Netflix and Chill? Hulu and Commitment? Or just plain old self-love? There seems to be an unlawful amount of opinions that devour the scope of how we should live our lives.
For many of us on the verge of adulthood, we are immensely curious about the three universal factors that reside in our heads: love, relationships and happiness. While simultaneously working through the challenges we face day to day, we constantly ponder on the ultimatums of life that will soon affect the ways we are as people in the functioning world.
Love has been around for light years and everyday it gets defined in a new way. Senior, Uriel Hernandez, shared what love meant to him when asked to define it.
“Love to me means doing anything in your power to help a person be their happiest, healthiest and in the best state of mind,” Hernandez said.
Hernandez sums up that his perspective on love comes in the power of selflessness. Although this is his point-of-view presented, senior Yassir Rahman has a different light to what love is.
“Love is an everything-ship. You connect your mind, body and soul and put trust in a significant other with few to no worries of them betraying you,” Rahman said.
Yassir puts into view that love intertwines with a connection to every part of the person you are committing yourself to. Both Rahman and Hernandez shed different viewpoints on what they feel love is and neither is wrong because the one thing we can all agree on is love at hand, is a multitude of things.
Finding and searching for love are at the very ends of the contrasting scale. As young adults, what we want and what we need vary as different factors arise. Sophomore Fabril Desroches, senior Amisha Ali, and senior Alexandria Chiles all discuss their frame of mind on if love is something worth searching for.
Desroches communicated that he does not find himself searching for love, but finds himself “wanting interaction that involves the bases of ‘love.’”
It is evident that even though he does not set out looking for love, he is rather curious about what it has to offer.
Ali expressed that she used to find herself searching for love in everything she did, exceeding the topic of just relationships.
“For the majority of my teen years I’ve had it, or at least what I thought it was. I would allow my mood to be affected based on how much love I felt I was getting from a guy. I thought that that is what kept me going, made me complete, or just made me feel okay. But recently, in the past few months, I realized how important it was to find love in yourself, before others, which I used to think was not worth my time. Now, I understand how important that is and how vital it is for a healthy relationship,” Ali said.
She made it prominent that through her discovery of self love, she realized that the only important relationship is the one between her and herself.
Chiles conveyed that she finds herself searching for love because “you never know what people are going through. It could make someone feel so much better just by feeling loved.”
She indicated searching for love and the act of love is joy within itself which is why she feels it is worth searching for.
Through the concepts spoken about, we see every individual on a different plane of the divisions of love.
Frequently, we find ourselves at the odds against both love and happiness. Some believe that a relationship is the key to our happiness and we need it in order to feel the utmost content in life.
“Usually, yes. My significant other usually fills me up with a lot of happiness. My life is always a little bleak, it’s nothing great. My significant other, however, always finds ways to make me feel happy, to boost my spirits and make everything feel okay again. Sure, having friends around is great, but the company of such a special person beats everything,” senior Isaiah Narine said.
Narine shared that the power of love, especially with his partner, bought him a happiness that he could not fathom within himself.
Contrary to Narine, senior Sanoyah Persaud believes that happiness does not spring from a relationship because there are many more things to enjoy in life.
“A relationship is not the main source of happiness in life because there are other life pleasures. Achieving one of your career goals or one of your goals in general could bring you great happiness. Traveling the world can bring you happiness, trying new foods can bring you happiness. The list goes on,” she said.
She discussed how your own purposes and experiences in life can bring you a constant cheerfulness rather than another person filling that love for you.
While individuals like Isaiah and Sanoyah have common outlooks on having a relationship to be happy, former graduate Maurice Wilson has more of an in-depth insight.
“Most times it is, but it shouldn’t be. No one gets that though. Love runs out so your happiness depending on something that’s meant to die can’t be anything but bad for you,” he said.
He expressed that in most cases, a relationship ends up becoming the place where your happiness stems from but once it’s over so is that dependent source.
It is distinct that the way we see ourselves and where happiness comes from and the way we see others and how they serve to our happiness vary through the minds of each individual.
Since our context of love is intertwined with complexity and derives from what we stimulate, where love comes from also harvests from those components.
Junior Solimar Ortiz disagrees with the proclamation “you can’t love others if you don’t love yourself” which tells she believes that love is acquired from others.
Ortiz continued to reiterate her stance saying “Mothers and fathers across the world have internal problems that they hate, but they will love their children with everything in their heart. A lot of people go through depression and other mental illnesses, but will fully be able to love their family, partner, kids, or even pets with even more than they have.”
She acknowledged that just because love does not come from within ourselves and that self love does not suffice our needs fully, we are able to receive it from external sources.
Oppositely, senior Tiana Persaud conceived that love comes from within ourselves rather than from others.
“I believe love ultimately comes from within yourself. Others may show you love differently, whether it be pleasant or in a harsh manner, which can have a role on how one thinks love should be or how they should be loved. However each person is capable of loving in their own way. The same way how one’s happiness depends on their own selves is how loving is truly defined for each individual,” she said.
Persuad disclosed the effect that the love we give to ourselves is far greater than any other love we will receive from another individual.
Both Ortiz and Persuad maintain more of a direct position on the topic at hand while senior Gurjot Singh agrees to both perspectives.
“I think love can come from both but I think one is more imperative than the other in my opinion. Finding love from within yourself is the greatest feeling and joy one can find because it’s something that is endless and infinite, something that you have the power to create yourself for yourself. I firmly believe that if you can find and grasp love in your inner self then you can spread more love and be confident enough to form relationships with other people whether intimate or not,” he said.
Singh expressed that love can come from both sources but the one from yourself affects how you give and receive to others.
Whether love comes from within ourselves or from other people, we are aware that it exists and it embodies more than one circumstance.
We gather wisdom from each of our life events whether we realize it consciously or not. This is no different when it comes to learning and seeing love through our own eyes.
Senior Zion Mcfarlane specified the shift his perspective of love made through his progress of mind.
“My perspective on love changed a lot. I used to believe it was easy and when you have a breakup it’s just cause you weren’t mature enough. But through my personal experiences and the experiences of peers, I know that love is unexpected. You never know when feelings can be lost, or another person is brought into play or if something as simple as moving and long distance comes into play. There’s a lot of complexity that goes into love which makes finding that one person you can get through it together with that much better,” he said.
He told that through his and others experiences, his formulation of love grew from what it was previously. He now knows that love is meant to take you by surprise making it all the more special when found.
Nonetheless, not all individuals share the changed viewpoint Mcfarlane does. Alexandria Chiles shared how her view of love stayed the same.
“I always cherished the feeling of being in love. It brings warmth. Every person that has ever said “I love you” truly meant it and proved it. I’m so thankful for the people who have love for me,” she said.
She expressed that this is how she has always seen and known love to be hence her mentality already being molded.
In contrast to both outlooks, Maurice Wilson communicated the outlook he holds differing from the concrete idealistics.
“I never had a true perspective on love. I instead just wanted someone to show me that I was worth the love I always craved. There’s still no true understanding and there may never be,” he said.
Wilson essentially felt that the stance he possessed was one that could not be fathomed. Instead he just wanted someone to fulfill him in all the ways he needed to be.
Our perspective on love will forever alter from each other because of who we are as people and how we actualize it.
Every individual partakes in their own perspectives of relationships, love and happiness, which concludes that the only right way to do both is to do it in the ways we know best. We exchange love with both other people and ourselves meaning only we would know what feels right and what feels wrong. It is up to us to both construct and reconstruct our desired paths in our own ways through our life experiences and interactions.