Love and Mythical Creatures

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HisLiquidTopazEyes
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Post by HisLiquidTopazEyes »

December

I agree with Twilightobsessive completely. Keep us deep in thought!

dsolo
Wandering Through Town
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Teen love

Post by dsolo »

Cheeky, of course Bella has serious self esteem issues. Before she ever arrives in Forks, she comments about not being able to make friends in such a small school, if she couldn't do it in a big school. She's shy, smart and clumsy and says she thinks she has a glitch in her brain because she doesn't relate well to people. Her mother is her best friend, but they still don't see things the same way. Bella is maturity is related more to her sense of responsibility. She is less mature emotionally because she seems not to have had any interest in boys prior to Edward. Her attraction/love for Edward overwhelms her. Their relationship is first love/teenage hormones/supernatural bonding and is much more intense than an average teenage first love. As for Bella wanting to become a vampire, I think her only hesitation is her parents. She has no strong ties to a normal life other than that. She cannot survive without Edward's physical presence, so what other choice does she have? She knows she has the option of Jacob, but that would always be a second best choice. Think about a mother who loses her first child, even is she has another child (or several children) her love and pain will never go away. She will remember the lost child at every milestone missed, every birthday, every holiday. She may hide it from everyone, but the pain will always be there. SM said that the loss that Bella felt in NM was that kind of loss.
Edward cannot love anyone else, ever. He can never get over Bella and has admitted that he won't try. He will follow her in death. Should Bella remain human knowing that Edward will die when she does? Bella has examined her options, and chosen the one that will cause her the least pain and Edward the least pain. She could have chosen Jacob, but there would always be the possibility that he would imprint on someone else. Another reason that she didn't choose Jacob is because she didn't feel it was fair to him. She loved him, but not as much as she loved Edward or as much as Jacob loved her. Should she marry him and leave that between them all their lives that he was her second choice because her first choice was unavailable. Every time she looked sad, he would wonder if she were thinking about Edward. Eventually, it would erode their love, the doubt on his part and the guilt on hers. Bella was right when she called herself damaged goods. Jacob is young and thinks that he could have convinced her, but he had no chance once Edward returned.
As for thinking about becoming a vampire, Bella has had to think about it. She's seen the Volturi and she's seen the newborns. She knows what lies ahead, and she's counting on Edward and the rest of the Cullens to rein her in. I do think she should wait a year or two to give her family time to adjust to her being off on her own, and to go to college for a little while as a human, but that's me. As for the whole situation, I agree with Carlisle, there is no choice.
I have to agree with December, it's not a sacrifice she's making, but a price she's paying..

Perfect Creature
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Post by Perfect Creature »

I think Bella is very mature for her age, a fact that Meyer portrays very well through her taking initiative and responsibilityof her house and her parents ( taking care of Renee and cooking for Charlie etc)

The whole marriage concept i feel is irrelevant , she only as reservations about that because of all the values of being married at a young age that her mother instilled in her. I'm sure all she's really looking for is some sort of acceptance from her mother and from her self of her situationa and that this is an exception to her rule of marrying young because she really has found the love of her life.

Now this next bit i say in the nicest way possible, but though Jacob has aged physically sometimes i do question he's maturity, obviously he doesn't have the wisedom that comes with age like Edward does but sometimes in Eclipse i feel like he failed to understand Bella's side of things and think about her, like what happened in the tent scene Edward understood the need for Bella to be happy even i that mean her being with someone else but Jacob didn't seem to, he just kept pushing her to make a decision.

Edward's ability to consider only Bella's feelings and want only the best for her even if that meant ultimately having to sacrifice being with her , i think that's the kind of true love no teenage crush can compare to.


That being sad i do think Jacob does love Bella of course in his own way, but he doesn't seem to realise like Edward he'll have to leave her someday if he does imprint on someone, i think dee down but he's not willing to face it, which he needs to do. He's love is born form the way only a first love can be, passiontely and without seeing any reason.

I do think that real love the one where you know all the risks and have given so much into does exist even in teenagers because we are all different and everything can change for that one person.
Twilight <3

"And so the Lion fell in love with the Lamb."

