True Love … What Does it Really Mean?


True Love

In the Wedding Crashers, Owen Wilson came up with a bit of brilliance. Rachel McAdams asked him what is the meaning of true love?

 “True love Is your soul’s recognition of its counterpoint in another.”

 Sounds profound, doesn’t it?  Then, in the movie, Owen admits he’d seen that on a bumper sticker.

When I Googled True Love, I came up with over 4 million responses. Not surprising. Love is what makes the world go around.  Love is the most universal emotion.  This is what I tell people who don’t ‘get’ romance novels.

So what, I ponder, is true love? 

 In Brief:

For me, it’s to love someone more than you love yourself.  It’s sacrifice and compromise, and turning the other cheek when necessary.  Some love is unconditional.  But I associate that more with the love a parent has for a child or grandchild.

True love between a man and a woman can be simple in nature.  It’s less profound and more practical. 

True love means always having to say you’re sorry!  (Sorry- Ryan O’Neal got it wrong)  

True love means you go see, The Dark Knight because you know he’ll enjoy it, when you’re really dying to see Momma Mia. 

True love means a kiss good-bye in the morning and kiss hello when he comes home. And for me, it’s the “good dinner” kiss I get after I make a meal- burnt, late, tasteless or not.

True love means loving him wildly even though he’s never read one of your books all the way through.

To be fair, true love means dragging him to every single historical museum while vacationing, without one complaint on his part. 

 In Biblical terms:

 Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things; believes all things; hopes all things; endures all things.


Elizabeth Barrett Browning:

(one of my favorites)

 How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candle-light.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints, -I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life! – and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death

 Famous Love Quotes:


Albert Einstein

Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love.

 Jean Anouilh
Love is, above all else, the gift of oneself.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
All mankind loves a lover.

Thomas Fuller
Choose a wife by your ear than your eye.



Jim Morrison
Love cannot save you from your own fate.




Top Ten Movies about Love and Romance:




Pretty Woman  (1990)

When Harry Met Sally (1989)

Four Weddings and A Funeral (1994)

Strictly Ballroom (1992)

Sleepless in Seattle (1993)

Working Girl (1988)

Titanic (1997)

A Room With a View (1986)

Sliding Doors (1998)

Life is Beautiful (1998)


We write about it and we read about it, so what do you find is the meaning of true love?  How many of those movies do you agree with?  I’m sure you have others to add.  


Click on Five-Star Cowboy to begin Suite Reading!

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41 thoughts on “True Love … What Does it Really Mean?”

  1. True love to me is loving because he still looks at me as if I were that young girl he met 48 years ago.

  2. Pretty Woman is one of my FAVORITE movies!

    I agree with your descriptions of true love. For me, true love is when your lover compares his love to a rock “strong, solid and not another in the world like it.” 🙂

    Lovely post.

  3. For me the meaning of true love is quite a lot of the things you mentioned-

    I definitely get the morning good-bye kiss, the evening hello kiss and the “good dinner” kiss. I love him like crazy even when he hasn’t read a single story I’ve written. He said he would, but he’s not much of a book reader, unless it’s comics or sports magazines…

    I agree with the movies, but would have to add The Notebook and 50 First Dates. The Notebook for his determination to help his wife remember their life together, never giving up hope or faith and loving her, all the way to the end.

    And 50 First Dates for his ability to understand her, love her and make the sacrifices necessary to build a life with her, even when she would have to re-learn that life every single day. That’s true love.

    To me, it’s definitely about companionship and like interests, compromise and sacrifice and acceptance of who each of you really are…

    One of my favorite poems is by Percy Bysshe Shelley- Love’s Philosophy-

    The fountains mingle with the river
    And the rivers with the ocean,
    The winds of heaven mix for ever
    With a sweet emotion;
    Nothing in the world is single,
    All things by a law divine
    In one another’s being mingle—
    Why not I with thine?

    See the mountains kiss high heaven,
    And the waves clasp one another;
    No sister-flower would be forgiven
    If it disdain’d its brother;
    And the sunlight clasps the earth,
    And the moonbeams kiss the sea—
    What are all these kissings worth,
    If thou kiss not me?

    And also a good song that I find describes true love very well is Tim McGraw’s You Just Get Better All The Time.(just the other day I heard you read my mind…) Beautiful.

    And several Clint Black ones- Something That We Do, When I Said I Do, Easy For Me To Say.

  4. Charlene,

    This is a beautiful post. I love the poem by Elizabeth Browning and Taryn, I love the poem by Shelley. Beautiful, beautiful.

    Love — another very wise man said that love is an intensity of happiness directed toward another.

    I would add that it is a grace that one dusts upon another — it can’t be forced nor bought, but is very self-determinedly given, or it isn’t love at all.


  5. Oops, I forgot to add that the person who said that — love being an intensity of happiness directed toward another (that’s not a direct quote) was Mr. Ron Hubbard.

    Again, what a beautiful post.

