The First Cut is the Deepest
Why first love is real love...
You never forget your first love. FACT. Not cliché but science ladies. Right now your parents might be criticising you for spending too much time obsessing over your love life but the chances are they are secretly day-dreaming about their first relationship and yearning for the kind of passion it made them feel.
IMPRINTING- The reason people say you never forget your first love is because you literally never do. Or rather can't. Apparently imprinting isn't just something that happens in Twilight but a real scientific occurrence. When we fall in love for the first time pathways in our brain literally 'light up' for the first time and create a blue-print of what love is. It is a similar biological attachment to the one an infant feels to it's mother and has an almost unrivalled hold over us. The memories of the love are impossible to eradicate because we store in them in the amygdala, the most primitive part of our brains. They become physically part of us, so even if we want to get rid of them, we can't.
LOVE IS A DRUG- LITERALLY- When teenagers fall in love the effect it has on their brain is similar to taking cocaine. It's so pleasurable it's almost like an addiction. Spending hours on the phone or face to face, day-dreaming about them and not being able think about anything else is completely normal. You're not going mental (even if it feels like it), you're just experiencing a chemical reaction in your brain that is unstoppable and so powerful that people have been trying to figure it out since Aristotle.
A PROBLEM SHARED- Being a teenager is really f**king hard. You live with people who think they have the right to dictate the way you think, feel and behave and who question your ability to run your own life. It's easy to be ruled by your insecurities and lie awake at night worrying that your Edward Cullen will never come and sit at the end of your bed because you're not good enough. Therefore when it actually does happen all those worries and insecurities are sort of dispelled because someone does feel the way about you that you have always wanted someone to. It's a cure all remedy for the adolescent shit-mill.
NOTHING TO DECLARE- Adult relationships are more likely to come with baggage. The hurt of previous rejections and failures and the disappointment that the person you thought was 'the one' actually wasn't. First love comes in what it's wearing and isn't even carrying hand luggage. You are what you are and it stands alone. Which makes it pretty special and perfect really...
LET'S TALK ABOUT SEX - First love often accompanies losing our virginity and that is a once in a life-time experience. You can't get it back so it's natural that the person you share those first physical experiences with takes on a significant role in your heart and memory.
THE BAD NEWS- Scientists reckon that if we want to have long and successful relationships as adults then it's best to avoid first love altogether as it sets unrealistic and unhelpful benchmarks for the future. Remarkably, it seems that the secret to long-term happiness is to skip a first relationship. 'In an ideal world, you would wake up already in your second relationship' says scientist Malcolm Brynin. First love is so intense, exciting and intoxicating that anything that comes afterwards seems boring and mundane in comparison.
Would you swap your Edward Cullen for Mr Reliable? We didn't think so....
This feature was written by Whatever After reader Sachini. If you've want to write for us send your idea to firstname.lastname@example.org