It’s 2015 in London: we have apps that can bring us sex, cameras that can fly, next-day home delivery and a Prime Minister so slimy he’s shiny.
Seriously, Cameron looks more buffed than a Savile Row shoe.
But have all these advancements, all these challenges of the modern millennial, made us so cynical that we’ve given up on the idea of love?
I was doing a culture-fit interview for a new member of our team at work, and hailing from Italy, she spoke about a celebrity Italian couple she’d loved as a child. Comedians who performed together, they were so much in love they died only 1 month apart.
It struck me like a bolt from the blue. Perhaps it was exaggerated (they were actors after all) but it made me re-evaluate my idea of love. And when we find it, what is it?
Is it a friend?
So often we put extra tags on what we need. We need them to be rich or beautiful or something else. But love; pure, unadulterated, all-consuming feeling for another person, what happens when we find that?
Moreover, how do we know when we’ve found it? And does it even exist?
From my experience, love is not the rainbows and unicorns which Disney pretend’s it to be (frankly, that company has got a lot to answer for). It’s complicated. It’s work. It takes time and patience and compromise. Sometimes, in my most cynical moments, I think I should just find someone I like who is very, very rich, older and business savvy, that we can work together into becoming a London power-couple. It’s an idea that has more than one appealing aspect.
But this woman’s story made me stop.
Does a love so strong, so deep, really exist?
When you bring modern technology into it: selfies, apps, online dating and instant messaging, it suddenly seems like a whole lot of hurdles between us and a healthy relationship. If love comes in, does it all just steamroller that aside?
By the end with Chris I was on tenderhooks. Every message, every call, every step meant something or didn’t.
It seems unimaginable that either of that couple, who couldn’t bear to be apart at the end, ever sat around and fretted over a date cancellation or a missed call.
When true love comes in, does nothing else matter?
We’re told that the course of true love never runs smooth,but it seems to be that real love, that once-in-a-lifetime person who loves us back, it seems that that kind of love should sooth things out, not throw things in our way like some sort of obscene assault course with a prize at the end. And what is that prize? A wedding? A Happy ever after? Access to his bank account?
Relationships are so often treated as win/lose. We flaunt them with our magic cameras and our social media networks in order to mock those who aren’t in one. We justify it by rubbing it into the faces of those who will become miserable at the sight of it. So often I see people shamefully bigging themselves in comparison with others; they know a Valentine’s Instagram or a Facebook album of the “so in love” will make some of their followers feel small when they see it, but they do it anyway. And I’m sure some of those relationships do stand the test of time, not everyone gets the fairy-tale love affair, however many emoji hearts they put on an update.
But it makes me question: do you settle for any of the above, or do you wait for that one person who you couldn’t possibly live without, and accept that they might never come along?