It is in all the scientific research — the hot and heavy passion that begins a relationship is purely chemical. Our brains fire off signals that make us consumed with desire for our new beloved.
Until one day, about eighteen months into the relationship, it wears off.
Romantic love is replaced with a new kind of love that is supposedly more mature and enduring. It has the sexy (ha!) name of companion love or something.
Since I’ve been with my boyfriend I’ve read all the books about how to keep a relationship alive. The last thing I want to do is fuck up the only time in my life I’ve been consumed with love and loved back. They all warn that romance is an illusion that quickly wears off and unless there is commitment and friendship then it’s way too easy to go looking for the thrill of passion with someone else.
I’m not buying it. It’s a lie.
Romance — or hot heavy ‘can’t get enough of you’ sex — remains one of the most powerful experiences we have in our lifetime. When you’re drowning in ecstasy every night the Universe is full of magic; you look, feel and move differently in the world. It’s a flush in the cheeks, a sparkle in the eyes and a softness in your voice. People know when you’re in love.
You are not being deluded by some chemical malfunction when you fall in love — you’re seeing yourself as you truly are.
You are deeply accepted and understood.
You are filled up with an invisible presence.
You imagine you can do anything.
Life is open to possibilities.
You see ecstasy in the ordinary.
You are expanded beyond what you thought were your limitations.
This feeling is not meant to be a brief interlude that interrupts the mundane existence of life or an episode of enjoyable madness, it’s how real life is supposed to be.
It’s who you are when you surrender in love.
Don’t accept that romance will eventually slip from your fingers. Don’t believe that passion has a use by date.
Believe that love can grow and expand without leaving behind the hot fire of sexual desire.
And if the fire has gone out do all that you can to reignite it. The spark is still there ready to burst into flames.
The truth about romance is it can last for as long as you want it to. All it takes is for you to believe in it.
Go on … send a flirty text message, book in a babysitter, buy some flowers … do it now.
And never ever get into bed with your partner unless you’re naked — your body, your emotions, your spirit and your soul.
Being crazy in love is the way life’s meant to be.
18 thoughts on “The Truth about Romance”
Amen! I once had someone tell me I didn’t know what love really was, even though I had been in love twice at that point.
I believe the same is with folks who try to dilute love and passion into some chemical science. I’m willing to bet that if more people got hit hard enough with the passion train it would be more about art than science.
Thanks Matt. Yes — love is indeed an art.
Aaaahh, I love love love this post Katie. You have put into words everything I have been holding on to and believing about love, all the while fearing that it might not be true. Thank you for showing me that I was right to believe that passion and romance should be able to last indefinitely when you find that right person. I love everything you’ve said here, particularly that being crazy in love is the way life is supposed to be, and that all we need to do to access that love and make it last is to surrender to it. I’ve heard it said by some wise people that we often fear things in our lives becoming wonderful because we don’t want to suffer the pain of losing them, so in effect we shut ourselves off emotionally before it can ever get too good. I think we just need to step through that fear and embrace passion in every aspect of our lives – especially love – romantic or not.
Thank you for this incredible post – I am so, so happy for you that you have found this kind of love!
Thank you for your lovely reply Grace. I know you’ll find your own romance that will last for as long as you want it to. x
Thank you! xo
Romance and romantic love is so beautiful that it transcends all science. I agree with Matt, it is truly an art/an emotion/an energy and once you are hit with it you will never be the same.
My husband and I have been together for about 15 years now, married for 8. Holy smokes – the romance is still here, even though there have been rough days and pain and intense fighting that you would think would have chased it away. Ironic that those things have only made us stronger – and made the “shagging” better : )
Lovely post Katie!
You are so lucky Jess. It gives me hope that long time passion really does last. If I’m still shagging Duckfish 15 years from now I’ll be extremely happy (and perhaps a little tired).
Very cool and so true.
Thank you, Jade x
Describing the end of the limmerance phase of brain chemistry as “the end of romance” is really, really inaccurate and misleading – heartbreakingly so. What it actually means is that you start to notice that your partner is a separate human being, who has differing desires, priorities and needs from you. And whose habits can start to seem annoying rather than endearing. Upping the romance, in the sense of continued willingness to be vulnerable, is in fact the solution to this “problem”.
(In case it’s not clear, I’m not saying you are being inaccurate and misleading.)
I have a really healthy relationship with my husband. In part it’s because right away we started addressing issues that most couples don’t deal with for months or years into their relationship. The other part is that we want our relationship to work, so WE work at it. If the two of you want to keep the romance and passion alive, you’ll make it happen. Love shouldn’t be reactive; love should be active and proactive.
“Love shouldn’t be reactive; love should be active and proactive.”
Hell, yes, Suheiry!
It all sounds lovely and I’m happy for the people who find this ????
Beautifully written… truly lovely.
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