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Teenagers Can Be In Love

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/28/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,083 times Debate No: 53547
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (4)
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It is a popular conception that teenagers aren't actually in love and that it is simply infatuation. I simply believe that this isn't true.
First round for acceptance and philosophy/statement on the subject.


Hi there! I'm glad such topic is brought up. I've been in love several times too, as a teenager; it's just that i was well-aware that it wasn't gonna last forever.

Currently, I am 18 and I regret everything i have done last year with my ex. We believed we were in love, but she was only 15 and her "love" appeared not to be all that real.

That ofcourse should not be generalised, but i think it is an exception if teenagers truly stay in love and eventually marry. First, we should define what love is (i leave that up to you!)
Then, you should tell me why you believe teenagers can truly be in love!
And lastly, you should clearly show the difference between a "crush" and a "love".

Personally, I have always believed in textbook medieval love where a boy and a girl live together forever. That teenagers date and kiss and even have sex under the age of 16, simply seemed ridiculous. Ofcourse, that might also be because i was one of the less attractive boys who wasn't getting any! ;)
Debate Round No. 1


You asked me to define love. I agree with you that we should agree on the terms of what qualifies between a "crush" and "love" but to give you a definition, I'm afraid, is impossible. It is my strong belief that not only are there different types of love but that no one person loves the same. So what is love for you may not be love for me. As for the "crush" vs "love" I think I can better out line that. For me the difference between a crush and love is a decision. If you have a crush, please let me know if you agree, it is an immediate attraction due to a first, brief, encounter, where as love is knowing a person for who they are and choosing to commit yourself to them regardless of flaws. But this cannot be one sided. In order for your medieval love to work, in which I too believe, both people must have equal commitment which is why teenagers have a hard time staying together and thus the misconception that we cannot be in love.

As for your second request as to why I believe we can be in love I must admit a bias. I have been with my current boyfriend for 6 years and seeing as I am almost 18 I don't need to tell you that he has been a big part of shaping me and my life. He was my first kiss and though he hasn't been my only kiss I can say with the utmost confidence that I believe he and I will last. Many people go through the "honeymoon" phase in which everything is nice and seems perfect but after the initial attraction wears off they break up. My boyfriend and I have broken up several times but because of our initial commitment we have come back together every time and are stronger for it. We see each other for who we are and it is this transparency between us that allows us to work. People tell us that we wont last because teenagers cannot be in love but what right do adults or other teenagers have to disqualify our love when they divorce or break up themselves? Are they then disqualified or wiser for it? Or is it all in circumstance? What makes you so adamant about "medieval love"?


About the first section where you define love: You are absolutely right, and i agree to such terms!

You have then described your personal story. As I guess right now, you feel attacked and would rather make this a personal affair? Or would you rather keep this general and applying to all teenagers?
From your personal story, it seems like during the break ups you had a flirt with at least one other boy. (that involved kissing). True love can overcome everything, even such events, but since you were a teenager you simply didn't understand the values of not cheating and being loyal yet. To me, it seems teenagers rather seek out their own benefit (be it very romantic and commiting) but not yet "serving" one another. Children under the age of 16 would never die for their lovers. This is an extreme example, but it's probably why you and your boyfriend broke up in the past: in the end, you were still chasing your own happiness.
Regarding to your comparison I must add that most adults still stay selfish, especially since the sexual revolution. But most adults are very reasonable and they simply know that divorcing or cheating is morally wrong if it's one-sided. In the case both parties aren't in love anymore, well, then both parties simply didn't have very special feelings for one another.

The adults who are judging you, are simply jealous because they haven't had such relationships back in their day. They were foolish enough to chase whomever they pleased at that time, not thinking of future. This kindof proves that you and your boyfriend really are exceptions, but that generally, teenagers will not stay with their high school loves and will regret it later as an adult. By the end of her life, an average good-looking woman has slept with over 20 boys in her life. That seems a ridiculously large amount, right? They too, feel bad about that number. Especially when they think they have found the right man, and he gets mad about it or becomes sexually frustrated (Julian Barnes has come up with this theory)

What makes me favour "medieval love"? Well, for a starters, people would ideally be equal and be given an equal amount of love/chances. In our society, less attractive persons often see how their attractive friends have all the "fun" with the other gender already at the age of 12, while they are forced to wait untill in their 20's. Ofcourse, I don't have to tell you that medieval love doesn't include cheating, children at a young age and an excessive amount of attention for the sexual side of the relationship. These are my 3 main arguments why teenagers should call their "love" crushes instead. Children simply should not kiss IMO, let alone have sex or make an achievment of these kinds of things.
What I WOULD approve, is relationships like they are often shown in Manga series: these show how people still have a fright of being near the other gender, and for that reason there is almost no jealousy, intimacy and most of all: it promotes the curiosity towards one other special person.
Debate Round No. 2


You make very good points and no I don't take this personally. I have to agree with you that as a whole teenagers do have crushes. But my goal of this debate is not to talk about the average teenager. I also agree with you that teenagers seek out their own benefit and happiness but I must point out that teenagers range from 13-19 and as you and I are still considered teenagers you must also agree with me that teenagers can over come this selfishness. If they truly are in love then they can be self-sacrificing for the person they love. The majority of the people I know who are now married are still with their high school sweetheart, and in one case, middle school. You also mentioned sexual frustration. This is a barrier that every couple has to over come simply because evolution has made us this way. We are physically at our prime in our late teens to early twenties and so this topic is almost unavoidable when you choose to be close to someone. But I don't think sexual relations should be an indication of wether or not what someone feels is love. In the event that sex does occur it is my personal opinion that you should stay with that person. I also think that if you made the choice to sleep with someone then you should be 100% committed to that person.