"I think she's having hysterics. Maybe you should slap her.
-Alice Cullen

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December
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Post by December »

This will be brief (can you believe it?) because I'm running out the door, but I wanted to gesture quickly towards something I hope to write more about later: that one of the complications about answering this question is that all three of these teenagers do quite a lot of maturing over the course of the three books. Even Edward.... Do I think Bella is ready at the end of Eclipse to make the choice she is making? Yes, I do. Do I think she was ready at the end of Twilight? I'm afraid I'm rather with Edward on this one. Of which more later....

For now, though, I just wanted to comment briefly about Jake. Perfect Creature wrote that "sometimes in Eclipse I feel like he failed to understand Bella's side of things and think about her, like what happened in the tent scene Edward understood the need for Bella to be happy even i that mean her being with someone else but Jacob didn't seem to, he just kept pushing her to make a decision....Edward's ability to consider only Bella's feelings and want only the best for her even if that meant ultimately having to sacrifice being with her , i think that's the kind of true love no teenage crush can compare to." For most of Eclipse this is quite true. But of course by the end of the book, we find Jake saying to Bella "I'm not going to cut you in half any more" (Ec p.598). That for him, like Edward, what matters most is that she be happy -- and he recognizes that that her happiness depends on being with Edward. He's even made the leap of being able to imagine still loving Bella even when she is no longer human and the girl he wants her to be. Jake has done a lot of growing up in the course of this series too....
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The.New.Cullen
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Post by The.New.Cullen »

Hmmm, this is a hard subject for me to try to explain...

Right now in Bella's "life" (remember, she's fictional), she could go and get married to Edward. She's at a point in her life where she is mature enough to make that kind of descision. she's had to keep her mother in check, try not to trip to her death, literaly, and be grown-up. She's probably more mature than most of us teens. she KNOWS the risk of being a vampire, she knows what she's commiting to. And she wants to be with Edward, her "drug of choice".

And Edward has had a LOT of time to think this over. And he really cares for Bella, no matter what. He wants her to be happy, TRULY happy with him, because he knows that, once she's turned, she's going to be commited to being a vampire, and to being with him 'till the end.He can be a bit stubborn about her turning, but it's only because he 1,000,000,000% loves her (sorry fangirls :wink: ).

Ok, I'm done. sorry if i sound stupid, but I don't really care.
[color=darkred]The newest Cullen vampire.
Bite me.[/color]
I CAN'T wait for Breaking Dawn!!!!!!!!!

I'm going to go to their wedding shower *evil grin* I will find you, Cullen.
[color=yellow]The best thing in life came at a cost.[/color]
[color=blue]Is it possible that the most beautiful flower can come from manure?[/color]

LindsAy
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Post by LindsAy »

December wrote:
Bella's love for her mythic true love is fictional: something so strong that it cannot exist in a rational world. No one like Edward is possible. None of our lovers, partners, husbands can ever be as perfect as Edward -- because Edward is a romantic fiction
Maybe in the end, we aren't going to be able to find proof that this love is worth the price that Bella will pay, because it's not something that can be demonstrated. And maybe it's a mistake to try, because the strength of that love is axiomatic. It's the premise on which the story stands (or falls). We can examine it here on the threads, and see how undersupported it is in places by the text. But as readers, we accept it, because that's what makes Twilight the story it is....
I think December may have it the nail on the head on why I am having such a hard time speculating this. :)

I do think that, for the number of reasons stated, Bella is mature for her age. But to me, her age and speculative maturity level is somewhat irrelevant here, other than the fact that maturity itself makes it easier to believe she is capable of making of such a decision. Because, whether you like it or loathe it, as December said, what we are being presented with here is an all consuming, out of this world devotional kind of love that does not exist in real life. So the fact that many teenagers (or adults) who marry later change their mind does not really matter. They can't be put on the same scale because this type of romantic love does not exist outside of the realm of fiction.

In regards to Bella's young age, I see a lot of "What if Bella is changed at 18, and then after being a vampire for a number of years she gets bored/misses being human/regrets changing for some reason?" thoughts around. And my instinctual thought is always the same - it doesn't matter what would happen because it just wouldn't. And now I know why I think that. Because if it did happen it would detract - or perhaps even entirely cancel - the theme in these novels about out of this world romantic love and the intense sacrifice that comes along with it.

