This month’s post comes from our first ever, but not the last, guest blogger. Enjoy!
Enemies to lovers, what an interesting trope!
It’s not your typical fluffy romance story. It’s not the kind of story that begins with soft words and sweet caresses. Him being a perfect gentleman, wooing the girl; her blushing while he kisses her hand oh-so-sweetly and swooning about how respectfully he treats her. Those kinds of romances ARE a sweet treat and gives me the feels. I love that mood.
But enemies to lovers—damn, can that be a whole other mood. One filled with heat. Intensity. Raw, animalistic urges. The other side of your emotional range that sometimes needs to be met.
These kinds of storylines are called “enemies to lovers” for a reason. They typically begin with two characters whose relationship begins with hate, one-sidedly OR reciprocated. He’s selfish, crass, morally ambiguous; she’s stubborn, opinionated, with black-and-white morals. They clash and fight and can’t stand each other. And eventually, all that emotion they throw at each other turns into something unexpectedly real and beautiful… and hot. 😉
So why do we like these stories? Why are we drawn to the darkness? Are they just a guilty pleasure or do we like people who are bad for us? Does liking it rough in bed mean we like being treated the same in everyday life?
This is a personal favorite trope of mine. One of my favorite fictional couples had this exact kind of love story. And I was asking myself these exact questions, plus this one: Was there maybe something wrong with me?
But then I read something that finally put it into perspective for me and answered my questions.
“People whose favorite trope is enemies-to-lovers are enticed by the idea of showing someone the worst parts of yourself first and still having them fall in love with you.”
When we fall in love with someone, they do eventually learn all the parts we have of ourselves, even the unsavory parts. The parts we’re not proud of, the parts we don’t like, the parts we try to change. And we do find people who love us in spite of them and a little bit because of them.
Enemies-to-lovers is like our love stories in reverse.
The fictional couple I mentioned? The exact kind I’m talking about. He’s established as the bad guy right off the bat. He’s cocky and selfish; he’s a complete ass who doesn’t care who he hurts along the way. And she is the definition of a good person: kind, caring, always does the right thing, and is willing to sacrifice herself if she needs to protect the people she cares about. Two embodiments of the extreme opposite sides of the spectrum. And I fell in love with him just like she did, and I was just as surprised as her.
For me, it wasn’t just the EXTREMELY hot chemistry they have—because trust me, it’s there. But it’s how they changed each other, how they were good for each other. She made him better, not just to her but as a person. He challenged her, surprised her, made her question things. And they ended up being the best thing that ever happened to each other.
What more could we ask for from a love story—or from life, really? What is more attractive than a person who changes your life, changes you for the better? That is why I no longer feel guilty about my pleasure in reading enemies-to-lovers tropes.
Guest blog, written by Taylor K.
What about you? Is enemies-to-lovers one of your favorite tropes too?
If not, what’s your favorite trope and why?
Any way you read,