The ‘Love At First Sight’ Myth

Let me start by saying I actually believe in ‘love at first sight’.

I just think its named wrong. ‘At first sight’ implies it’s a visual thing. And writers and film-makers keep perpetuating this myth by having our romantic heroes fall for the physical attributes of their intended lover.

Too often it’s all about the eyes.

Someone is always lost in them, whether they’re blue, brown, green, or have that faraway look. Somewhere in some text the eyes are casting a spell on an unsuspecting soul.

Or is it the tall dark stranger?

One look and our main character is taken by the way they wear their hair, or the way they style themselves for interested parties. Perhaps they are tall, masculine, feminine or attractive in other ways.

And this is where we have it wrong.

Those in love knew they connected with the person on first meeting, but not physically. They hit it off the way we sometimes do with friends. We don’t understand why it feels like we’ve known them for a while, but there’s a comfortability there. So the feeling is similar whether the person shares our lives as a buddy or a life partner.

But here’s the difference.

Others around us see what’s happening. They understand we’re falling for something other than a mere friendship. You say ‘they’re not my type’. That’s because they’re not, physically. We think the way they look constitutes whether they will be a love interest. To us, it wasn’t ‘love at first site’. No. It was ‘love at first meeting’.

As the dust settles…

…we realise this person is more than just a friend. Wayward romantic thoughts haunt us until eventually we say it to ourselves – “I’m in love”.

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One thought on “The ‘Love At First Sight’ Myth

  1. This topic comes up in Rainbow Rowell’s book “Attachments “. I don’t want to spoil the way it goes, because I really recommend this clever and soulful story. (I talked about it in a blog entry, but it’s a spoiler. )

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