What, in your opinion, is the most over-used ideaexpressed in a popular saying?
It's what starry-eyed lovers whisper asthey gaze at a Paris sunset, what 10-year-olds shout to their mothers as theysprint toward the already departing morning bus, and what teenage girls screamand squeal at their favorite Backstreet Boy. It's supposed to be the deepestlevel of emotional connection between people, yet society has transformed it intoa pop-icon phrase to be screened onto glittery fuchsia tank tops and writteninside Hallmark cards with pastel kittens and butterflies dancing on the cover.The phrase, of course, is "I love you."
But what could be wrongwith overusing such a positive phrase? It seems there is so much hate in theworld that "I love you" would be a breath of fresh air. The more aphrase is used, however, the less meaningful it becomes. When a person reallymeans it, the phrase is so overused that the extraordinary meaning is lost.
Should the words used to describe my relationship with my grandmother bethe same I use to address my French fries? I think not. And what about the lovey-dovey teenagers who cry out "I love you" during every class break whileadoringly staring into each other's eyes, yet never understand the meaning of thewords they say?
The phrase "I love you" should be left onlyfor those who fully comprehend and appreciate it, not for those with a two-weekinfatuation.
But how can we change the way this message is used, andthe superficial meaning it has received? It's not about allowing our hormones tospeak for us or using the words carelessly. It's about using the expression onlywhen we have a truly special bond with someone. These words should only be usedwith someone whom we cherish and who can acknowledge the amazing union we havetogether. Otherwise, the meaning will be lost forever.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.