What Is Love?

radiosilence95's picture

I recently had to write an essay in English about what love is. This is probably one of the hardest essays I've ever had to write, because love is such a broad and subjective word. I could say that I "love" pizza, or that I "love" that girl's shoes...but what does it really mean to love? Each person's idea of love varies, so love is something you can't generalize. Love is the most abused word in the English language. We say it all the time, without ever really meaning it. You don't have to agree with my opinion, but this is what I think it is:

In essence, love is infinite. Not restrained by race, religion, sex, or any meaningless factor. Love is rare, even among married couples. You could be married to someone all your life without ever truly loving them. You may think you do, but you really don't. Love is often confused with infatuation and sexual desire.

Getting to the point:

Love is a contradiction. I believe that you can hate the person you love. Love is terrifying, ruthless, and painful. But it is also beautiful, comforting, and joyful. Love defies logic. You may not know why you love someone. You just do. It can be the scariest feeling in the world, but it's also wonderful. It's not about wanting to be with someone, it's about needing to be with someone. It takes patience, strength, and dedication to love, not chocolates and flowers and sappy poetry. Love is not a romance novel. The couples you see in movies like Twilight, Titanic, and Romeo and Juliet are cliched and overrated. That is not really how love works. Nothing hurts more than love, and nothing heals more than love.

There are many types of love. Familial love, friendly love, romantic love...I can honestly say that I love my cat Daisy, but that's a different kind of love. I love my friends. I love my Aunt Lori. I love Doritos. But I am not IN LOVE with them. I think there's a difference between loving someone and being in love with someone. I love my friend Victoria. I am IN LOVE with my best friend Amber.

Basically, love is not about flowers and chocolates. It is about seeing the worst and the best in one another. Love is courage. Love is honesty. Love is patience. Love is hatred. Love is acceptance. Love is anger. Love is selflessness and selfishness, forgiveness and bitterness. Love is a complex spiderweb of different emotions. It is not one emotion in itself. It is a billion different emotions, both negative and positive, rolled into a gigantic confusing ball.

People don't know how to love each other anymore. We see the fake, sappy love in movies, books, and poems, and we think that's what real love is. It's not. It's a lie. The reason that the divorce rate in America is over 60% is that people surrender the minute their love faces a challenge. They have no patience, courage, or strength. They think that the second love hits a rocky point, it's time to give up. The reason for so many broken marriages is that people think love is perfection. It's not. Love is so very far from perfect.

Love is not taking long walks on the beach. Love is holding on as your partner suffers through a nasty drug addiction. Love is not giving your partner roses. Love is holding his/her hand while he/she is breaking down and saying, "I'm here for you."

We cannot control who we fall in love with. It just happens.

That is all.


625539's picture

don't take this comment seriously

Love is not taking long walks on the beach. Love is holding on as your partner suffers through a nasty drug addiction. Love is not giving your partner roses. Love is holding his/her hand while he/she is breaking down and saying, "I'm here for you."

see only depressed and broken people get love

i am in love with nachos though
i couldn't accept it for the longest time... i was like, i love healthy food like spinach! and all that. but then i saw the beauty in nachos... their cheesy goodness and the crispyness of the chip. mmm. and then i let them into my heart and soul and stomach. it was beautiful and nothing hurt.
sometimes the nachos get mad at me. they're like, WHY ARE YOU THROWING ME INTO A BURNING OVEN to EAT ME but at the end of the day it is because i am trying to help them. and they know it, so they accept it. and it tears me up to see them crying for help in the oven, as in RELEASE US FROM THIS 450 DEGREE HEAT PRISON. but pain is necessary for beauty and the amazing feeling we get from the shared experience that is eating.

and sometimes it is so hard because i can't be with nachos all the time. but when i am i am so happy. and it makes it worth all the pain when i run out of tostitos.

i hope no one got too emotional reading my beautiful love story :3

radiosilence95's picture

Hahaha you are indeed a

Hahaha you are indeed a strange person

625539's picture

i was putting off my film

i was putting off my film studies paper

Dracofangxxx's picture

Oooh, that last part about the rocky parts of relationships

Soooo true.
Like, not to be all about me, but Boyfriend and I DO argue alot. But in the end of every arguments, things get better for both of us, not worse.

And I think that's what's important about fights. Like, if people don't fight, then you're not putting your whole heart into a relationship. If you don't care enough about what the other person does, then it's poinless and frankly kind of boring.
The feeling of fear and sadness that the person you love won't forgive you or leave you?

It just makes the happy, lovey moments that much better.

Beautiful journal. Thank you for this <3
Amazingly offensive <3

radiosilence95's picture

Fights help a relationship

Fights help a relationship grow, but too many of them make a relationship wither.

And your welcome :)

I was afraid people would read this and be like "Wow this chick is weird and her concept of love doesn't make any sense."

Dracofangxxx's picture

Haha, I know :)

It's not like we fight every night. We fight maybe once a week, like a little teeny lover's spat, and once a month I guess a little bigger, and a huge one is like once every four months.

And let me tell you, the huge ones damn make you appreciate how much you love someone.

and hey, I think weird is the best thing ever. Normality suuuucks.
Amazingly offensive <3

loreonpravus's picture

Very profound and

Very profound and evocative...

Y'know, maybe love is nothing but a biochemical reaction to make sure our genes get passed on, but we treat it as something that transcends every human being. It's something, that's for sure, and when you have something like that, you can't pigeonhole definitions.

radiosilence95's picture

That would be such a major

That would be such a major disappointment if it was nothing more than a chemical reaction for reproduction.

Screw science.

loreonpravus's picture

Isn't it, in a way? People

Isn't it, in a way? People like romanticizing abstract concepts like that. It might be and might not, and I don't think that's all there is, but like I said, the way we've been brought up- "love is everything" and all that, dramatic "I love you" moments in movies, etc.

Anyway, I'm not trying to be depressing, just being philosophical. No offense.

radiosilence95's picture

Hmm...you make a valid

Hmm...you make a valid point. But IS love everything? I was raised with the idea that you have nothing unless you're in love. Is that true? I don't know. Human emotions and behaviors are extremely complex. Maybe we only love the idea of being in love, and we aren't actually in love.

MacAvity's picture


I think love originated as a biochemical reaction to make sure our genes get passed on, but then evolved into something more than that.

radiosilence95's picture

That's a possibility. We

That's a possibility. We don't know everything. We may never know.

Dracofangxxx's picture

Can't believe nobody's said this yet, but

Baby, don't hurt me! Don't hurt me! No more...
Now I'm bobbing my head all Night at the Roxbury style. Man that's a good song XD
Amazingly offensive <3

radiosilence95's picture


What song is it?

Dracofangxxx's picture

What is Love

Seriously, how have you never heard of this song
Amazingly offensive <3

radiosilence95's picture

Let me think very

Let me think very carefully....

OOOHHH! That song. Haha, I just had a major brain fart.

625539's picture

i was thinking of this the

i was thinking of this the entire time as i wrote my love story about nachos

love_is_love's picture


This was seriously amazing... and super emotional to read haha although having my "jar of hearts" pandora station playing didn't help.

So glad I read this, and I agree with everything you said. Divorce in my family is so common, its ridiculous how easy they all gave up.

radiosilence95's picture

Why thank you. That just

Why thank you. That just made my day. Glad to know that people agree with me.

I know right? No one stays married anymore. My parents are divorced as well.