1. You watch a Nicholas Sparks movie like The Notebook and you are simultaneously crying, rolling your eyes, wishing for that kind of love to happen, but also thinking that kind of love just never does happen and is so unrealistic. Your feelings based off of one romantic movie are conflicting, to say the least.
2. For Valentine’s Day, you’re hoping to receive this intense show of affection, while also decrying that the holiday was created by Hallmark in order to sell more greeting cards, but damn it, if you still don’t secretly want that bouquet of roses.
3. If someone asks you out on a date and you think it could actually lead to something real, you’re all cool on the outside to your friends like, “Yeah, we’ll see, I mean, it’s just a first date!” But inside, you’re all, omgomgomgomg this person is very sexy and interesting!
4. Any television show in which there is a plot line involving two characters who might fall in love is a show you will obsessively watch just to see them fall in love because awwwwww. (But then you secretly loathe yourself for caring about them falling in love in the first place.)
5. If you do have a significant other, you’ll be the most affectionate, grossly adorable couple in private. I love you’s will be flung around every moment of every day and, while you completely love it and it’s the exact relationship you’ve craved, you secretly are a bit nauseated by just how lovey dovey you two are.
6. You are most likely exceedingly logical and rational about your love life which is just a way to tamper down the love that you feel all the time always forever, so much love!
7. You honestly have so much love to give that it kind of worries you. You’re such an emotional softy when it comes to all things love, but hardly ever show that side of yourself, because feelings! Because scary!
8. When you like someone, it takes all your energy to not want to talk to them all the time, text them all the great things you think about them, and compliment them excessively. You generally just want to shower them with your feelings until they are smothered in love.
9. …However, you never do this or, at least, dole out these compliments sparingly, out of fear that you will come on way too strong, but like, you just love the idea of love and want to spread it all around…
10. …But also, if they reciprocate the feelings, you start to get so terrified that you overthink everything, even things that are not worth overthinking, and proceed to sabotage any chance of a future, because love is scary to you, even though love is also amazing to you. You really can’t win here.
11. I mean, you’re going to cry your eyes out at a wedding, while also truly believing you’ll never get married yourself, because commitment and because how does anyone actually fall in love without running frightened for the nearest bar?
12. You probably have a secret Pinterest board full of quotes about love. Emphasis on SECRET.
13. When a notable celebrity couple breaks up, you are both sad for the state of their love and also like, “Well, yeah, because love is hard!” (And then kick yourself for being kind of jaded when all you really want is to just be surrounded by love all the time forever and ever.)
14. When you’re alone, you are not above writing some sappy poetry about the one that got away or that unrequited crush, because nothing defrosts your ice cold heart like a night at home alone with nothing but your hopelessly romantic thoughts. (And wine, for later, because… too vulnerable.)
15. You have a history of going for unavailable people, because it gives you the impression of putting yourself out there, but you subconsciously know that it will never transpire between you two. It’s the safest way for you to crush hopelessly on someone that you know you have no future with, because that’s so much fun to do! (Not.)
16. You are so in love with the idea of love that you could develop feelings for almost anyone. But there’s probably two people you’ve ever considered falling in love with, never mind the one (or zero!) people you’ve actually said the words “I love you” to.
17. Modern dating is, on the one hand, for someone terrified of love, wonderful because it’s mostly impersonal and you can keep a close distance from anyone you’re interested in. On the other hand, the hopeless romantic part of you is like, where is the romance! You want to give and receive all the romantic parts of love, but feel like you should probably stop wanting that because the modern dating landscape is bleak in the romance department.
18. People say you are picky or non-committal or have too high of expectations, but maybe you just believe in a love you haven’t found yet. Part of you believes that it’s not time for you yet (the hopeless romantic part). But, the other part of you (that terrified of love part) worries your fear of falling in love is repelling love from you. Nobody knows your struggle.
19. But then, you do fall in love and it’s all the things you thought it would be, but much more. It’s as difficult and heartbreaking as they say it is. But, it’s also powerful and intimate in all the ways they say it is, too. And, you find yourself vacillating between hopelessly being in love with this person, while also being terrified of the love you feel. And, it’s hard, but it’s worth it. And, you finally get it, you get why people fall, why people are crazy for love and you realize that your unique struggle of being hopeless and also terrified was pretty much directly on point, because that’s what love is to you. It’s beautiful and scary. It brings out all your nastiness and darkness, but also all your compassion and light. So, you find yourself prepared for what love has to throw at you and suddenly, you are happy for the struggle, because it made you strong and ready for a big love. (Awwwwww.)