The end of romance?

I love you!

They're all saying it these days --
in schools and colleges,
in parks and restaurants,
at workplaces and in bedrooms,
over the phone and through the e-mail.

They first say it as a declaration,
then as an assurance.

Even people who normally don't converse in English,
when it comes to expressing this primary emotion,
prefer 'I love you' to its vernacular equivalent.
Just as the way it happens in the movies:
the hero or the heroine will flirt in the regional language,
but the flirtation usually culminates
with the mouthing of the inevitable
'I love you.'

But when people say
'I love you' to each other,

what exactly do they mean?

That they want to get married?

That they find each other irresistible?

Or is it an ex-pression of affection or admiration?

Or an unstated agreement to have sex?

No one knows.

The answer is bound to be as
complicated as the definition of love.

But one thing is certain.

Ten years ago, when you said 'I love you',
no matter what you meant by that,
it was taken not only as a declaration
of love but also of commitment.

It was sacred as a vow.
And you usually said it only once in your lifetime --
to the person who eventually became your spouse.
And the pleasure of saying it was similar
to using a smuggled French perfume.

Today, you can get the same perfume
in the neighbourhood departmental store.
Similarly, 'I love you' is now a free commodity.

" Today,
'I love you' no longer means
you are the only one I love.
It is only an ex-pression of feeling,"
says psychiatrist

"People are in a great hurry to fall in love.
Having an affair has become a status symbol,
especially on campuses.''

So today, people are falling in love
more often than ever before.
And not just with one person.
Today you might be in love with someone,
but you are free to walk out if the relationship is
stifling and fall in love with someone else.
Unlike the days of the past
when only death could do you apart.

Does that mean the present generation
is less sincere when it says 'I love you'?
I don't think so.
"They no longer say it to express a commitment.
I believe they mean it when they say it,"

Perhaps, with culture and tradition,
relationships have become flexible too.

Take the case of my friend journalist
who relocated in metro a year ago.
Friendless in a new city,
he took to the Internet chatrooms.

There he met Girl, 18, a student of College.
They fell in love even before they met;
and when they met,
a passionate affair began.
But in less than six months,
she was gone, after having
declared her love a million times.

"I think she grew out of the relationship.
But when she used to tell me 'I love you',
I could see she meant every bit of it,"
says my friend journalist,
who nursed a broken heart for a
while before moving on -- to other women, of course.

Today, both speak on the phone occasionally,
like "good friends."
Sounds like a filmi divorce story!

But that's how it happens these days,
except in films where the girl and
the boy fall in love and live happily ever after.

"Rarely do we see a love affair culminating in marriage.
Often we find that the victim of an
unsuccessful affair soon gets into another one,''

I view this casual attitude of today's youth as a dangerous trend.

"When one runs from one relationship to another,
it becomes a character trait,
Only to be continued in future,''

So where does this leave love?

My another friend said,

''The word love means nothing to me at the moment,"
"But I know when I meet my knight in shining armour,
Then it will have a lot of significance.
At this point in time, if someone said it to me,
I would not believe him."

Why not?

The answer is simple --

'I love you' is no longer the smuggled French perfume.
Say it to any woman today and
She’s unlikely to be impressed
Instead, she's likely to turn back and ask:
"How many people you have said this to before?"

In any case,
no one falls in love with a
Tom, Dick or Harry these days
-- something that still happens in movies,
where a autorickshaw driver wins
the heart of a millionaire's daughter.

In real life,
it's among equals (something that
the strict father of the erring heroine
is looking for when pushing her
into a room and locking her up).

We see this as a natural phenomenon.
"By and large, we are drawn to people
Who are compatible,
Who we can relate to.
That's the in-built safety mechanism love has.
Unless it is an act of rebellion,"

So you fall in love with and marry
someone compatible.

After that what?

"As long as you are in love minus the responsibilities,
you are crazy about it.
Once married, the colours start fading.
where is the time
for romance after you have a child?"

One women who, 17 years ago,
fought with her parents
and threatened them with dire consequences
if they objected to her marrying the man of her choice.
"Now when I think of all those things,
it seems so crazy,'' she says.

Is it really worth falling in love?
For that, we have to first define love.
And that's not as easy as saying,
I love you.


Bibaswan said...

well written...i agree with u completely when u say that relationships have become more flexible now and people are more intent on "trying" things out rather than just dropping anchor..... maybe it's bcoz' that we have become so used to 'change' that it has become just too difficult to stay 'put' in a single state....cell phones, cars, apartments....everything needs to be changed or we find ourselves left behind....similarly maybe we need to move on or our desires will race ahead.....
twenty years was not about was just about holding on hard to what one it's different.....and it's bad....change is easy to associate with everything but it should never be associated with a u should have always
been "till death do us apart" but when there is a green signal from either side....that is
when both sexes have adapted (and adapted well!!!!) the wheels will continue to roll....
after takes two hands to clap.... the coming years..."I love you" will be further relegated and one day a pretty girl will leave "I love you" as comment here to a similarly well written post as a token of appreciation for ur effort...u never know dude!!!

Bappa said...

Hmmmm......Good 1................but I guess u r not really in touch wid bollywood.................Our film industry has undergone a radical change nd our films r no longer just abt "fallin" in luv wid ne Tom, Dick or Harry...............well dis is my definition of luv.........."Love inspires u nd nvr makes u perspire"...................Luv motivates u 2 reach gr8 heights............Its tru dat da youth of 2day keep gettin in nd out of relationships.......but all dose relationships r not necessarily based upon da basic feelin of Platonic love.........Such frequent relationships may b based upon feelings of Crush, Infatuation nd Lust also..........all dese emotions may culminate in2 luv at a later stage but dey r not necessarily based upon tru platonic love............Da word "Love" has not lost its essence..........its nly dat ppl r misusing it..............can b considered 2 b a simple case of Malapropism.........its a result of bad English teachers at schools nd colleges nd 2 much bad literature dat is readily available in da market..........Luv was, is nd shall always b da purest of human emotions!

arijit said...

well both of u hv sed completely diff stuff bt both aint wrong...
food fr thought...

Anonymous said...

all of this is fyn but its pretty strange cuming from sum1 who claims he hasnt ever fallen in gorai.....u r only 17 years old.........most of us readingthis blog are.........i dnt think u hav the know;edge or understanding or the experience to express your views regarding a topic like this..........

what u speak of is the multitude.
love is exceptional
so dear friend.......keep an eye out for the exceptions.......THAT is what real love is.

arijit said...

ya ya neel..we will hear this from u a couple of years or so later dear...u gather all ur experiences by that that u can share them with us.. till then we try n find out exceptions...btw my eyes are always open..exception or not..

angeleyes said...

i dont know about marriage but i feel what u hav written about youth 2day taking love 2 casually is very true. its not a statement of commitment nmore. its merely an expression 2 convey ur feelings at that point. i feel youth 2day misunderstands love. "love" is as pure as it always were but we confuse it with lust 2day which is a more prevalent feeling..........

arijit said...

exactly!!! thats the whole point...nt only lust bt also silly matters like status n ego problems...all these stuffs r tarnishin "love"..

Dream Baron said...

Sum tyms i wonder how gorai spits out the bitter truth without blinking...

arijit said...

ha ha..well said...i am always fr the hesitations

kenneth said...

well really well written!!! quite understand what u mean!! actually was thinking about how the word "love" has been inculcated into regional languages today!!! came across its usage in the Express bus today!!! weird indeed that i read this today too :P

arijit said...

ha ha ha..lovely co incidence...
neways thanks fr the compliments..