The word “love” has to rank somewhere at the top of the most overworked words currently in use. We throw it around now like confetti at a New Year’s Eve party. Oh, I *love* that dress you’re wearing! Kiss. Kiss. Don’t you just *love* that new hair color? Oh yes! And did you see that new guy who just moved in next door…He’s so dreamy…I’m in *love*. Sigh.
But what do we mean exactly? Like. Idolize. Enjoy. Appreciate. Revere. Have some affection for, am infatuated with, but will definitely not die for. Because just as we do at the end of a New Year’s Eve affair with all the party favors we have no more use for, we forget the word even dripped from our tongues like honey, tossing it aside with scant attention to the fact that the receiver may have taken what was said to mean more than was intended.
Can we resolve, therefore, as we go forward into a new year to be more careful with its use? Words matter. People’s hearts matter. And it’s not okay to tell someone you love them because it is expedient to get what you want. It’s opportunistic and it’s cruel. Indeed, the person to whom you say, “I love you” may be crazy enough to believe you. Just imagine that obscenity. squint emoticon
2015 © Donna Kassin, The Real Proposal magazine. All rights reserved.
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