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Defining Romantic -To Be or Not To Be

Updated on June 8, 2009
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Rebecca Graf is a seasoned writer with nearly a decade of experience and degrees in accounting, history, and creative writing.

Romance, What is That?

The dilemma since the beginning of time is not world peace or how to get along with your in-laws. It is discovering what it really means to be romantic. Yes, romance. That is the great unknown question. What is it? How do you know when it is needed?

Flowers Can't Do It Alone?

Most men would think that when a woman wants romance, she wants flowers and a box of candy. The aroma from the petals and the call of the irresistible chocolate should be enough to meet the romantic criteria. Sorry, guys. Defining romance is not so easy and all don’t fit in that cookie cutter mold. So, let’s discover what it really means .

The basic definition of romantic would be an act that pulls at the heartstrings of the other person. But….. What each man and woman has to remember is that each and every person is unique. Each one has different desires and interests. Therefore the basic definition cannot be interpreted the same for every person.

When I was dating my husband, I was at a loss at what to get him for Valentine’s Day. I figured it was easy to buy for a girl, but what does a guy consider romantic? I read magazines. I watched movies. I got NOTHING. Finally, I began to reason it all out. He was coming in for the weekend. We were going to a play with some friends. The next day he would be leaving. Why not go to the park after the play? Why not have a picnic? Why not have candles set throughout the gazebo and lay on blankets as we eat finger sandwiches? I didn’t know how he would react, but since I was putting so much into this would decide how much he really cared. Turned out that the picnic under the stars pulled at his heart strings. It met the definition of romantic. (He proposed that night.)

A friend of mine set up a midnight picnic with her fiancé and the guy didn’t enjoy it. Not romantic to him. Romantic to him would have been for her to go to a Monster Truck Rally and share his interests. Not everyone is the same.

Now, I could do another picnic for my husband and he would still consider it romantic, but if I REALLY want to pull at his heartstrings I would spend a day with him in a canoe fishing. He would be eating out of my hands after that. Me, I would be internally gagging as I was casting my line. I would rather be in a good book that fishing (which I do very well despite disliking the sport). But I know my husband and the more I get to know him the more I find that can pull at his heart strings.

What pulls at another person’s heart strings can be right on the surface or can be buried deep waiting on someone to get to know them well enough to find it. A walk on a beach could be it. A gift of their hobby could do it. Hiring a band to play their favorite song might be it. Cleaning the house might just do it. Yes, cleaning the house could just be the heart string puller.

I was watching a movie in which the man had bought his wife a vacuum cleaner. He thought that she would appreciate it. She on the other hand did not consider it romantic. She was looking for diamonds and mink. But, that is not what everyone wants. I’ll take the vacuum cleaner because that means he was actually paying attention to what I had been saying and admiring. What pulls my heart strings is different than hers. I’ll take him picking up his dirty clothes. If he wants me to throw myself on him and bat my eyes, all he has to do is do the dishes and wash the windows. I’m all his now. Though a moonlit walk in the park would not be turned down.

Don’t make assumptions on what someone considers romantic. Don’t think that the stereotypical flowers and chocolates is the only way to a woman’s heart (Notice that I said “only” because there are days that would do it for us all.). Learn who the person is and think of what would make their heart dance the love song and light up their eyes. Getting to know someone is the only way to discover the true meaning of romantic. (And if you are at a complete loss, ask their best friend, mother, and pet what does it for them. At that point desperation takes over.)


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    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 8 years ago

      Roses do nothing for me...and someone who remembers that is what I'd called romantic! :)

    • Dr Nancy Kenyon profile image

      Nancy Kenyon 8 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Well done! I like this Hub and I like you!

    • caoshub profile image

      caoshub 8 years ago from Portugal

      Loving someone (really loving) is beautifull!!

    • dianacharles profile image

      dianacharles 8 years ago from India

      Oh I'll take the long-stemmed roses and the diamonds and the chocolate.

      Kidding, only kidding.:)

      I think what most women want and men too, is understanding what makes us tick and to hear what we are saying and also what we are not saying.

      Lovely hub.