  6. Hi PamT — I felt that way about my husband while giving birth to our two babies. He was there every step of the way, lending support. I felt his love and strength and that got me through. Rock solid is a great way to describe True Love!

  7. Hi Taryn – Your husband sounds exactly like mine! While he doesn’t read my books, he’s my biggest fan. He helps me when I’m stressed with a deadline (like doing laundry, grocery shopping) You know … those things that seem trivial when you’re racing to finish your book.

    Shelley’s poem is wonderful! Thanks for posting -those decriptions are right on!

  8. Hi Kay – What a beautiful sentiment – a grace that one dusts upon another. Is that yours? You write with such eloquence! And I agree with L. Ron Hubbard’s quote too. Love is truly directing happiness toward another.

  9. Thanks for the beautiful post, Charlene. When people ask me why I write “those little books” I remind them that the most thrilling experience in life is falling in love. Romance stories let the reader relive that wonderful rush.

    You sound like one lucky lady, and your husband is one lucky man!

  10. Hi Elizabeth! I’m glad you’re still a believer! Hard to write romance otherwise. I’m anxious to hear if that phrase is yours?

    Hi Cher – I LOVE the goofy Princess Bride movie. We never miss it when it’s on TV!

  11. Beautiful post, Charlene! The “Love is patient” brought back such a lovely memory–I got to read that scripture at my niece’s wedding a year ago–and I didn’t even cry.

    This movie itself isn’t a romance LOL but I love the love story in Last of the Mohicans. On your list, Four Weddings and Sliding Doors are two of my all-time favorites. (Titanic goes without saying LOL)

    True love at our house includes him putting up with my checkbook which is always in a constant state of turmoil and emptiness.

    Thanks for a great start to my Friday.

  12. Hi Tanya,

    I do love Last of the Mohicans too. Wish it had a better ending. Hey, that might be the subject of another blog, Movies You’d Like to Rewrite The Endings!

    I do love An Officer and a Gentleman too. We get to see Richard Gere’s character really develop and change. Can’t beat that ending … classic romance when he carries her out of the building and she puts on his navy hat!

  13. Charlene,

    Love your post! I think love is two hearts that beat as one, where there’s no way to tell where one ends and the other begins. It’s a love that’s eternal and extends beyond death. It’s a love that gives and takes in equal measure.

    My favorite romantic movie of all time is “While You Were Sleeping.” I love how Sandra Bullock fell in love so quietly in the beginning and how her love deepened as the story progressed. I also like Pretty Woman too.

    Congratulations on the release of “Five Star Cowboy.” Yea! I just bought it and have only read the first chapter but I’m already drawn in to the story. Trent is sooooo sexy! 🙂

  14. I like many of your quotes and movies 🙂 I think that true love is behaving consistently in a loving way, whether or not you happen to have loving feelings at the time; sometimes that means putting the other person’s feelings and needs ahead of your own; not to the point of demeaning yourself, but just treasuring the other person.

  15. Your post is sweet today Charlene.

    You know when you said, “True love Is your soul’s recognition of its counterpoint in another.”

    …Well, I wrote a scene in one of my wips where the souls of the 2 protags immediately recognize each other at first glance – and one of my CP’s said I should take it out b/c it’s just lust.

    I dunno – maybe it’s the way I wrote it, but she said it was way too soon for them to start feeling with any depth like the soul.

  16. Hi Charlene! Great question! When I think of true love, I think of Shrek saying it. And his explanation of how he’s like an onion with many layers. LOL.

    I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who disagrees with “Love is never having to say you’re sorry.” I never did get that. Saying not sorry about what? Dying? Or no apologies ever about anything?

    Your post was very entertaining–made me laugh, ponder, and sigh!

  17. Hi Linda – Yes, I loved While You Were Sleeping too. It was such a unique premise and well-cast imho.
    Thanks for the kind words about my book! I’m glad you found Trent sexy — I did too!

    I liked your explanation of True Love! Especially the “give and take” part. Very beautiful.

  18. Hi Anita mae – I dunno either. I believe in love at first sight so your premise sounds good to me!
    My father took one look at my mother and knew he was going to marry her. He even told her that on their first date – and mom only laughed, thinking it nonsense. But my Dad said he knew immediately.

    And my daughter’s fiance said something similiar to her, on one of their early dates. They are getting married in October. Soooo, it can happen!

  19. Hi Kate – Thanks for agreeing about the Love Means Never Having to Say You’re Sorry? What? I never got that either. Those blessed words, “I’m sorry” have saved many a marriage.

    What about Jim Morrison’s quote? I found that most intriguing and sad. It’s as if he knew his own fate?

  20. I agree with you all on the “Love is never having to say you’re sorry.” I’ve always thought the writer of ‘Love Story’ – Eric Seagall? or someone? just used it for a cop-out as a msg to someone in his real-life. Just MHO.

