First Love – 8 Young Indians Reminisce About The First Time They Fell In Love - Homegrown

First Love – 8 Young Indians Reminisce About The First Time They Fell In Love

Do you remember the first time you fell in love? How flustered you felt from the wave of emotions you experienced while you stole a glance at them? It can be extremely confusing too if your first love is unrequited, nevertheless, it is forever etched in our hearts. A memory, a time or a kiss –– first loves are whirlwinds escaping to happen. We asked our readers about their first love experiences –– what happened to them, how it felt and what love means to them.

I. Rigved, 21

Tell us about your first love.

She was out of my league and yet very humble. Later, I got to know she was being way too nice and then I respected her space. Now I have mixed thoughts about that time of mine. I was 16 and she was two years senior to me and just someone who made an introverted guy like me fall for her. I wrote a blog about her and it had 1000 views, which is a big thing for me. After telling her my side of the story, she told me thank you and that was best moment. I didn’t have any long interactions at all, she knows I like her and we just talk around this fact, which is why she is special.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

Love is so subtle that even smallest acknowledgement from the person you love will make your day. It doesn’t need any taglines such as best friend, girl friend or boyfriend. When your subtle flirtatious comments are responded by her with a smile, you know your love is right.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Maybe I should have pushed myself little more and be more vocal about me wanting to have long conversations with her. I still think I should have gone a step ahead for an interaction, maybe we would have something in common.

II. Shubhangi, 23

Shubhangi Misra Love stories from 8 young Indian men and women about boyfriends, girlfriends, relationships and more
Shubhangi Misra

Tell us about your first love.

I have had a few crushes and flings during my teenage years and mistook them for love at that time. I understood that they weren’t love, but merely attractions when I really fell in love for the first time. It happened at the age of 16. With my best friend. Now, I won’t paint a rose-tinted picture here. No ‘knocked the wind out of me’, or ‘swept me off my feet’. It was a very real, very raw feeling. For a long time, I never understood what it was or why I felt that way towards him. I always brushed it off as a fact that he’s obviously my best friend, so liking him as a person would be natural. It first dawned upon me when (luckily for me) he confessed his love for me, and guess what, I rejected him, because “how could we be together? No way!” And then it struck me. I started going through so many emotions at once, things I never felt before. It started hurting me to look at him. I slowly realised that I loved him too, and it’s just my denial which is causing me to feel all of this, and I confessed. We started dating. It’s been seven years and we’re still going strong like we’ll always be.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

Love for me used to be this rose gold, shiny thing that comes into your life like a gust of wind and makes your world go around. You know, this thing portrayed in movies and shows and books? Being in love for so many years, seeing each other grow, seeing our feelings grow, I have realised that love is not just that shiny thing anymore. It’s not just about holding hands, chocolates, gifts or valentines. Love is a lot more than that. Love is holding on to each other in the best and worst of times. Love is taking care of the smallest of things and realising that little things matter the most. Love is not waiting for a prince charming, but finding someone who could be with you all their life, support you and love you till the very last breath.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Stop being insecure about yourself. Stop thinking that you deserve any less because you deserve so much more! And hell, you’re gonna get every bit of it. Have some patience and wait for the right person to come along. Trust me, he will. Also, stop idolising Bollywood romance! Love is anything but that.

III. Asha, 33

Asha Suparna Love stories from 8 young Indian men and women about boyfriends, girlfriends, relationships and more
Asha Suparna

Tell us about your first love.

I was 13 and he was just a boy who came over to his grandparents place every vacation. I fell for him, hard and fast, because he made me laugh, didn’t think I was weird and knew when I was sad. He always made it a point to bring me something — a little present, every time he saw me and knew was someone who knew when I needed a hug and when I needed to scream. He helped me with algebra and told me that failing wasn’t the end of the world, when I failed my first (and only) English paper. He was really something else. And he’s someone who’ll always have a piece of my heart.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

The basic meaning of love, for me, hasn’t changed. It’s when someone is there for you, through thick or thin and who accepts you for who you are, without expecting you to change. (This I believe, works for any type/kind of relationship).

What advice would you give your younger self?

Learn to let go; don’t dwell on the past.

IV. Taarini Upadhyay, 23

Tell us about your first love.

My first love was at 13, as young as that sounds you truly believe that you’re going to marry this person, right? At 13, you plan everything without knowing the realities of life, it’s both funny and adorable. It was cliché but back then it felt special, the hiding from our parents and calling each other, syncing our school toilet breaks so we could see each other for even five seconds. I remember my first kiss so clearly; he kissed me and ran away, and I just sat there as if all the oxygen had been drained from my body. For me, my first love taught me how to love unconditionally, because when you’re 13 it’s easy to love without any fear, you don’t know what life is about. My first love was dreamy, unrealistic but so unforgettable.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

From then to now at 23, I have realised what I truly don’t want. I realised that love isn’t always about fast heartbeats, feeling weak in the knees or dying of excitement and nervousness when you see them. Love is calm. Love is comfort. Love is secure. My relationship today is exactly that, it calms my storms after a rough day at work, it makes me feel secure when my anxiety is driving me crazy, it pushes me to be the best version of myself while also giving me the comfort that I need through it. For me? Love is real, nothing like the romantic comedies we’ve seen all our lives but so much more.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t cry so much, I know you feel hurt right now and I know you feel like you’ll never love like this again, but you will. “Everything happens for a reason” is not just an overused quote but it truly has meaning. Learn from your relationships, accept your mistakes, but always, always, love yourself more than anyone else.

