An article I recently read on Psychology Today got me thinking about what many adults refer to as ‘young love’. Entitled ‘Teenagers in Love’ (https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sticky-bonds/200906/teenagers-in-love), the article speaks about how this controversial topic is seen from the point of view of parents. Unsurprisingly, many adults are not only disapproving of dating during your teen years, they are ignorant towards it, often dismissing it as nothing more than ‘puppy love’. But how does this compare to the opinion of a teenager who is actually experiencing this so called ‘love’?
First of all, your childhood experiences and relationships with other people are undoubtedly essential to shaping who you become as an adult. All the memories you form, experiences you share, all the highs and lows of growing up, are all important for your emotional well-being as a child and as an adult. Girlfriends and boyfriends are no exception. The first people you experience intimacy with, both on a physical and emotional level, will be paramount to shaping your views on love in the future. It is a time where you are both exploring a new yet extremely important concept for the first time, and as such should not be taken lightly.
But the question is, do us teens truly know what love is when we are still so emotionally immature? I believe that the answer is yes. As the article outlines, it is easy for parents to accept a child’s love for them as genuine. However, this kind of acceptance is not as apparent when this love is directed towards girlfriends or boyfriends. This kind of love should never simply be dismissed. Even if teenagers are too emotionally naive to be experts in love, that doesn’t mean they emotions they do feel are irrelevant. A study by Dr Nancy Kailish revealed that, of 1600 people aged 18-92 who had never tried a reunion with a lost love, 56% said they would not want to go back to their first loves, 19% were not sure, but 25% said they would! The genuineness of first love just simply cannot be denied, if after all those years people are still thinking about it. This kind of love does not come often, and for some people all subsequent relationships after their first ones are just never the same.
Until next time,