What is love?

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What is love? Everybody loves certain things; people, pets, food. But is this the same type of love? If not, how many different types of love are there? So many boggling questions, which let us be honest, we’ll never really understand, but we can at least make a good start.

Certainly with the rise of social media the term love is used to describe almost anything and everything. Whether it’s confessing our infatuations with celebrities or declaring our admiration for clothes, why do we feel the need to tell the whole world that we love them? We consider love to be an extremely powerful emotion, and to some this definition may describe how they feel about a said celebrity. As we are told constantly, love is subjective, certain people are attracted to and only love certain people; we don’t know what love feels like to others or why in fact people love anyone at all.

With that being said, is the term love thrown around too loosely? Surely it should be reserved for when it actually means something special, rather than just telling every Tom, Dick and Harry. Yet, whilst it is used in a lot of senses now, we do know that there is difference in what we mean when we say love. Whilst I fully understand that you love Harry Styles, I don’t for a moment actually think that you are in love with Harry Styles in the same way that you love your boyfriend. Although I’m sure some girls would disagree. I can’t offer you a concrete definition of love, but I would hazard a guess that you will have had to have met them in person.

So what is the definition of love? Type into Google and the first thing you get is “A strong feeling of affection” and the second is “A great interest and pleasure in something”. Whilst these are categorised as separate descriptions, they do go hand in hand and I think this is the easiest way to describe the different versions of love. Sometimes you think it would be easier if there were different terms for everything, but personally I don’t see the harm in using love to describe our affections for things other than people. As long as we understand the differences in our meanings and don’t read too much into it, then I’m sure there won’t be too much confusion.

But our obsession with love is not just refined to the different meanings, we do all love to take part in the latest gossiping sesh about how much such and such is totally in love with what’s her face. Whilst we can never know what someone else is really feeling, we can pick up on signs – stalking their Facebook, constantly bringing them up and asking about their whereabouts; it’s not surprising people jump to the conclusion that they’re in love. And then of course there’s the prominent question of “so do you love them, or are you in love with them?” Do we really need to go into this much detail about our love lives? As long as we’re content and know what’s going on, I think it’s best left alone. Meddling in people’s love lives doesn’t tend to have the best results. Just think Romeo and Juliet. Okay perhaps a tad dramatic.

Love is hard to define and it’s way harder to try and find out why we love things, but we do know the differences when we say it in various contexts. Just don’t waste it on Harry Styles!

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