V. Disha, 20

Taarini Upadhyay Love stories from 8 young Indian men and women about boyfriends, girlfriends, relationships and more
Disha Joshi

Tell us about your first love.

My first love didn’t bloom into a white tale. It was not reciprocated, you see. My first love was crass, painful and intense. It changed me deeply. Trust issues, self-loathing, inferiority complex, are a direct result of that time. It’s not just the person who made it tough, it was the others around me and even myself. My first love still haunts me, but I’m grateful for it. I have never loved so deeply and I’m not sure I ever will. It did give me one gift though, the art of writing. It made me look at myself and find solace in books and literature. I saw two sides of the world which I was guarded from. I saw the evil in people, the selfish. It did start innocently with a glance at a cute boy sitting in class but it didn’t end so. I realise even today; how difficult love is. It’s no fairy-tale but it’s still fruitful in one way or another.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

No, the meaning of love has not evolved for me. It’s always been the same and it will continue to be the same. The intensity of it has still not surfaced yet. But the idea in itself has not changed. I have derived different types of love. Some selfless, some deep, some in the form of mutual respect, some in the form of friendship, some through parentage, some in familial bonds, some sad and some hopeless.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t show yourself to the world so easily. Trust only those who deserve. Be strong and don’t lose yourself to the wind.

VI. Janvi Shukla, 23

Janvi Shukla Love stories from 8 young Indian men and women about boyfriends, girlfriends, relationships and more
Janvi Shukla

Tell us about your first love.

My first love was my best friend, who would not leave his girlfriend despite acknowledging the feelings we both had and how we were more in sync than him and his girlfriend. I couldn’t be in touch with him due to that and thus I distanced myself from him, not seeing me every day made him realise that he couldn’t stay without me and thus finally broke up with his girlfriend. What worked between us was that we both had extreme personalities, everything that we did, individually or together, we always gave all our heart, soul and body.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

Me and my first love are, of course, not together anymore owing to some stupid choices we made. I don’t regret them and I’m sure he doesn’t either. I say this with absolute confidence that no guy has ever been able to or come close to match the level of comfort and purity of love that I had with my first love. Slowly, I’m beginning to realize that it won’t ever happen. My first love is till date the purest of form of love I’ve experienced outside of my family. I loved him immensely and a part of me still loves him and probably always will. Now that he is engaged and getting married this year, I realized that I was wrong for him, and he is truly happy with his current partner. So now my love for him is becoming this feeling where I love him, but I don’t want him to be with him since I can sense that he is really happy. I’m happy for him and am going to have to make do with the love I have in my heart for him and you know what? That’s enough.

What advice would you give your younger self?

To not fear love and let it flow, even if my relationship didn’t last, it has given me so many memories that I can truly say those memories are more valuable for me today and the guy himself. The level of mutual support, faith and trust that we had is beautiful and empowering to me even today.

VII. Palak, 20

Tell us about your first love.

As weird as this may sound, but my first love was long distant. We met on Facebook but we actually never met in real life until way after our breakup. I was a young teen, he lived in the south, older than me but not that old. I would sneak in my brother’s laptop to talk to him on Facebook, since I didn’t have a phone. Sometimes we would talk over the phone when I could get my mom’s phone. This went on for a year. And we really did love each other but we both also had this urge of taking the next step without knowing what it was. It never ended badly, we stopped talking for a while but then we became friends.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

He taught me that I deserved to be loved. Family relations were rough then, so I always felt neglected. He was always there to listen to me, to understand and to just say that it would be okay. I think that is still the first thing I see in someone when I get close enough, how do they make me feel. And that long distance is tough. But it taught me the value of communication, you have to be in each other’s loop. And that love is tough business but that doesn’t mean it’s not the most beautiful thing you’ll ever feel.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I guess I kept my worth in his palms. And that was wrong for me and for him. He gave me the confidence but also took it away. But otherwise my younger self did a pretty good job. I also wish in the future I just wouldn’t fall for anyone who was too good to me, there’s always a catch with it.

VIII. Divya, 20

Tell us about your first love.

I met this guy. It was quite fun we had good time. But as few months went by and thing went as a routine, he ghosted me and I did not know why. Well there were red flags quite a few of them which I did not consider as very seriously which I realised later on. But there was an instant connect with him which I have never got with anybody else. Like our choices, our taste was quite similar, I learned a lot from him about people and things change and most importantly how I could be my own self and people would still like me. That did boost up my self-confidence which I did not quite found before.

How has the meaning of love evolved for you over the years?

Love for me is making time for each other and understanding that sometimes you can’t make time for each other. But that shouldn’t dim your love. It’s a beautiful feeling that makes your world go ‘Oh la la’ and I still feel the same about love.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t push yourself for someone who won’t see you worthy. Because they still won’t.

If you enjoyed this article, we suggest you read:

Adjustment of Love: How Indian Couples Are Adapting Their Love To The Pandemic

Break-Ups In A Pandemic: Young Indians On How They Tried To Mend Their Broken Hearts In A Lockdown

Self-Love Isn’t Selfish: Three Indian Creators Tell You Why


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