I’ve wanted to write you for weeks now, about a new lady in my heart. I don’t know her well yet. But for me, it was love at first sight (LAFS). Well, maybe not precisely first sight, but within a couple hours of it anyhow. Since meeting her, the flowers out back look prettier. The food on this diet tastes better. Heck, even the stench of the cat’s litter box is easier to ignore during cleaning. Plus, [Linda] has inspired me to write voluminously; she’s given me the voice I’ve sought. So many things make sense now that didn’t, prior to May 2nd, the day we met. and my energy level at the keyboard has exploded since, as a result. Being in love makes great things happen. Sometimes, I have to force myself to leave the computer, whereas before, I had to force myself to stay. Like you do when you’re in love, I count the hours since I last held her hand (which, by the way, is around 528), and I count down the hours until I’ll see her again (which is 308). I haven’t done that since the days with [First Love]. In so many ways, this wave of passoin feels just like the one I rode with [First Love] throughout the 70s and into the 80s. It’s blissful!
We’ve talked about LAFS before, you and I, and we’ve argued its pros and cons. Yet I still wonder why people so readily dismiss LAFS as meaningless infatuation. When I examine my past relationships, it appears that LAFS is the best indicator that the feelings of love will last a long time if not forever; which is contrary to popular belief, I know. Yet, that’s my experience. Indeed, the ladies I struggled most to forget after we broke up, were the ones that I fell in love with the most quickly. Indeed, the quicker I fell, the deeper I fell, and the more enjoyable the romance was. Of course, the loving hurt more as well, during those times of uncertainty that occur in any romance. With the highest of highs also comes the lowest of lows. So I suppose that where there’s great opportunity for pleasure, there’s also a great chance for pain. But I don’t mind that, because the good parts make whatever suffering that ensues, worth enduring.
People though, protect themselves from this pain by strengthening their emotional defenses against LAFS. LAFS is also vulnerability at first sight because it makes us weak to another; another whose intensions we know not. We become sensitive to the needs and opinions of someone we fancy immediately; feeling intense joy when they like us, and great sadness when they reject us. Since people fear being vulnerable to a stranger, and since LAFS greatly increases this vulnerability early in the mating dance, they dismiss LAFS as reckless, shallow, and impulsive abandon. To them, love that takes a long time to grow is a much safer love, even though it’s a less pleasurable love. They apply an easy-come-easy-go philosophy, suggesting that the longer that love takes to grow, the longer lasting it will be. They say that if love comes quickly, that it will go quickly as well. So they seek people who do not inspire LAFS, as a way of keeping control over the situation and thus, reducing the disappointment, should their “beloved” turn them away. This makes it easier to keep their guard up until they themselves decide that to lower it. But this is just so wrong. By protecting themselves from the pain, they’re also fending off the potential pleasures as well.
I dated many for whom there was no LAFS, and they were the easiest to get over as well. Just because we take lots of time to get to know someone before admitting to loving them, does not guarantee a deeper, more abiding love. In fact, I’ve seen the opposite. While the resulting friendships were nice, without LAFS, that’s really all they ever came to be; friendships. There was no spark, no electricity, no insatiable desire, no drive to write reams of love letters, no prettier looking flowers out back, no better tasting food, and the cat’s box remained impossible to clean without gagging. Without LAFS, there was no positive bias on life, no perpetual lift in the shoe, no rising sun above a bleak and lonely physical and emotional landscape, and no truly deep concern about making her day a little better. It seems then that when I love quick, I also love deep, and I love long as well. But when I love slow, I never come to love at all.
Yet women see it differently. They see a guy who wants them right away as just being about sex, or as having some hidden agenda. Or, the more benevolent ones simply doubt the fellow’s candor, believing that it’s highly unlikely that he could know so quickly that he wants them. Indeed, [Linda] was shocked to learn that I’m already smitten with her, after but one date. But it happens. It has happened, and to me, LAFS is as real as romantic love ever gets. So how do I convince her that it’s real? How do I show her that the realest love is in fact, the fastest love?
There’s a great book on this topic: Love at First Sight, by Earl Naumann Ph. D., that describes studies that validate LAFS. The 1500 people he studied who experienced LAFS, generally had longer-lasting, happier relationships, than those who took the lets-just-be-friends-first approach to dating.
I suppose that every man is different. But for me, women should know that if I’m crazy about them on the first date, that I’ll probably stay that way indefinitely. It’s in my history. A quick fall is a deep fall for me, and the longer I’ll stay in love as well. So LAFS can be just as meaningful and enduring as the more slowly evolving friendship-derived love that so many these days idolize. LAFS makes it easier to tolerate the beloved’s “imperfections” and idiosyncrasies, and it makes the couple way less likely to fight or grow bored with each other. No, I’d rather have a true love that I quickly fell for, than a friend that I decided to love after months of consideration. True love is better and the truest love of all, happens the most quickly. That’s in my humble opinion, sir.