    When I first met my hubby, I’d just finished an evening shift in the Cheyenne Norad Complex equivalent where I worked ‘way down underground’ in North Bay, Ont. I went to the mess to relax with my roomie who was an MP and sat at a table with a half dozen other MPs. One cute guy at the end of the table kept staring at me. After a half hr though, I became very uncomfortable. Then when he asked me to dance, everyone at the table stilled at the same time I nodded to him. That totally creeped me out. I mean, who was this guy? An axe murderer? B/c as we walked away, they were all staring at us. But he was such a nice guy and I enjoyed the dances we shared.

    When I got back to my barrack room, I asked my roomie why they all stared and she said b/c the man who asked me to dance hadn’t danced or been seen otherwise in the company of a woman since a bad relationship ended 2 yrs previus. Wow!

    I married him and he’s always told me (and everyone else who’ll listen :-)) that when I sat down at that table late that night, he knew as soon as he saw me that he was going to marry me.

    We’ll celebrate 32 yrs together this Dec. 🙂

  21. Oh WOW! Anita mae – that is such a wonderful story of your first meeting. I got chills. Thanks for sharing — it does remind me of my mom and dad’s story.
    I’ve been married for 34 years. Didn’t they just fly by?

  22. True love… I have to say I loved your post… and totally agree with your choices.

    I once saw an 75 years old woman battling Alzeihmer and I used to see her coming to the hospital with her husband – himself being 80… they were holding hands like young loves!

  23. Charlene – yeah, they do. Although I have to admit we’ve had our rocky years and almost split once but decided to stay together and work through it. And, I also have to admit that most of that was a self-image problem for me when I had a hard time believing a hunk like him could really love a woman who continually had a weight problem. Of course, once we ‘had it out’, I found out he had a self-image problem, too! Who knew?

    Nathalie – I love watching our elders display their feelings to each other. Such a learning experience for our young ‘uns.

  24. Hi Nathalie – It’s wonderful when I see that. I often, think that I’ll be one of those, God Willing, to still hold hands with my spouse when I’m up in years. It’s adorable. And I remember, one friend, who saw my older (not elderly) parents holding hands – She asked if they were newlyweds to my puzzlement. They’d always showed outward signs of affection, but to some, it was surprising. 🙂

  25. I Corinthian 13:4 has always said it all for me!

    I’ve only seen 2 of the movies you listed, Pretty
    Woman and Sleepless in Seattle. My favorite is
    Love With A Proper Stranger, with Steve McQueen &
    Natalie Woods, made in 1963.

    True love is being married to your spouse for 47
    years after meeting him 49 years ago, you are over
    70 years old, still battling a weight problem and he thinks you are even more beautiful today! I love him for having such bad eyesight and for
    being a supportive husband and father.

    Happy Birthday to Stacy!

    Pat Cochran

  26. What an interesting post, Charlene! Love all the famous-people quotes 🙂 On my website I have “Love doesn’t make the world go round; Love is what makes the ride worthwhile” I truly believe that.

    I was fifteen the first time I saw my hubby…mid-December, my first day at a new school and this guy walked by, long, lean, shaggy auburn hair, bright blue eyes and he gave me this sheepish grin (pretty wild considering I had part of my head shaved and he was like…normal *g*) I stopped dead in my tracks and said, “I have got to have his children.” We started dating the next month and twenty-four years later our boys are now teenagers!

    Do you think we create our own destiny? *g*

  27. The best movie I have seen that describes love is “Return to me”. For those that hasn’t seen this movie. It is about a man’s wife who is killed in a car accident and her heart is given to another woman, whom he falls in love with later on. The grandfather describes this as “maybe this heart was destined to always be with you” Something like that not exactly a direct quote.

    In mad black woman they describe how they know they love one another is ” I pray for you more than myself, Your smile is my reason for living, When I am away from you I can’t get you off my mind.”

    I do believe in soul mates. I was lucky I found mine. It was as if we had known each other our whole life.

  28. Stacey – Happy Birthday! I hope you make your deadline/chapter. And you need to elaborate, part of your head was shaved? Better yet, got any pictures? 🙂

    Loved how you met your hubby at school. I met my guy in High School, but had a crush on him in Junior high!

    Sometimes, yes I believe we create our own destiny!!

  29. Hi Sherry – I cried my heart out with Return to Me! What a great premise that story had! If you haven’t seen it, it’s worth renting everyone – Minnie Driver and David Ducovny (sp?)
    So glad you found your soul mate, Sherry. How wonderful!

  30. I think true, deep, surviving love is, at it’s foundation, about respect.

    Marry a man you truly respect and that will carry you through the times when love feels hard to find.

    But during the less romantically fruitful times in a marriage, those days when you’re considering gnawing your foot off to escape from this trap and wondering if you’re doing more harm to your children by staying (of course I’ve never had those times!!!!!!!) if you don’t respect the one you’re with it becomes much, much harder to figure out what you’re doing with your life.
    so marry a man you respect and love can rest forever on that firm foundation.

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