My new guy and I sat face-to-face answering a series of increasingly personal questions. By question 27, he professed his love to me. No. This was way too much, way too soon. How'd we get into such a mess?
Two months earlier, my mom had sent me an article about falling in love with anyone (even a stranger) after answering a series of questions together, then staring into their eyes for four solid minutes without looking away. At the time I wasn't dating anyone, but saved the article just-in-case.
A month later, I took the leap onto match.com at a time when pretty much everything in my life was on a track I had chosen and I wasn't even that interested in dating (reverse psychology, but my thoughts were to put myself out there when I was least needy in order to attract the right, non-needy people).
Sure enough the 2nd person I met was all-in for the Lulu-Package. I saw signs of deep insecurity in him and even pulled back a few times letting him know that I thought he was more into me than I him. But he let me know that I would definitely come around (and I quote... "I can't wait for you to realize how good I am for you"). So we persisted. About 4 weeks in we threw all sheets to the wind and decided to do The Love Study.
Not shockingly, the study opens you up with some pretty intense questions that lead into intense conversation, connection and vulnerability. Additionally, I don't think most wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am bros would be like, "Ya babe, I def. wanna do a love study with you for 2-3 hours. sweetnezz." So by agreeing to take the test both parties are probably open to the idea of loving one another.
Most of the time I ignore the emotional and tender side of myself and so it was a great surprise to both of us when I burst out in tears to question 26, complete this sentence: “I wish I had someone with whom I could share ... “. My answer was olive's death. my 9 year old bulldog. How apropos that the next question read If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please share what would be important for him or her to know. To which he answered "I love you..." (I returned the sentiment because you kinda have to at that point and also I was feeling all of the feels, ugh).
Amazingly, I think the true outcome of the test was me falling more in love with me. (narcissistic applause ensues.) But you know what? I had to let Olive go in June (1 month after I ended things with stage-27-clinger, more stories on that to follow), and I had one of my very best girlfriends in the world by my side, holding my hand, crying right along with me. I think the love study works, but not like you'd expect.