This Is What People Do When They Don’t Really Love You

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It was love, love, love alone!
Caused King Edward to leave his throne!”

–Harry Belafonte

Love is a strange thing; it is one of those things that eludes definition and defies it again and again. It still forms an essential part of not only human existence, but also the very experience of being human.

Humanity survived because it could love in a certain way that other animals couldn’t. I mean think about it; human babies are probably the weakest in the animal kingdom, totally dependent; human beings don’t possess claws or particularly sharp teeth either.

It was this love, this bond between two human beings that made survival possible.

There is this beautiful little snippet of conversation between Cooper (played by Matthew McConaughey) and Amelia Brand (Anne Hathaway) in the 2014 Christopher Nolan film, Interstellar which seems quite appropriate here:

Cooper: You’re a scientist, Brand.

Brand: So listen to me when I say that love isn’t something that we invented. It’s… observable, powerful. It has to mean something.

Cooper: Love has meaning, yes. Social utility, social bonding, child rearing…

Brand: We love people who have died. Where’s the social utility in that?

Cooper: None.

Brand: Maybe it means something more – something we can’t yet understand. Maybe it’s some evidence, some artefact of a higher dimension that we can’t consciously perceive. I’m drawn across the universe to someone I haven’t seen in a decade, who I know is probably dead. Love is the one thing we’re capable of perceiving that transcends dimensions of time and space.

Coming back on track however, we will keep our conversation here strictly about romantic love and the consequences of it wearing off between two individuals.

In life, when someone truly loves you, when the romantic interaction is not one-sided, they will invariably find a way to be with you.

Love does not require much thinking; if it does, it’s probably not there, has never been. And if it is indeed there, you will just know it; in the twinkle of their eye, in the smile that lights up their face when they see you and most importantly, in the fact that they make time.

They make time, defying busy schedules and busy lives in general, to be with you. To make you understand that you mean a lot to them.

Yes, there are exceptions, but there is also something absolutely inexplicable in the very attitude of people who truly can’t find time despite their love for you.

On the flipside of the same coin, someone might be spending their entire day with you and still not really love you.

The point here is acceptance; acceptance of the fact that we are denied the love we expect sometimes; that despite almost worshipping someone, we just aren’t loved back.

But even if that happens, what is important here is that it’s not a waste of time. Love, even if it’s one-sided, is never a waste of time.

Empirically speaking, every experience is a learning one; and love being the essence of being human as it is, is definitely not an exception.

Hope is what love gives us. We learn that some journeys are best not taken and some stories best not written.

And in extension, that there are greener pastures to be seen and newer melodies to be lived.

Try to take heart in the momentary loneliness; the universe is never as unkind as it seems right now.

If you are trying to hold on to love that is not even there, it is on you and you alone. Try not to do that.

If they don’t feel it, let them be; more importantly, let yourself be. Love doesn’t die; it’s the people, the circumstances and the situations that change. And those things aren’t your fault.

Once you release yourself from the prison of self-pity, self-hate and self-blaming, you will see that this too shall pass.

There is no one true love for people; that’s fiction.

Each love helps us grow and even when it ends, it leaves us with lessons; lessons that help us grow.

Whatever happens, don’t stop loving, because it is love itself that makes us human and gives us possibilities to live by at the end of the day.

Like the Japanese have eloquently put:

“Fall down seven times, rise up eight.”

No matter what the pitfalls, don’t stop living and don’t stop loving.


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