The adolescence is the stage of life in which our ability to feel romantic love appears. Adolescents, or at least the vast majority of them, begin to experience this feeling when they reach that age. Almost everyone remembers our first teenage love. And we almost always remember it because feeling that emotion for the first time leaves an indelible mark on human beings.
What is love?
Love is one of human emotions. But it is very likely that it is the strongest of them all. When we talk about love, we usually refer to romantic love although there are other types of love:
Filial love. It is the love between children and parents.
Fraternal love. It is the love between brothers although very often it is very similar to the love that is felt by some friends.
Friendship. It is deep love for friends.
Romantic love. It is love towards the couple.
What defines romantic love?
Romantic love is precisely what we discovered in adolescence. It is also frequent that the feeling of friendship appears at this stage of life. But what we all remember from our teenage years is often the discovery of romantic love. And this type of love is defined by some characteristics:
- Sexual attraction is often the first manifestation of romantic love, although this is not always the case. But it is common for young people to begin to experience a physical attraction – I desire to be with that person – and almost always also a sexual attraction – I want to touch, kiss and have sex with that person – when they experience romantic love. That emotion that is usually very new to teenagers is one that causes them more embarrassment, lack of confidence and nervousness. Usually with the passage of time when they have experienced it more and when they know it better, those negative sensations linked to desire usually disappear. Adolescence is also the time of the appearance of the first sexual relations, of the discovery of one’s own sexual orientation and when boys and girls seek answers to their doubts about sex.
- Intimacy or attachment it is the connection that develops towards the person who is the object of romantic love. Generally the existence of romantic love between two people also causes the appearance of a type of relationship with a much greater degree of intimacy than with the rest. With the other person you share thoughts and feelings that are not shared with anyone else.
It is also common that when you feel romantic love for another person, desire for commitment appears, for that love to continue forever. But reality tells us that many times it is not like that.
In a few cases, first love lasts forever. And we meet couples who have been together since they met in high school. But normally it is not so. The main reason for this fact is that in adolescence boys and girls are not fully formed. When they grow they change, they mature and they also change what they want for their life. Logically one of the things that change is also the characteristics that they want in their partner.
That is why it is also very common for teenagers to change often as a couple. But that does not mean that they do not suffer with the ruptures. There are times when the adults around them downplay those breaks. It is good to let them see that this pain that at the moment seems to be eternal, will pass away. But it is also necessary for adults to remember how deep that pain was.
Love throughout adolescence
Precisely the fact that adolescence is a transit stage makes the way in which adolescents live romantic love change as they advance in that age.
- First adolescence when romantic love begins to appear, most boys and girls experience it as a way to fit better in a group. Having a relationship with someone is, generally, the formula that girls and boys use to be part of their group of friends.
- End of adolescence. On the contrary, as the years go by, romantic love is the way to find a partner for life.