this is one of those "old adages" that i can't remember the exact phrasing for, it's something along the lines of the thread title, though.
personally, i've heard this adage frequently over the years. it would be incorrect to say that i found it silly, or wrong, or objectionable. however, it was always, for me, something that i found vaguely disquieting; it was something i never really understood, or could evaluate with regards to its truth- this made me highly suspect of the adage, and the people who would parrot it, without really knowing why i felt that way.
just lately, while thinking about love and relationships, i came to an unhappy conclusion and immediately thereafter thought of this adage: it was my 'aha, now i get it' moment.
however, i think my understanding of what this adage means is not really what's generally intended. it strikes me, in fact, that this adage might indeed be true for all people, but for different reasons depending on MBTI type.
the conclusion i came to that lead me to lend credulity to this adage was this: i don't love myself, and because i don't, i would be ashamed to present "who i am" to someone that i was in love with. i would be afraid of that rejection. hence, until i am happy with who i am and love myself, no one else whom i am really interested in will be able to love me- i won't give them the chance. on the other hand, anyone who thinks that they love me (romantically) probably has a misconception about who i really am, and therefore loves the idea they have of me, but not me.
it strikes me that this is a very INTP sort of thing to say, and that other types might not identify with it at all, but that they still might find that the adage holds true- for a different reason.
i wanted to ask you all: what do you think about this adage? have you experienced its truth in your life? is it for a reason similar to mine, or something completely different?