Do You Need a Spark to Be in Love?

Movies focus on that magical spark, but a loving relationship can grow without one.
... Jupiterimages/Goodshoot/Getty Images

After a first date, your friends might ask if there was that all-important spark. While chemistry is what many people look for in a romantic partner, you may be surprised to find that love can happen without the initial spark. It's important to know when to give someone a chance and when to give up.

1 The Spark

That butterflies-in-your-stomach feeling is exciting and can be spurred by physical attraction. You may not be able to sleep because you are so infatuated with the guy that you can't get him out of your head. Those feelings could also be brought on by fantasies of who you think he is (not necessarily who he truly is), according to the blog post, "Fake vs. Real Love - A ‘Chemistry’ Lesson," on counselor Laura Schlessinger's website.

2 Beyond Chemistry

Some stress the importance of chemistry, but that may not be enough to sustain a true relationship. When you are in a long-term relationship, those initial feelings of excitement eventually die down. If you do not have more than a spark to fuel your relationship, it won't last. That chemistry could fade once the honeymoon period is over. At that point, you may realize that the person you idealized is not who you thought he was.

3 Second Chances

Because a spark is not enough to maintain a relationship, try giving the person a second chance if she ticks all the other boxes, said psychologist Laurie Betito, quoted in the article "No Spark? Give It Another Chance." Physical attraction may not develop until you know the person more. Betito stresses the importance of compatibility over chemistry. If you meet someone you get along with who has similar interests and moral beliefs, you will have a stable foundation for a long-term relationship. If the attraction and chemistry is strong but your family and life values differ, the relationship will fizzle as soon as the sparks die.

4 Don't Force It

While it is good to give love a chance to grow, if there is still no attraction after that second or third date, it is important to know when to move on. Schlessinger doesn't believe in trying to force an attraction if there isn't any. Romantic relationships require passion and it is unfair to both of you if your feelings are insincere.

Sarah Casimong is a Vancouver-based writer with a Bachelor's degree in journalism from Kwantlen Polytechnic University. She writes articles on relationships, entertainment and health. Her work can be found in the "Vancouver Observer", "Her Campus" and "Cave Magazine".