Yesterday I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in awhile. As we did our quick five-minute catch-up, I asked her how her ex was doing. She just gave me that well rehearsed polite response, “Actually we aren’t together anymore, so I am not entirely sure”, then the immediate look of sadness that I always get from a girl who just recently broke up with someone. I’m well used to that look, I guess that’s what happens when that someone you thought you were going to marry breaks up with you. But after giving me “the look,” I told her that I know she’ll find someone new and she will love him just as much, if not more.
My words, meant to make her feel better about being single, really got me thinking. Should I be asking her to fall in love again?
You know those times when you just got your heart broken, and you’re thinking, “I should’ve known, I really should’ve known”? Well, I say, yes, you really should have, but there’s nothing you can do about it now, except take a little time off wallowing and then get your ass off that couch and your guard back up.
So I’ve decided to help by preparing a list of situations in which falling in love would only result in heartbreak, to help you avoid repeating the same mistake.
This is the kind of love story that has graced both the big screen and the small screen many, many times and it had fooled a great many of us into thinking that we, too, could fall in love with a one-night stand. But it’s different here in the real world. Just because you lost your heart when you stumbled back to their place that night, that does not mean they did too. They probably know the difference between a physical and an emotional connection and it’s about time you learn a thing or two on the matter too. Or you’ll end up alone. And heartbroken. And miserable.
2. Don’t fall in love when there is a deadline
He’s moving to another state in a year. Or she’s starting a whole new life at the end of the summer. For whatever reason, your time with them has a deadline. Deadlines are called that for a reason; it’s the end of the road. You don’t speed up on a dead-end street do you? So why would you fall in love in a dead end relationship? Because you know you’d just end up alone. And heartbroken. And miserable.
3. Don’t fall in love when there is 20 million miles between the two of you
Long distance relationships take a lot of effort and it puts you through a lot of emotional struggle. One of those days, you’ll wonder if any of this is worth it. When you start wondering this, you won’t be able to help thinking if the other party is wondering the same thing. Tension builds up until, BOOM, it’s over. And you’re left alone. And heartbroken. And miserable.
4. Don’t fall in love with long, wonderful conversations
We get it: nobody can possibly have the kind of connection you have. It transcends normal human interaction and stretches deep into your soul. It’s special, out-of-this world, it’s exceptional. Here’s a news flash for you: that’s what everyone in love thinks. Falling in love on such a deep and personal level is the best feeling in the world, but this also invites the worst kind of heartbreak. And loneliness. And misery.
5. Don’t fall in love “despite what they say”
Now, people will always have a lot of stupid reasons why you should not be with the person you love. Maybe it’s the difference in background. Maybe it’s the difference in attractiveness. Maybe it’s the difference in capabilities. These people are ridiculous and you should ignore them. But when all your family and friends start disapproving, there is definitely something wrong. They’re always going to be looking out for you. If every single one of them has expressed some form of disapproval, then you either need to reassess the kinds of friends you have made or drop your lover fast, before they do it and leave you alone, heartbroken and miserable.
6. Don’t fall in love when the red flags are up and waving
You’ll want to ignore it, because you’re already starting to enjoy yourself. Maybe it’s her political views, maybe it’s his misogyny, or maybe it’s their cleanliness (or lack thereof). The voice at the back of your head is telling you that it is a red flag, but your heart, that damned thing, is telling you that you can overcome it. Here’s what’s going to happen if you pursue this, you’ll be able to ignore it the first few days, months, maybe even years if you’re a saint. But eventually, this will eat you up slowly until it gets between the two of you. Then they will leave. And you’ll be heartbroken, and alone, and miserable.
7. Don’t fall in love when they never will
On a related note, don’t fall in love with a person with commitment issues. Now don’t give me the “I didn’t know they weren’t the commitment type” excuses. You knew. You knew. You think you can change them? Not a chance. You cannot fix a person. You cannot change a person. They will do what they want and they will leave you alone. And heartbroken. And miserable.
8. Don’t fall in love the second time around
Fall in love once, to feel that enchanting kind of happiness that only love can bring. To feel loved, to feel special. To feel like you own the world, because you have them and nothing else matters. But one heartbreak is enough. Putting yourself through another is just silly. Nobody wants to feel heartbroken and alone and miserable a second time.
But forget about all of that.
Forget about the reasons why you should not fall in love.
Forget about when you should not fall in love. Forget about not falling in love. Because when it comes down to it, your heart is going to do whatever it wants. That’s the magic of love, it makes even the most intelligent people drop all logic and common sense. So you might as well sit back and enjoy the ride. Forget about the statistics telling you that there is a 98% chance you’ll crash.
Fall in love because you will anyway. Fall in love deeply. Fall in love intensely. Fall in love unapologetically. Fall in love in spite of it all, because who knows? Maybe you are the exception after all.