Today we live in a world where we can be with the person we fall in love with. There is a free choice to enter into a relationship or marriage with a partner or significant other. This is in contrast to the idea of love in centuries past. In the 19th and early 20th centuries, many marriages and unions were arranged by families. Two people, whether they loved each other or not were placed together and a legal contract was drawn up between the two families. Love was not considered an important issue and at best it was hoped that the two parties would learn to love each other.
Times have changed immensely. People enter into relationships freely. Arranged and forced marriages are illegal in most western nations. There is a concept that romantic love is a radical idea. Today people will make great sacrifices to be with the person that they love. Many will relocate, change jobs, alter family commitments and terminate friendships when the person they love is involved.
Is Romantic love such a radical concept? although it is true that people may behave in a different manner when they are in love with another person, this is often short-lived. This does change if the relationship is going to be a long lasting one. Furthermore, romantic love does suggest mutual caring between individuals. Couples show an interest in each other to make efforts to get to know each other and their interests. They are also concerned about each other’s well being. This doesn’t always last and there is every chance that the relationship could end in a disappointment. However, oppression and unhappiness were far more likely in unbalanced unions where one member held more power over the other.
Is romantic love different from other forms of love? Yes, romantic love is far different. For example, family love is a completely different concept. It is a prescribed form of love. We may genuinely love our family members but the love often exists because it is what society expects. How many times have we caught ourselves saying or thinking something like, “I love my parents but I don’t like them very much.”Romantic love is far from this idea. The two parties are together because of a mutual love for each other even though there is every possibility it could be short-lived.
Is romantic love all about impressing another person? No, There is no doubt that some people will do things not in their character to catch the eye of the person they are in love with. However, in long-lasting relationships, many people often claim that they came to new self-realization by loving their partner. Love offered a chance to explore new avenues and interests. It is through this exploration that individuals often learned things about themselves that they were not aware of. Love leads to a whole new voyage of self-discovery.