happy with how fast the relationship is progressing.
2. They’re overly possessive of your time
At the beginning of a relationship, it’s normal to want to spend as much time as you can with the other person.
But if your partner gets upset when you want to visit a friend instead, or becomes frustrated when you have to leave them for work, it’s an indicator that they want all of your time to their self.
3. You feel overwhelmed by the relationship
Sometimes, being with the right person can feel all-consuming. You may think of each other throughout the day,
In a healthy relationship, both of you are equally dedicated to each other.
Love bombing feels like an unequal dynamic – the other person is putting in more time and effort than you are. The more you pull back, the more attention and time they dedicate to you.
From constant texting to over-the-top PDA, you may be feeling overwhelmed (and sometimes even trapped) in the relationship.
What Should I Do if I’m Being “Love-Bombed”?
If you think you’re being love-bombed, that doesn’t necessarily mean it has to be the end of your relationship.
Some steps you can take include:
- Creating firm boundaries with the other person
- Having a conversation about your mutual goals and needs in the relationship
- Talking to a trusted friend or family member about what you’re experiencing
Another step that can help is seeking out relationship counselling. A counsellor can help you to develop clear communication strategies and set boundaries for a healthier relationship.
While love bombing is not always dangerous, it can lead to a pattern of behaviour that puts you at risk.
If you feel that you may be at risk of harm, there are several helplines you can contact for immediate support. Access this list of Toronto-based help for intimate partner violence for additional resources.
Next Steps to Dealing with Love Bombing
After reading this article, you now have an understanding of what love bombing is, how it differs from the honeymoon phase, and how to recognize if you’re experiencing love bombing.
Here at KMA, we’re passionate about helping our clients have healthy, loving, and successful relationships.
Whether you’re interested in attending counselling as an individual or with your partner, our therapy process begins with an introductory appointment.
We’ll establish your goals, create a customized plan of action, and match you with the best therapist to suit your needs.
If you’re not yet ready to book an appointment, read these articles for more information:
- To learn more about introductory appointments, read: What Should I Expect in a Therapy Introductory Appointment?
- To learn how to communicate better with your partner, read: 3 Tips to Improve Communication in Your Relationship
- To learn more about couples counselling, read: Will Couples Counselling Help Me?