According to the U.S. News & World Report, approximately 95% of marriages in India are arranged and divorce there is essentially unheard of.
You would think that arranged marriages are less likely to last, but at least in India that is not the case.
If there’s anything we are to learn from this statistic, it seems that yes, you can really learn to love someone.
Part of this may be because a marriage founded on friendship has a stronger foundation than one founded on harried romance or passion.
I’m not saying you should force yourself to love someone, especially if there are other signs of unhappiness or even abuse.
However, it’s possible that you can learn to love someone by spending more time with them and having genuine intentions.
Sometimes, in relationships – at least romantic ones – we hesitate to let ourselves fall in love, or we back out too quickly because of surface-level judgments.
“He’s not _____ enough,” we tell ourselves. Fill in the blank with whatever the inadequacy may be…wealth, looks, humor, intelligence, etc. You get the idea.
This happens quite often. People meet a guy on a dating app, go out with him once, then never give him the time of day for a second or third date because they judge him too quickly.
Sometimes there’s more than meets the eye, and that “more” only becomes known as you spend time with and earnestly come to know someone.
You’ll never know for yourself if you can really learn to love someone unless you try.
Keep reading for ways you can get to know someone well enough to maybe even love them.
You can’t learn more about someone if you don’t ask about who they are and where they’ve come from. Ask good questions and ask them often.
When you spend time together, don’t just go straight to watching a movie and sitting in silence together.
Instead, get to know each other. Go on dates and do things that allow you to talk with one another.
Think about the good friends in your life, the ones who you cherish and love the most. How did they become those good friends? By sitting in silence? We doubt it!
Good friends become our best friends because we can talk to them about anything. So ask good questions.
And give good answers. The more you learn about each other, the easier it is to feel love for one another.
It’s easy to love someone if you know who they are and where they come from.
Along with asking good questions about each other, you can also learn about their life story.
This may mean traveling to each other’s hometowns or visiting different places in the city that have special meaning to them.
To learn about each other’s families, consider attending an upcoming family get-together or party with them.
Remember in How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days when Kate Hudson goes with Matthew McConaughey to visit his family for the weekend?
It’s that trip that lets her into more of his world, and she realizes what a special guy he is.
Now, of course, he’s also incredibly handsome, so that helps, but you get the point.
Learn about their background and family and you may find yourself seeing a whole new side of this person you’re slowly falling in love with.
It’s hard not to love someone when you are kind to them.
Consider doing a random act of kindness, perhaps on more than one occasion, to increase the affection you feel for them.
You can learn to love someone when you do something genuine for them.
Leave a kind note, drop off dinner, help them with something they’ve been stressing about, or maybe even give them a massage if you want to take things to the next level.
As you open your heart to them in humility, you can learn to see what makes them happy, and in doing so, you learn how to love them in a more intimate way.
It may still be just intentions of friendship, but it will help to lay the foundation for a stronger relationship in the future.
Going back to the statistics about arranged marriages in India, it is important to note that many couples spend a lot of time in the courting phase.
It sounds antiquated, but there is something to be said for taking things slow.
Let’s be honest, a one-night stand rarely leads to a long-lasting, loving relationship, right?
Instead of jumping the gun on intimacy, take your time getting to know each other.
Just have fun holding hands and making out for at least the first little while, and then once you start feeling more strongly for each other, you may find yourself even more attracted to them than you initially were.
There’s something to be said for letting the tension build – if you know what we mean.
Another way to learn to love someone is to find common interests and hobbies that you share between the two of you.
It’s easier to love someone when you do things together that you both enjoy.
This can also help you to bond intellectually because you are both knowledgeable about something.
You’d be surprised how attracted you are to someone who’s interested in the same thing as you.
It may be a certain type of cuisine, a genre of music or specific band, a TV show, a country you’ve both lived in, etc. You get the idea.
Whatever your common interests are, find ways to incorporate them into different dates and activities you do together.
For example, if you both enjoy Thai food, you could go to a Thai restaurant, cook a Thai recipe together, and shop at a Thai or Asian market if your town has one.
The more opportunities you have to bond over your common interests, the better friends (and maybe lovers) you can become.
As you can see, there are many ways you can get to know someone well enough to love them.
It really is possible. It is also important to ask yourself if this person is worth loving.
Everyone deserves to be loved, yes. But don’t force yourself to love someone who doesn’t have your best interests at heart.
If you are in an unhealthy, toxic, or abusive relationship, do not tell yourself that you need to do better at learning to love them.
Instead, love yourself enough to leave that relationship and find someone who is worthy of your love.
Did you and your significant other love each other from the start? Or were you friends first and lovers later?
Do you agree that you can learn to love someone? Tell us in the comments!