Chick flicks, rom-coms, romances, all terms for the movies that fool the minds of young women in a matter of two hours. These movies not only convey false expectations for falling in love but false expectations for marriage and what it is really like to be in a relationship. In iconic movies such as The Notebook and Notting Hill viewers are essentially sucked in by the unbreakable love and incredible romance two main characters feel for eachother. Not only do viewers witness this love but the relentless lengths the male character will go to in order to get the girl.This causes imaginations and hopes to raise. Now the question is are our expectations too high?
What We See When We Think Of Love
In romantic movies we are shown such great lengths a man will go to to get the girl. In quite possibly the most romantic movie of the century The Notebook Noah (Ryan Gosling) must fight for the love of his life. He demonstrates outrageous acts of love toward Allie (Rachel McAdams) such as writing her every day for one whole year while they were apart. Noah says “I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough”.This is what a lot people picture when they think of love. It is this effortless love that people expect. The kind of love where nobody gets angry, sad, jealous ect. The kind of love that everyone strives for.
While In Reality…
What most don’t realize that in any healthy relationship there is work to be had. Weather the couple likes it or not.
In reality of relationships there are arguments and hard times. “A real relationship is one where you take out the garbage, pay the bills and talk about your kids,” Reid Daitzman said in an interview with Relevant magazine. Relationships are not always plush and perfect like shown in some movies. In the movie Date Night, Steve Carell and Tina Fey’s characters are experiencing a stale marriage with little excitement at the beginning of the movie. They both feel like their marriage is slowing down and becoming boring. A lot of people may feel this way in their relationships but just like in Date Night people spice it up and try new things with their spouse. This is where these type of movies may be good. They can help give couples ideas of how to keep their love alive preventing break ups.
What Women Expect
Most girls including myself look for the kinds of love seen in the best love stories. But the question is does that love actually exist? Well according to Dr. Bjarne Holmes from Heriot Watt University in an article from Telegraph“People feel if their relationship is not like a Hollywood film then it is not any good”. This is showing that people go into their relationships having expectations of a love unlike any other kind. Not saying it does not exist but just that for most people when you have these movie like standards in your head it causes one to be more judgmental on their relationships. It is because of these love stories that people are raising their expectations that is making women feel like if you have just love your relationship can work perfectly. But in any good relationship comes work and that is the thing that women are forgetting.
The movie The Time Traveler’s Wife highlights not only part of the reality of falling in love but also shows the work to be had in a marriage. It takes away the fake effect of love that many romantic movies create. The main plot explains a deteriorating marriage because of a husband who is constantly disappearing. This leaving causes stress on the relationship much like the stress real couples experience during marriage.
“Rom-com” movies can have quite an effect on a relationship. Dr. Bjorne Holmes in an article from Time Magazine says, ” People commonly mix up that if your partner truly loves you they’d know what you need without you communicating it.”. This is one thing that people think when they are in a relationship. And if they need to tell their spouse what they want or need that they are not truly in love, or they do not have a strong bond and connection. This thought confuses people in their relationships causing them to rethink the love they have for another person.
The CDC says “in the US today 50% of marriages end in divorce”. One possible reason for this to be present is because of romance movies. In romances there is a sense of falling madly in love and wanting to have total devotion to a person. By the time people have been in long term relationships this sense of overwhelming love for another person fades.
Not only does this feeling cause divorce but it could also cause someone to break off and may have an affair. This being for the reason of that want for the rush of initially falling in love with someone. The rush that most people strive for in their whole married life. The rush that couples in romance movies feel forever.
They’re Not All Bad
Romance movies are not the most terrible thing to face the world. There are upsides. One upside is that “they provide hope for the unattached. We need to live by stories that help us deal with tough realities. They can convince us that no matter how misshapen, decrepit, or dull we are, there is someone out there for us” said Philip Hodson in an article from Time Magazine. So even though they do create unrealistic expectations for how easy it is to find a perfect love and how effortless love can be, they also can give us hope. They can help us remember that there is someone out there for everyone and help motivate people to get out there.
Feature image from: Pexels.com Written by: Lainey Rossum