Does love at first sight truly exist?

What you need to know:

At the right time and with the right person, it is possible

I have only ever felt love at first sight with food or other material objects such as cars, houses, interior décor, clothes, shoes and the like. And as such, I have never related to conversations where people talk about falling for someone they have just met.

For the longest time I told myself it was a thing of the movies because I was way too much of a cynic to believe otherwise. In my mid-late 20s I just boiled it down to I clearly live in the wrong place because the sensation eludes me (to an extent this is still true for me).

I also often wondered is it lust and infatuation that people experience and misconstrue for love at first sight? As a concept it has never made much sense to me.

Many of my peers seem to feel otherwise, I have talked to people who have at least fallen in love with someone at first meeting. Some went on to flourish into relationships and while others never made it past the feeling of being in love.

Because love has taken different shapes and forms in the recent years, my thinking has shifted a bit. I have not tried to demystify it but I have thought often that maybe when you are in the right place at the right time and with the right person it is possible to fall in love immediately.

But the cynic in me is still very much alive. Often, I wonder what are you falling in love with? Do you even know the person? Are the feelings you have in that moment enough to embark on a relationship as well as carry and sustain it?

I have always maintained that if someone that has known me romantically for less than six months said they were in love with me, it would be a red flag. Because what exactly are you in love with and why?

Coming into adulthood, more will change your understanding and somewhat shift whatever stance you might have. Today, I may welcome the sentiment from someone (probably would not say it back as soon still) but deep down in me the thought would still remain, why so soon? What gives?

In a world where dating often requires a lot of work, that comes with disappointment, rejection, and uncertainty, falling in love at first sight has strong appeal. Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was some big sign on someone’s forehead saying ‘this is the one’ so that you could stop all searching and engaging in the tiresome dating process.

In that regard, I really do get and see its appeal.

Prince Harry said it about Meghan Markle saying he knew she was the one for him the “very first time we met”. And while they have managed to make it work for better or worse, I have always wondered, did it really happen that way or was he just spitting some lines for us to buy into the fairytale.

There is a need for scientists to empirically study ‘Love at First Sight’ and all the might it comes with. For us to fully believe that this is something that happens and is possible for any ordinary human being, we need supporting evidence so that cynics like myself will buy into the fairytale too.


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