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Love at First Sight

The idea of “love at first sight” is a theme in countless rom-coms, romantic novels, and recounted love stories. We’ve all seen it before. Two people will catch each other’s eye at a party, with sultry eyes and a soft smile, they strike up a conversation, and the rest is history. Many believe people can form an immediate and lasting connection with a glance. But, in reality, love is a very complicated emotion. There are so many components that make up true love. Can you really fall in love with someone by looking at them? 

To be fair, you can learn a lot about someone from just observing them with your eyes. Their appearance is a prominent component, but how they hold themselves, how their facial expressions relay their emotions, and how they interact with others also contain much information about a person. Our eyes pick up a lot of cues that we process subconsciously. For example, you might be attracted to someone due to confidence in their stance or the softness of their gaze without explaining why you are drawn to them. In contrast, you may see someone who is objectively attractive, but their body language and facial expressions relay the message that they are unapproachable and unfriendly.  

It is possible to feel a pull of interest from looking at someone, but I would not classify that feeling as love. Not yet. That initial pull is simply “lust” at first sight.

Of course, it is possible for a “first sight” attraction to eventually turn into a love connection. But that can’t be achieved or felt with eye contact alone. I think that mistaking that surface-level desire for “love” kind of undermines everything that true love is. Love cannot be achieved by simply looking at someone because it requires a deep emotional connection that comes from direct communication, experiences, and exchanges.


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