Is Dr. Malcolm Brynin, a sociologist at the University of Essex, completely insane? He says: "It seems that the secret to long-term happiness in a relationship is to skip a first relationship."
Empasis ours, but still. Brynin continues: "In an ideal world, you would wake up already in your second relationship."
Brynin has edited a book called Changing Relationships, a collection of new research papers by Britain's leading sociologists. As part of his research, Brynin found that intense first loves come with a euphoria that becomes an unrealistic benchmark for all other relationships. "More adult partnerships will seem boring and a disappointment," he explains. In other words: When you first fall in love, restrain yourself and just walk away.
With all due respect, Dr. Brynin, I disagree! I'm no scientist, but: While your first love may haunt you, the things you learn and take with you into your next relationship are valuable. There may be an innocence in first love; a tender, romantic gauze that hangs over the experience, but usually, you've fallen in love before you really know who you are. Before you really know what you want! You change, your desires change, the world changes. And the things you want when you're 15 (or 12, or six!) are not the same things you want — or need — when you are 25 or 30. That said, I would never want to skip "puppy love" — the next-door neighbor I had a crush on when I was five, the kid with freckles from first grade, or my high school boyfriend I made out with by the lockers. Nothing but fond memories! I wouldn't want to skip any of those and "wake up" in an adult relationship. Maybe the doctor didn't find falling in love as much fun as I did?
Why We Can Never Recover From First Love [Guardian]
Why You SHOULD Forget Your First Love: The Memories 'Can Ruin All Your Future Relationships' [Daily Mail]
Puppy Love Should Be Avoided 'To Make Later Relationships Easier', Says Sociologist [Telegraph]