Obsessive love is a hypothetical state in which one person feels an overwhelming obsessive desire to possess another person toward whom they feel a strong attraction, with an inability to accept failure or rejection. Such a state should be differentiated from relationship obsessive–compulsive disorder (ROCD) that commonly includes doubts regarding one's own feelings towards an intimate partner, preoccupation with the partner’s feelings towards oneself, doubts about the rightness of the relationship and preoccupation with the perceived flaws of the partner. For most of history, "obsessive love" was considered as a type of perseverance, but in the late 20th century, love simpliciter was suggested to be a mental disorder.[according to whom?] Although not categorized specifically under any specific mental diagnosis by the DSM IV, some people argue that obsessive love is considered to be a mental illness similar to "attachment disorder, borderline personality disorder, and erotomania." [Peabody] Obsessive lovers may feel entirely unable to restrain themselves from extreme behaviors such as acts of violence toward themselves. They may be entirely convinced that their feelings are love, and may reject the idea that their severe obsession is not love. Obsessive love has been frequently used and/or exaggerated in mass media, often with a woman having such affections for a man in either a comical or terrifying fashion.
Hodgkinson, Liz (1991). Obsessive Love: How to Free Your Emotions and Live Again. Piatkus Books. ISBN978-0749911058.
Moore, John D (2013; originally published in 2006). Confusing Love with Obsession: When Being in Love Means Being in Control. Hazelden Publishing. ISBN9781592859641.Check date values in: |date= (help)
Peabody, Susan (1995; originally published in 1989). Addiction to Love: Overcoming Obsession and Dependency in Relationships (illustrated, reprint, revised ed.). Ten Speed Press. ISBN9780890877159.Check date values in: |date= (help)
Schaef, Anne Wilson (1989). Escape from Intimacy: Untangling the "Love" Addictions: Sex, Romance, Relationships (First printing ed.). HarperCollins. ISBN978-0062548603.