Love is indeed a tale as old as time. It breaks down barriers, loneliness and at times even common sense. Some are afraid to love, some have loved and lost while yet others are waiting for love. This particular topic has many myths and legends written in its name. Many wars fought and many deaths to speak of.
This week’s FYI is about the facts and myths surrounding this very wild emotion. Love.

MYTH: True love has to be love at first sight.
FACT: Popular culture leads guys and girls to believe true love is only when two people meet each other for the first time and sparks fly endlessly. On the contrary, love is a beautiful feeling which can also make itself known over time. Long time friends suddenly falling in love is a classic example of why this myth is totally false.

MYTH: First love is the last: Love happens only once.
FACT: One of the biggest myths about love is that it happens only once. It is true that first loves are hard to forget. In fact, the memory of a first love is irreplaceable. However, this does not mean that people don’t fall in love again.

Very few people end up getting married to their first loves but those who don’t, still manage to fall in love with someone else. This should be a strong reminder for every guy and girl out there nursing a broken heart for the first time. Life is beautiful and fickle – heal your wounds with time and let love find you again.

MYTH: Romantic relationships can survive without sex.
FACT: Many relationship experts, columns and blogs separate the concept of romance and sex. While that may somehow be explained in theory, it is not generally the case in real life.

Physical intimacy is an integral aspect of romance to the extent that it builds a solid foundation in the long term. This is not your average love versus lust discussion, but an acknowledgement that physical intimacy is an expression of love and vice versa.

MYTH: Love is the same as jealousy or possessiveness.
FACT: A common myth that most guys and girls have is that falling in love makes people jealous and possessive. Make it clear to yourself that love is not the reason why boyfriends and girlfriends become jealous.

The feelings of jealousy and possessiveness arise out of protectiveness, suspicion, lack of trust and other factors that affect all relationships, including friendships. Romantic relationships are not the only ones that face these quirky feelings.

MYTH: True love can never be found online on dating websites.
FACT: Traditionalists like to convince others that true love can never be found online on dating websites and social networks. Their arguments may have had a point in the nineties when chat rooms were filled with weirdos.

Times have changed and so have perceptions about relationships. Social networks and dating websites may still have their share of weirdos and heartbreakers, but there are a lot of nice men and women out there looking for genuine relationships.

MYTH: Love makes you do crazy things.
FACT: The image of men and women saying that love makes people do crazy things may have become iconic in movies and TV shows, but it is far from the truth. Blaming love for mistakes made in a relationship is a weak thing to do.

For example, suppose a girl falls in love and decides to get her boyfriend’s name tattooed on her body. Their relationship breaks apart after six months. If she conveniently blames love for making her take the bad decision of getting his name tattooed, she is simply running away from her own mistake.

Like this example, people are responsible for their own decisions and mistakes. Love is not some kind of evil force that makes people do crazy things.

MYTH: Life is worthless without the love of a relationship.
FACT: Life is worthless without being in a relationship – this is a common perception of society as a whole. While it is valid on many levels, it should not make anyone feel sad about themselves when they are out of a relationship.

Falling in love isn’t the only purpose of your life. Love is a meaningful connection that is made only with those with whom you can connect on a deep level. It is not something that can happen with anyone and everyone.

If you don’t have a boyfriend, girlfriend, husband or wife at the moment, don’t feel sad for yourself. Instead, make your life worth living by pursuing your personal and career goals. For all you know, you will meet your true love while you are busy chasing your life’s destiny.

MYTH: Men don’t feel love as strongly as women.
FACT: It is grossly wrong to say that men don’t feel love as strongly as women, however, it may be right to say that men don’t express love in the same way that women do. There is a big difference between the two.

Whether it is about saying I Love You or stealing every possible moment to give each other cute hugs, it is a generally accepted notion that women are more vocal and proactive when it comes to expressing love. However, this should not be mistaken for a lack of love from the men’s corner.

Men like to show their love in different ways. For example, a husband’s love and commitment for his wife may show in how he takes the time to meticulously plan out their financial goals as a couple. A boyfriend’s love for his girlfriend may show in how he behaves in a protective way when he is around her.

MYTH: It is too late for true love.
FACT: Many men and women simply assume that just because they are past a certain age, true love will be impossible to find. This is a myth because true love is not perishable, it is not time bound and it can never have a use-by date.

True love is a magical connection that can happen to people in their teenage, twenties, thirties, forties and beyond. Even if you are a forty- five-year-old divorcee, never give up hope on love. It can come at the least expected time and place.

MYTH: All mistakes are forgiven in true love.
FACT: Don’t be under the impression that everything is forgiven in a relationship when there is true love. Regardless of how strong a bond you share with your partner, you are still responsible for your side of the deal.

This is the reason why relationships break up when a guy cheats on his girlfriend or when a woman does something that her man doesn’t like. This should be a stern reminder to people who have been taking their beautiful relationships for granted.