What are some examples from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet that prove teenage love is not real?

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Tamara K. H. eNotes educator| Certified Educator

One of the best passages portraying the false realism of teenage love is the passage in which Romeo sees Juliet for the first time. At the Capulet's ball in Act 1, Scene 5, Romeo asks himself, "Did my heart love till now? Forswear it, sight! / For I ne're saw true beauty till this night" (I.v.54-55). In this passage, Romeo is equating feelings of love with an acknowledgement of beauty. Characteristic of a young man or teenage boy, Romeo has not yet learned that love can go deeper than just physical attraction. Hence, this passage shows us that teenage love is not real love, but shallow instead.

Another good passage that portrays the false realism, or shallowness, of teenage love is spoken by the friar. When Friar Laurence learns that Romeo has suddenly forgotten all his love for Rosaline and switched to loving Juliet, Friar Laurence declares,

Is Rosaline, that thou didst love so dear,
So soon forsaken? Young men's love then lies
Not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes. (II.iii.67-69)

In this passage, Friar Laurence is also pointing out that Romeo is merely equating love with physical attraction. Hence, this passage again shows us that teenage love is not the deepest, truest form of love, but shallow and unrealistic instead.

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Romeo and Juliet

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