Our expert says:
A fascinating question, CK. Isn't part of the puzzle that part of "loving" someone is primarily within us, and about us, and not really about them at all ? It's rather like hunger, which is a normal aspect of ourselves, though it is usually attached to some available food. It can also become focussed on food we see in the window of a closed shop, which we may hunger for, but cannot have and eat. So with someone cruel or manipulative or otherwise undesirable, we can "love" them, in a manner that is actually almost entirely about our need to love, and our dreams about and attachment to, the person we hoped they would be and want them to become, rather than any actual affection for the person they really are.
And having known you closely, like all scornful former lovers, he knows exactly what to say to really would and upset you. Try not to take such comments too much to heart, recognizing them as a well-chosen attempt to hurt you, rather than as an acurat description of you.
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