But we must also remember that teenagers are just that, teenagers. They are young, inexperienced , and they haven't had time to learn about relationships. Where can teenagers look to for a good example of a relationship? But my point is not that teenagers have the perfect relationship or even a good relationship. My point is that even though they are young and they are inexperienced they can still be just as in love with someone as any adult.


So, in this debate, you want to prove that these exceptionsof true love exist (which they obviously do!)?
That most certainly makes it harder for me. I'll just reply to your statements now.

That teenagers could overcome this selfishness is obviously true, but again, exceptional. The selfishness is within the human nature, humans are born living for self-interest and personal benefit. It is through reason that we know cheating is wrong (some at least, others just chase their dreams freely). The self-sacrificing element is a tough one to describe, as this basically means the person means more to you than your own life. I'll give it a try explaining this.
Loving is always in a certain degree, for your own benefit. Some people will find this person so important, that they will really find their own life pointless without them. It is then, that they would decide to die for them.
But in most cases, it is through reason that people decide that dying for love is the best thing to do. They try to be the ideal lover as they can picture it in their head, but in their heart, that is not the case: they would choose to live. The more realistic example is when your boyfriend would die, would you move on? If the answer is yes, then you are part of the second category. If the answer is no, you are a part of the first category.
On the general case of teenagers, the main selfishness still counts, so i believe the majority of them would move on.

> "The majority of the people I know who are now married are still with their high school sweetheart, and in one case, middle school."

Very interesting argument, since research has proven that most people indeed marry someone they have known from under the age of 16. Whether they have always had feelings for them, is uncertain. But you most certainly come from a different region than i do, because most girls here (Belgium) have had an average of 2-3 lovers throughout high school. Let alone the many girls who are currently "f*cking around" in university. I find this sad, as i would rather have a society like the one you described. But i must ask a question about that: Were they really together with only that one person? Have they never had the slightest desire for someone else? Most likely, they wouldn't tell you about this. But if they are for example a huge Justin Bieber fan, you can always ask them if they would have sex with him. If they say yes, then those teenagers don't take love serious. Ask them a direct question and they'll use reason to know that cheating is wrong and say that they wouldn't cheat.

> " You also mentioned sexual frustration. This is a barrier that every couple has to over come simply because evolution has made us this way. We are physically at our prime in our late teens to early twenties and so this topic is almost unavoidable when you choose to be close to someone. But I don't think sexual relations should be an indication of wether or not what someone feels is love. In the event that sex does occur it is my personal opinion that you should stay with that person. I also think that if you made the choice to sleep with someone then you should be 100% committed to that person."

The thing is, that I plead for the world before the sexual revolution. Yes, our prime is early, but we are not smart enough at that time to have certainty of your feelings. Every year you wait, is a year you'll know more and you'll be more certain of what is right and wrong. Nowadays, the mentality is that you should just date at early ages, and explore the world to its fullest: i disagree. The children lose the option of ever being able to say they were fully committed to just one person, as they will already have a past with others. It is a reality that the large majority of teenagers who sleep with someone, will later break up with them. Reality is not the ideal world you describe, where everyone is 100% committed; and that is why waiting is the best way to see what you really feel. Untill old enough, a teenager cannot be certain that his/her love is really the deepest love he/she will feel in his/her life. For that reason, teenagers should not act upon whatever they feel and wait, be it together or apart.

I hope I'm not offending you, because you really seem like a morally correct girl with great ideas. Personally, I'm pretty sure that if your boyfriend feels the same way you two will end up marrying and living your whole lives together. Hopefully other people will understand that too, that you 2 really are an exception and not the average uncertain teenagers.
On the other hand, me and my ex were once just as certain, but she as a person was still developping and turned into your typical sexual revolution girl, bragging about experiences and finding own happiness more important than each other.
Debate Round No. 3


You have made excellent points and since this is our last round I will finish with a simple closing statement. Teenagers can be in love. Is it fair that adults disqualify our feelings simply because we are young? Of course teenagers will break up and they might not last but that doesn't make their love any less than that of an adult. I'm not saying that all teenagers are in love or that adults don't know what love is, but what I'm trying to say is that teenagers have the right to say they are in love and not be laughed at. Teenagers have the same feelings as adult and we can feel love just the same.

Thank you for debating, you have been an excellent opponent.


revic forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Artamiel 5 years ago
Well i'm only 13 and I've done many things that involved kiss, sex love and many more. It is natural 4 teens to be in love. nothing is wrong for love unless the other mistreated the other. so it is a cool debate
Posted by iAm_GrKelly 6 years ago
Well, Im 14, and maybe its just because i AM one of the more attractive guys and all that, i do not believe in true teenage love. Ive dated hundreds of girls, and told most i loved them, as well as kissed dozens, sex, etc.
So, from my point of view, until the day you tie the knot, you cannot truly love because as a teen, there is always that other girl or guy, and most of the time us teens will cheat. This is my opinion. Tbh, I dont really know my true opinion of love with a girl because of the things ive done with females. But your guys opinions seem legit. This is a great debate.
Posted by sydbrouseee3 6 years ago
Teens can most definitely be in love. I have been in love with my boyfriend since I was 14, and we're still together after all this time. Honestly, I think people who don't believe that teens can be in love just never had the luck to feel it with somebody, and I feel bad for them. It's such a great feeling.
Posted by samanthafalk 6 years ago
I believe that teens can be in love. It shows their affection for others. It makes the teen in counter new decisions. It also shows that they can get more confidence and happiness by another person.
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