These are hackneyed ideas, but they are worth repeating.
Young people fall in love too easily. When you are young hormones rush through your body. You feel the most intense emotions of your life, and since intense emotions strengthen memories, first loves stick in the brain. Young people meet someone on Grindr, have a couple of “dates”, and convince themselves that they have met Mr. Forever. They start fantasizing about joint bank accounts and extravagant nupitals. Lost in limerence, they ignore the red flags their partners are waving, and are deluded into thinking they have met The One. Then things don’t work out and their hearts break.
Older people do not fall in love easily enough. They may meet somebody on Grindr and feel a spark, but when that spark does not blaze into flame the way earlier relationships did they wonder what went wrong. But these later relationships are not fuelled by hormones or the novelty of first love, so why should we expect them to be as intense? More importantly, older people are wary. Older people grow set in their ways. They establish routines and patterns and become reluctant to uproot them. So they shy away from relationships that might capsize the boat. They have been hurt already, and who wants to repeat that? So older people protect themselves from vulnerability, which makes it more difficult to open up to potential partners, and curtails their chances of falling in love.
I wish young people had the perspective to understand that their first loves are probably not their final loves.
I wish older people had the courage to put themselves out in the world wholeheartedly, because even though older love might not be perfect, it still might be worthwhile.