What makes a little child cling on to its mom ? Is it Love or is it due to Fear ? How can we define this attachment?
The little child lives in a world that is new for it and every single experience that it goes though as it tries to understand the world is out of fear. Only thing that is not fear for it is the scent of the mom. It takes comfort by attaching itself to mom. Mom reciprocates by unconditionally accepting it without making any judgement or trying to change the behavior of the little child. And so the love sprouts. If you think deep fear and love would be chicken and egg. Love cannot start without fear in the initial stage. Purely from a child perspective, the initial pinch of fear is what creates the attachment and child learns to love of mom.
But, is this attachment sufficient to grow love? As the love matures and the child gets used to the world that it came into and if it continues to cling on to mom the love will turn into hatred and anger. It takes until the teen years for the attachment based love matures and they start exploring freedom.
Same thing happens in romantic love as well. It starts based on attachment based emotions like crush -> infatuation ->respect-> admiration -> affection
But if the love has to grow past the initial stages it has to come out of this attachment based emotions and move to a growth based behaviors like acceptance, gratefulness, abundance, most importantly freedom.
So I would define mature love as giving without expecting and accepting without questioning. Some relationships stay in the attachment stage if both the partners are able to fulfill each others expectations, but growth there becomes difficult because each will be trying to fulfill others expectation. But for many other relationships, If it cannot stabilise in the nurishing stage and fails to move to growth though awareness, mindfulness and attention, the love is likely to collapse.