The other day, I grabbed my long-time friend’s face, looked him straight in the eyes and said — for the first time ever — how I really felt about him. I said, “I love you. You’re one of the most wonderful people I’ve ever met.” This was not a confession of romantic love whatsoever, but rather a friend telling another friend just how appreciative they are to have that person in their life.
I’d never done something like that before. I’d never randomly grabbed my friend’s face and said just how much I needed and loved them, but I loved doing it because it was honest and real and you never know when you won’t get the chance again to say something like that to someone special in your life.
We’re all so afraid to tell people we love them. We’re so frightened and nervous to show our true dependency and admiration towards the people we care about. We think it makes us look weak. We think it’s a socially abnormal thing to do and unfortunately it kind of is. But how bloody strange and backwards is it that confessing our love to someone is socially bizarre yet posting 10 selfies a day isn’t?
Let’s collectively band together and change this. Hell, let’s change it right now. Let’s all go tell the people we love that we can’t live without them. Seriously lets tell everyone we love just that. Let’s say, “I love you.” Let’s look them right in the eyes when we do it. Let’s say it unapologetically, without hesitation or inhibition. Let’s say it loud and fiercely. Let’s tell it to everyone we can.
Let’s say it to people who wouldn’t expect to hear it. Let’s say it to people who are more than deserving of hearing it. Let’s say it to people we’ve said it to before. Let’s say it to people we’ve never thought of saying it to before. Let’s say it a bit too early, maybe even for some a bit too late. Whatever the case; let’s say it. Let’s say it right to their face.
I’m so sick of it being socially inappropriate to show and tell people you love them in public. I’m sick of people rolling their eyes at couples kissing while waiting for the bus or at drunk girl friends sloppily chatting about how happy and in love they are with each other. I’m so sick of people being embarrassed of 2 am ‘I love you’ or ‘I miss you’ texts. I am so sick of people analyzing public display of affection like they are these socially regulated activities. My one friend told me a list of arbitrary rules she has for PDA and one was “thou shall not kiss your boyfriend in public while children are around.” What does that even mean? Be careful to show children how in love you are with your significant other. Don’t do it or else. That’s the silliest thing I’ve ever heard.
Kiss your boyfriend or girlfriend passionately in front of anyone, in front of no one; kiss them anywhere, anyplace, anytime. Do it again. Do it whenever the hell you want to because it’s beautiful and possibly not forever that you can just kiss someone without asking permission.
Love is absolutely not a thing to be kept secret and it sucks that we’ve been programmed to be ashamed of our emotions for approximately 360 days a year, which excludes the four or so days corporate America encourages us to tell people we love them through a card we paid 10 dollars for that already says it all for us. This is so explicitly wrong.
So let’s go out there today and do it. Let’s disregard our fears of being clingy, needy or desperate. If you love someone, they have every right to hear it. Don’t ask their permission to say it. Don’t ask for a reciprocal confession. Just tell them how you feel. Whether it’s an eyes closed, hand in hand, top of your lunges unexpected “I LOVE YOU,” or a quick familiar “love you” to your mom before you hang up that phone call. Do it. I beg of you.
We’ve all got to stop being so goddamn scared of expressing ourselves. We’ve all got to quit being ashamed of our feelings. Most importantly, we’ve all got to start telling the people we love that we love them and we’ve got to do it right now, when we’ve still got the chance.