True love comes through the true self. The perfect conduit for love is an honest person—pure of heart, healed of trauma. For love to come through us without distortion, we must not be barricaded by defenses or poisoned by wounds from the past. We must be a clear vessel.
If we are living not from our true self but from a defended, distorted reality we will fail to love truly. If, in childhood, we have hidden our true selves from the crippling clutches of our parents and a world that would crush us and we have not healed this, our adult expressions of love will be distorted. Until our true self is redeemed, our love will be filtered through our child’s murky memories of terror and betrayal and will always have a hidden agenda: a secret, unconscious need for rescue, and when that fails—revenge. We will be incapable of affirming the fullness of life in those we claim to love and we will even doubt our own lovability—and withhold affection from ourselves.
The source of our compromised ability to love is rooted in the necessary defenses that we built in childhood. We built these emotional defenses to protect our pure essence from the violations we received from our parents and others. Until we carefully dismantle our defenses through the painful grieving process, they will cloud and distort our love. If we refuse to heal, our attempts to love will never be true.
But if we do heal, if we do grieve our traumas, we will be able to love, deeply and truly.