The Most Important Things To Remember About Love

There’s nothing more amazing, exciting and confusing than falling in love. When you’re in the middle of your own love story, it’s easy to forget that there was a time before – and it’s hard to admit that there could be a time after. Here are the 10 most important things to remember about love, whether you’re living your happily ever after or still waiting for your dream guy.

  1. Love can grow and it can fade. We’re so quick to dismiss someone after a so-so first date when maybe they actually deserve a second chance. Love can always grow – there won’t always be fireworks at the beginning. Unfortunately, if you can start liking someone after knowing them for a while, you can also stop. It’s super frustrating that even when we’re in the throes of new love, we have to keep the realism alive and realize that it might not work out the way we planned.
  2. Forever is a pretty long time. Of course it’s awesome if you find your person, but even Meredith Grey’s (platonic) person moved away. Come to think of it, even her romantic person, well, died. So sometimes forever is just too long and the love that you think will last for the rest of your life just won’t. It sucks, but hopefully you won’t be given a super cheesy breakup line, which would just make things that much worse.
  3. It looks different every time. If you’ve been in love a few times, you know that every relationship is different and everyone’s vision of romance is unique. Even if you’ve only had one love so far, you still know that next time, you’ll do things differently. It would be pretty boring if every single relationship we had was the exact same, so this isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
  4. Being needy is not the same as being in love. If you think you need someone to complete you or take care of you or you just want to brag about your amazing new boyfriend, that’s a sure sign that you should take a massive dating hiatus.
  5. Respect is the foundation of love. This is why you see so many couples who seem to fight all the time and complain about each other. They’re always making fun of each other’s bad habits and you wonder what they’re even doing together. If you don’t respect each other, your love is definitely not anything even approaching real. Respect will help you get through the tough times and make sure you treat each other with kindness and compassion (which the modern dating world is sorely lacking).
  6. Balance is key. A one-sided relationship is not much of a relationship at all. It’s one thing if you ask a guy out, it’s another if you’re the one making every single plan since and he’s putting in zero effort. Love means being invested in each other and interested in where things are going. If you ever feel like you’re the only one doing all the work, that’s a massive red flag.
  7. It’s OK to keep things private. In our social media-obsessed universe, it seems like everyone devotes their Instagram accounts to their boyfriends and doesn’t stop sharing details that should really be kept private. Real love isn’t about Facebook likes or bragging rights. It’s easy to forget that and of course it’s OK to talk about the person you love sometimes, but try not to make it a habit. It’s kind of embarrassing for everyone else.
  8. Silence is not actually golden. If you’ve fallen for someone, your usual instinct is to talk your friends’ ears off about how lucky you are and how you can’t believe you found this magical person. If you want to keep totally silent and never mention your boyfriend in casual conversation, that might be a sign that you’re more in love with love itself than your boyfriend.
  9. Love should feel exciting. Of course love is pretty terrifying – you open yourself up to getting hurt and that’s never super fun. But if your relationship doesn’t feel exciting, you’re not actually in love and there isn’t much chance of things improving. Even just sitting around and talking to your boyfriend should be more fun than anything else you could ever do. Otherwise, what’s the point?
  10. It’s OK not to lead separate lives. We seem to think that you have to keep parts of the single lifestyle going strong when you do fall in love, and that you’re super weak if you want to see your boyfriend all the time. But being in love is all about merging your two lives. It’s totally fine if you want to do everything together. You’ve been waiting for this, haven’t you?
Aya Tsintziras is a freelance lifestyle writer and editor from Toronto, Canada. In addition to writing about dating and relationships for Bolde, she also writes about movies, TV, and video games for ScreenRant and GameRant. She has a Political Science degree from the University of Toronto and a Masters of Journalism from Ryerson University. You can find her on Twitter @ayatsintziras and on Instagram @aya.tsintziras.