"True Love Never Dies" & Other Lies We Believe About Love
Updated March 20, 2021
Medically Reviewed By: Karen Devlin, LPC
We have all heard the popular phrase, "true love can't die." No matter how many times it is said, death, divorce, and breakups split even the best couples all the time. Just because someone has their one true love for a while, people change, things happen, and there is no guarantee those feelings will last. For hundreds of years, many have tried to come up with an explanation for love, but they often miss the mark. Here are a few more lies we believe about it and why you should not fall for them.
Love At First Sight
"Love at first sight" is a popular concept in fairy tales and movies. It happens when two people, who have never met, suddenly catch each other's eye from across the room and instantly know they have found their match. While many people will claim they knew they would marry their significant other long before their relationship began, that sudden spark does not happen for everyone.
There are countless stories of two people growing to love one another over time and those who felt something intensely at first eventually parting ways. The moral of the story is, do not shrug off someone just because you do not feel drawn to them immediately, and do not believe you will stay with someone no matter what just because of your initial feelings.
Your Soulmate Is Out There
The idea of a soulmate is promising. The guarantee that somewhere out there is your perfect match, one person who will uniquely understand you as no one else will, gives us hope when we ask, "does true love exist?"
While soulmates do exist, it does not mean that there is just one out there for you. In fact, a soulmate is anyone you connect with deeply, whether it is a romantic partner, friend, or family member. Do not get caught up in the idea that you must search for the one you are meant to be with. Soulmates come along more often than you think.
Love Means Never Having to Say, "I am Sorry"
Whoever spread this idea about love had it all wrong. One of the most important things about love is mutual respect. This includes apologizing when someone gets hurt. People make mistakes, and you can guarantee any couple who has ever truly been in love is no exception. Whether you intend to hurt your partner's feelings or not, it is going to happen. When it does, part of repairing the damage is saying sorry or fixing what went wrong.
This is one of the most dangerous lies about love out there. Love should never hurt, whether that be physical, emotional, or mental. While love is challenging, and painful experiences do happen in relationships, if your partner is constantly hurting you in some way, that is a major red flag of abuse.
A partner who does hurt you may apologize. But, if they do not attempt to fix their behavior or repeat their hurtful tendencies time and time again, you need to leave. You might feel like you are letting them down or giving up on them, but your safety and health are the priority.
Love Conquers All
We are often taught the fantasy that if people loved one another more, all the world problems would be fixed. Unfortunately, love is not always the answer to life's tests. In fact, even couples who deeply love one another often require more.
Relationship counseling is a popular tool to help couples who need more than love to fix their problems, and it saves many failing partnerships. However, in some cases, two people who are still in love do choose to part ways. Not every relationship survives or even works well simply because two people feel a certain way about each other.
Love Is All You Need
Knowing that food, water, and shelter are our basic needs, this lie is obvious. Despite this, love is important for your overall well-being, just not in the traditional sense. Self-love is far more important for your mental health and is much more long-lasting than relying on a romantic partner to fulfill you.
Loving yourself is a concept we hear about often, but very few people go out of their way to do it. There are lots of ways to practice self-love. Eating healthy, exercising, meditating, and positive self-talk are just a few. If you love yourself, you will treat yourself with kindness, embrace yourself, and have gratitude for yourself. You will let go of past hurt, guilt, and insecurities too. Growing your sense of self-love will keep you happier and more confident than relying on someone else would.
Time Heals All Wounds
Time can indeed help heartbreak, but you might need much more. Self-love, self-care, and some one-on-one time with a licensed mental health professional prove effective at helping people overcome painful situations in their lives. In fact, suffering silently with health conditions like anxiety and depression for long periods can result in feelings getting worse. While it is nice to think that our problems with love will disappear in time, this rarely is the case if there are no other tools to help.
All Is Fair In Love (And War)
This lie implies that when two people are in love, anything goes. This is not the case. Respecting a partner's boundaries is key to any healthy relationship. Just because that person is romantically involved with you, it does not give you a right to talk to them, treat them, or touch them in any way you want (or for you to be talked to, treated, or touched in ways that make you uncomfortable). When in doubt, talk about what is okay and not okay in your relationship to avoid hurt feelings.
Love Will Find A Way
Sometimes we get put in difficult situations in our relationships. For example, when a job change puts two people on different sides of the country. While some relationships can weather through just about anything, others need certain conditions to thrive. It is silly to believe that just because two people love each other, they can put aside all their other feelings or obligations. Sometimes, love must be sacrificed for a bigger or more urgent cause, whether we like it or not.
Why It Is Important Not To Believe The Lies
Although these clichés about love work for poetry, they do not bode well for real-life advice. This is because they lead us to believe a lot of false ideas about love. Here are just a few of the ideas they spread and why they matter.
They Do Not Tell Us About Real Love
Real love looks different for every couple, and it is a concept that is not easy to write in words. Trying to define love fit a lie creates a false idea of what love is or what it could be. The only person who can define what love is for you is you. And your heart will be a better judge than a quote that sounds good.
They Trick People Into Unhealthy Relationships
Ideas like "love hurt" and "all is fair in love (and war)" set the stage for the idea that relationships are supposed to be hectic. They minimize the importance of the boundaries, respect, and safety that should be found in all partnerships. Chaotic love is great for dramatic storylines but quickly turns unhealthy in reality. Never settle for a love that needs turbulence to survive.
The Lead To Heartache
If you start to believe love means never having to say "I'm sorry" or that time heals all wounds, it downplays the importance of real feelings. If someone you love has hurt you, you do not have to ignore those feelings simply because you have been led to believe that is what happens in a relationship. Some love issues need an apology or someone to go out of their way to right their wrongs. Others might need the help of a therapist. Part of true love is respecting one another, especially emotionally.
They Create More Lies
Not finding your "soulmate" or not feeling those intense feelings of love, at first sight can often make someone feel like they are doing something wrong when it comes to love. If you have a very rigid idea of what love is supposed to be and you are not finding that, it is easy to get stuck in the thought that you are meant to be alone. This, of course, is not the case. You might have to change your definition of what love is.
Does love exist? Of course, it does, but it is much different from what the lies tell us. These popular (but false) beliefs that have spread over time change and limit actual love. Before you fall into the trap of thinking love is supposed to feel or look a certain way, look in your heart and find the real answer.
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