Why Romantic Love Isn't The Most Important Love You Should Pursue In Life

by Lauren Martin

Love, love, goddamn love. I love you, I love you not. I love him, her, us, the moon.

I love the idea of love, but I hate the idea that love is the only thing that I’m supposed to really love.

While I understand that love may just be the most honest human emotion we possess, I also believe that love doesn’t need to be solidified by another living, breathing human being, nor does it need to come from the mouth of someone else to be real.

Love is necessary, but it’s not necessary on the level society has led you to believe. It's led you to believe that your worth comes from finding a man or woman to say those words to you, to wrap his or her arms around you and whisper it in your hair and on your cheeks.

Society has conditioned you to think that loving anything else is just the precursor to finding the real thing. That the love you have for your job, your friends, your family are only holding places, appetizers for the one love that’s real.

They’ve put pressure on you to believe that life is not complete until you’ve found someone to whisper “I love you.”

To be frank, I’m fed up with this notion of love. I’m tired of it being the only real thing. I’m tired of believing someone else’s love is the only love that’s worth my time. I’m tired of thinking my life hasn’t really started yet because I don’t have anyone who loves me.

Because I find love in other places, places that will always love me back and never break my heart. I find love in obscure notions and books and dead poets.

And for right now and forever (if need be), that’s enough for me. My life is complete and I am happy, and I’ve find so many important things besides a man to love me.

I love art: museums, galleries and impressionist paintings. I love jazz music and strolls through Central Park. I love my friends, my job and the people I see every day.

I love the fall and the spring and those hot summer days. I love coffee-flavored ice cream and the way a good book smells. I love reading in the afternoons and watching too much TV at night. I love my shows on Netflix and movies by Woody Allen, Federico Fellini and Martin Scorsese.

I love my parents and my brother and my sister. I love my home, my dog and my cat. I love to love things and I believe this affair could really last a lifetime.

I love getting absorbed by, obsessed with and absolutely enamored of things around me. I love becoming completely indulged in my love affairs, smothering them until we both can’t breathe. I love seeing them whenever I want and never playing games with them.

I love learning about them, where they come from, who they’ve been with and where they’re going. I love following their history and their future, becoming another fan, another lover of them.

I love telling people about my loves and my passion. I love sharing our stories and inviting people to join in our romance. I love introducing them to my parents and friends, taking them to dinner parties and weekend trips.

I love showing them my apartment and taking the subway with them. I love that they are there when I get home from work and when I wake up in the morning. I love that they will never leave unless I tell them to.

When did loving your life, your passions and your days become so unimportant? When did the love of someone else become the only important kind of love there is? If you ask me, your life should be about finding as many things to love as possible and letting those things love you back.

Let the love you make yourself be enough for you, because even when you do find the "real" thing, those loves will still be there, and will still be important.

Stop letting everyone else dictate what kind of love is worthy. Don't let people make you think you're not adequate without someone loving you.

Life is about finding love everywhere and forgetting about that kind of love everyone has made you believe is so goddamn important. Love starts and ends with you and no one can make you feel unloved without your consent.

Photo credit: Patrik Karlsson/Flickr