I recognized in him the need to receive love. And he does father so gracefully without it.. Without having a father’s love himself. Without knowing what TO do, just becoming what he always needed and wanted. I was drawn to him … I recognize the feeling. I have lived in that space. When they all said I needed “tough love”, But I knew I was so in need..for so long..the defecit was so grave, I just needed a real dose of the real thing. I felt compelled..to give it to him. With no expectation of a relationship. With no more than a medicinal purpose. I continued to operate in the same manner as I always have, that I was given by my fathers absence, “give give give and give some more because then people might stay close”.. “Be extra nice, give them everything they could want so they have no logical reason to leave”. The mode of operation came full circle with this one. I finally gave to the grateful man. The graceful man. Who never took the absence of love as the victim, who instead became it. He was incredulous at first. Trying all the ways I had already experienced, to push me away. He said.. But you’re always just there. You don’t leave. After a while he began to believe that I may be an honest friend. And as time passes he realized that I meant no harm and that I was presented to him to bring him to the light. He began to love himself … And appreciate my influence and friendship. As he took steps towards self love, he took steps towards loving me too. And one day, he gave it all back to me. About 6 months into this relationship, I realize that everything has worked out the best way and the only way it could have. All my heart breaks served a purpose. All my “helping” was preparation for the right person. Myself. I conclude several theories from the self love journey. One, you must master self love before being able to love anything or anyone else. Two, it is not enough for people to tell you to love yourself, they must also administer the medicine of compassion and nurture as they guide you to examples of how to self love. Three, you also have to be brave enough to face your darkness alone. You just go through the dark night of the soul.