What is Love, Anyway? A "Twilight" Persuasive Essay

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If you were given two choices, which would you choose: to either live for an eternity with a controlling boyfriend whilst leaving behind all traces of your former life and family, or to live your life to your fullest with a happy, loving boyfriend who gives you your freedom while keeping your family close? A hard choice to make, isn’t it? How about choosing heroin over fresh, crisp, air? In the world of Twilight Edward Cullen is the ‘perfect’ vampire boyfriend that Bella is madly in love with but later unfortunately dumps Bella and moves away. In enters Jacob Black, a friend of the family who picks up the pieces of Bella’s heart and helps her heal by offering her friendship, laughter, and smiles. But then, (cue dramatic music) Edward puts himself in danger and Bella comes to his rescue. Edward wants to make a reappearance in Bella’s life, and Jacob has been there through the fire. Which to choose, which to choose? Jacob Black’s love is the healthiest and happiest choice for Bella- he makes Bella genuinely happy and makes it clear where he stands for her; he gives her the freedom to make her own decisions and live her own life; and their love is real and together they can grow along with their love.

Before Jacob came along, Bella’s life was in total darkness; the light of her life was gone and she was stuck in a rut. With Jacob came light. In New Moon, Chapter 6, page 145, Bella describes Jacob as, “Jacob was simply a perpetually happy person, and he carried that happiness with him like an aura, sharing it with whoever was near him. Like an earthbound sun, whenever someone was within his gravitational pull, Jacob warmed them. It was natural, a part of who he was. No wonder I was so eager to see him.” Bella gravitated to his happiness, she was the moth to his light. He made her laugh for the first time in months as it says in New Moon, Chapter 6, page 141, “I was laughing, actually laughing, and there wasn’t even anyone watching. I felt so weightless that I laughed again, just make the feeling last longer.” In the subject of sincerity and openness, Jacob scores a perfect 10. He lets her know exactly what he feels for her and listens and accepts what she feels for him in return. In Eclipse, Chapter 14, page 327, Jacob confesses, “I’m in love with you, Bella. Bella, I love you. And I want you to pick me instead of him. I know you don’t feel that way, but I need the truth out there so that you know your options. I wouldn’t want a miscommunication to stand in our way.”

When Edward makes his reappearance, he brings with him a possessive and overprotective trait that stains Bella and his relationship. He becomes so concerned with her safety he starts to forbid her from doing some of her favorite activities, such as going to La Push to see Jacob. His attempts become obsessive when he starts messing with her car so that she can’t sneak out and go without his knowing and by kidnapping her to his house to be babysat by his sister to make sure she stays where he knows. He disregards her feelings towards his new concerns and doesn’t listen to her when she insists she would be just as safe with Jacob as with Edward. However, this could all be avoided if Bella chose Jacob- he gives Bella the freedom to do what she pleases. If Bella wanted to do something reckless, Jacob would not only let her, he would be right beside her doing it with her while making sure she didn’t hurt herself. In New Moon, Chapter 16, page 367, Jacob says “Look, do you mind saving the stupid stuff for when I’m around? I won’t be able to concentrate if I think you’re jumping off cliffs behind my back.”, proof that he prefers to be around when Bella decides to do something reckless so that he’s able to protect her from herself. Jacob is also not afraid to tell Bella the truth. He knows she’s strong enough to be able to deal with it and he’s not afraid to scare her with it. However, Edward keeps information from her that he thinks will scare her and instead makes decisions for her about the situation without telling her until last minute. Like Jacob says in Eclipse, Chapter 3, page 81, “Better frightened than lied to.”

Bella and Edward are the obvious love pairing in Twilight. Their chemistry, which is extremely high, plays a major part in their love: Edward is particularly attracted to the scent of her blood and is amazed that he cannot read her mind; Bella is struck by his surreal beauty and his mysterious vampire life. Without these factors, would these two have ended up together in normal circumstances? Jacob Black was already making his way into her life- his father and Bella’s father were best friends and their paths would have collided even without Bella speeding up the process by going to him for help. With Jacob’s easy warmth and friendliness, Bella and Jacob would have ended up together naturally. In Eclipse, Chapter 26, page 599, Jacob says,
“I’m exactly right for you, Bella. It would have been effortless for us — comfortable, easy as breathing. I was the natural path your life would have taken... If the world was the way it was supposed to be, if there were no monsters and no magic...” Indeed it would have been an easy, effortless love. With Edward, Bella can’t trust Edward’s love completely after he left, not that she was completely sure of it in the beginning; getting over being lied to about someone loving you is a hard thing to do. Since Edward is a vampire, he is frozen in time. In Eclipse, Chapter 22, page 500, he says “You think of me as a... living stone — hard and cold. That’s true. We are set the way we are, and it is very rare for us to experience a real change. When that happens, as when Bella entered my life, it is a permanent change. There’s no going back...” Edward’s feelings for Bella are permanent but since Bella is a human, and a very young one at that, she has a lot of room left to grow and change. In a healthy relationship, a couple should be able to grow and change together through life- it’s a part of life and therefore a part of love. Bella and Edward’s relationship is co-dependent and can be considered borderline abusive when adding in the manipulations Edward made to ensure Bella was ‘safe’. Also, after his return, Edward made sure to tell Bella of how he literally wouldn’t live without her, as in New Moon, Chapter 23, page 509, “ I thought I’d explained it clearly before. Bella, I can’t live in a world where you don’t exist.” This type of romantic confession had a manipulative edge to it, unlike Jacob’s, “Until your heart stops beating, Bella. I’ll be here — fighting. Don’t forget that you have options.”, found in Eclipse, Chapter15, page 330, which states his devotion to her without manipulating her with guilt.

Love often blinds people from what they don’t want to see. Often, true love is right there in front of you, like Jacob to Bella. What they have isn’t merely an obsession-driven lust fueled by a misleading chemistry, it’s real and it’s perfect for them. In Eclipse,Chapter 26, page 599, Jacob explains Edward’s effect on Bella perfectly: “He’s like a drug for you, Bella. I see that you can’t live without him now. It’s too late. But I would have been healthier for you. Not a drug; I would have been the air, the sun.” Jacob is healthier, and he would have filled Bella’s life with happiness, freedom, and the purest, most sincere love that anyone could give. If that’s not what real love is, then I don’t know what is.





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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

kimberss said...
Nov. 17, 2011 at 1:09 pm
I used your article to show how to write a persuasive essay in my class.  Wonderful job in supporting your opinions!
 
Dani said...
May 29, 2011 at 2:06 pm
I like your commentary.   It is very thought out and very well written.   And, you provide quotes that drive your point home.   Nicely done.  However, one important factor missing - and the factor that helped make Bella's decision - was the imprinting.   Sam loved Leah until he imprinted on Emily and that caused a lot of pain.  Bella specifically asked Jacob if he'd imprinted on anyone - namely I herself - in which he'd responded "you would know ... (more »)
 
Zakiametoo This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Apr. 25, 2009 at 2:10 am
I definitely see where you are coming from. Thanks so much for commenting and reading.
 
keziabbyx3 said...
Apr. 21, 2009 at 8:05 pm
Thts comepltetley right but Jacob is a werewolf and if he gets mad at Bella for a reason he could really hurt her like Sam did Emily. Edward might me dangerous but in my opinion shes not right for neither.
 
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