“So, was it love at first sight?” - The assuming question that many couples are asked numerous times over the course of their relationship. The expected answer usually goes something like “Yes, from the moment I saw him, I knew that he was the one!” While this is great for those who get to live this experience, posing this question perpetuates the idea that couples need to have some fairytale love story that’s worth sharing with family and friends. For those that are single, it idealizes the notion that love at first sight is something to be sought after and negates the fact that the journey to growing in love with someone can be quite beautiful.
Love at first SIGHT also implies that we are falling in love with the appearance and idea of someone before we truly get to know them.
Love at first SIGHT also implies that we are falling in love with the appearance and idea of someone before we truly get to know them. In the days of social media and dating apps, we experience this now more than ever. Think about the last time you were scrolling down a potential bae’s Instagram feed for just a little too long. You probably imagined what an entire evening with that person could be like; from their personality and what they would wear, to what you guys would talk about. Maybe you went as far as imagining the proposal and the wedding too! Yes, we said it, and y’all know exactly what we’re talking about! We all have those Instagram besties, husbands and wives that we have never had an actual conversation with and may never even meet in person. But the point is that you can’t really know or love someone by just looking at them. You’ll start to find that when you do finally go on that date, you’re completely underwhelmed that she doesn’t seem as bubbly as she appeared in her photos, or that he isn’t as handsome in person as on his Instagram. You get so distracted by the false expectations you created, that you miss out on the things that actually went well.
There is somewhat of a false expectation that you should have sparks and fireworks the moment you meet someone to know if they’re your soulmate
Now let’s address how this also perpetuates the infamous “cancel culture” that we live in. The expectation that you should have sparks and fireworks the moment you meet someone to know if they’re your soulmate is purely false. And sometimes when or if we don’t feel that initially, we immediately become discouraged in the idea of true love with that individual. Now, we do agree that there should be some sort of initial attraction, but if he or she doesn't check every single box on your list, that is not a reason to run away. If he forgets to open the door one time, or she is a little standoffish on the first date, those are also not reasons to “cancel” them and run away. We are not perfect beings; thus our relationships are not perfect either. So even if you’re lucky enough to have sparks and fireworks the moment you meet your soul mate, at some point you’ll need more than that to make the relationship last.
Love at first sight is not our personal story, and that’s okay.
Love at first sight is not our personal story, and that’s okay. For starters, we spoke to each other online for at least a month before we met in person. We didn’t realize it then, but this presented an opportunity to get to know one another better before placing any unrealistic expectations. Of course, there were the initial butterflies and nervous feelings at first sight, but love; we wouldn’t describe it that way. It was more of an intrigue and a desire to get to know each other more. And that’s exactly what we did, until eventually the love came and stayed.
Here are our 3 tips for not letting your love at first sight dreams ruin your chances at love:
Eliminate False Expectations
False expectations will ruin a relationship before it even begins. Go into every new date with an open mind and willingness to learn who the other person is, rather than expecting them to fit into some mold that you have created. You may be surprised by what you’re attracted to, but you’ll never have the opportunity to discover this if you don’t give others a chance.
Build a Friendship First
We can truly say that at the foundation of our relationship is a genuine friendship. We are besties and that is what has kept us through the moments that we didn’t find one another so “attractive”. For some reason we place less pressure on our friends to be perfect than our significant others. So the next time you go on a date, treat it like a lunch date with a friend rather than a potential husband or wife. You’d be surprised at how much the pressure is lifted to allow for a much more enjoyable time.
Understand that Each Relationship Journey is Unique
Seriously, this is important. Love at first sight may be your story, and it may not. Try to enjoy the journey for what it is rather than what society says it should look like. This is something that we continue to live and experience even after years of being together.
All of this is not to say that love at first sight doesn’t exist, but just that it’s not everyone’s story. There are many happy couples who knew their partner was the one from the day they met. Just the same, there are couples who had to grow into love with one another, like we did. No journey is better than the next, just different. And so, by waiting for that immediate attraction or connection to give someone a chance, you may be walking straight past the person that’s meant for you. The reality is that true and lasting love is built over time, and that instant connection can fade if it wasn't meant to be in the first place.