Because the central focus of this series has been around Bella's decision to become a vampire. And each event gives further evidence to why she does love Edward enough to do this. She's grieved in a way that wasn't normal when Edward left her. She weighed the Other Option, Jacob, who was a symbol for an excellent human future and made the decision to be with Edward and change into a vampire anyway. For Bella to have major regrets on this decision, after all that buildup and "proof" of why her love for Edward is enough, would not be in line with the kind of love story it is. It would become another tale about the value of humanity, like Tuck Everlasting, which is not the direction we've been lead for three books.

So, if this is the story I think it is, Bella's age doesn't matter. We as the reader must assume she knows her feelings well enough to know she is making the right choice. SM once commented on the TUGPM thread that people can have different priorities at any age. So waiting for a few years won't make much difference if Bella and Edward's love is as strong as is presented to us. She would make the same choice anyway.
Can Jake really know he loves Bella, when he is only 16?

Going again how the relationships relate to themes again. :) The point of Bella/Jake, in my opinion, is to show a more human and natural relationship. He represents another kind of love and the other choice Bella could have had. It would cheapen The Choice that was made if it turned out Jake's love for Bella was shallow, frivolous, and not lasting. Therefore I think it's safe to assume he does love her for that reason alone, again, making age irrelevant.

It does seem naive of Jacob to think he will never love anyone but Bella, and that he will spend his whole life "waiting in the wings". Even Bella, who has the All Consuming type of love for Edward, knows she can be in love with others. And of course he could always imprint and have his perfect soul mate at any time. But I think it is more the desperate situation Jacob is in over Bella, being about to lose her to a vampire, rather than his age/maturity level that makes him refuse to see those other options he has.
do you think this is realistic for real-life teenagers?


Well...it depends on the teenagers involved and the situation they are in. Is it realistic for teenagers to get married at 18 just because they're in love? Well, sometimes and sometimes not. In real life, we don't get themes and plot directions and author preferences that ensure our happy endings. It's best to err on the side of caution. But either way, if people are making decisions about love too young, at least becoming a vampire is not an option. ;)
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the_forbidden_fruit
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Post by the_forbidden_fruit »

Well what a topic! First off, you have to consider these are not your average teenagers- You have Edward who has 107 years of knowledge about this world yet he is is many ways he can still be considered a teen (discovering love, and human instincts for the first time). And Jacob who I think is very mature for his age (not as much as Bella) but he is still 16 and therefore more capable of making mistakes in relationships (aren't we all?) Anyways then there's Bella who is emotionally mature and considered an "old soul" like Edward. But there are many experiences she's been through that have made her stronger and wiser. How many of us can say we lost a soulmate, been in countless near-death experiences, and had to deal with lying to parents and friends about a huge life-changing secret. Personally I haven't, but this coupled with how mature Bella is makes her eligible to make these life and death descisions. As far as being able to make a descision about marriage and giving up her humanity, she's smart, mature and has been through enough to know what she truly wants. I think she's so afraid of marriage because of her parents bad history and the fact that she's been raised to avoid marriage till the right age Edward is certainly eligible he is very wise although lacking romantic history he is a good person and he does make mistakes (new moon) but when you look into them you realize his motives were reasonable. Which proves that he is not a bad descision maker (and already 107 yrs. old). He know he wants Bella and there's no going back. Now we have dear Jacob who has just fell in love for the first time and is head over heels. He has cared for is father and seems a little more mature than the average 16 year old. I think he can make these descisions but, he is only just 16 lacking almost two years of experience compared to Bella. You also have to consider the person's personality. Jacob sticks with his descisions and is straight forward most of the time. So when he knew he was in love with Bella he was sure. Too sure, I'm sure he loved her (he's old enough to know) however Bella andEdward aren't just in love. They truly are soulmates, destined to have each other. Jacob may have mistaken his love for Bella for something more.

Bottom Line: Love is not logical. Bella and Edward are mature enough to make these descisions. Jacob is too confident about his feelings for Bella. Overall when it comes to things like this it's not about how long you've been on earth, it's about being mature and emotionally stable in order to make the descisions. This situation is not realistic for real-life teenagers because most of us aren't faced with problems like this or mature enough to handle the pressure, but I do believe there are some people out there who could. I personally believe love has no age requirement.
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it:
for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

Genesis 2:17

December
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Post by December »

What a great discussion. It seems like we've only just begun to explore lots of issues raised by this week's topic. What it means to become a vampire in Stephenie's story. What Bella's attitude to marriage tells us about her readiness to become a vampire. How we think about the relationship between fiction and real life. What we're meant to think about immortality. And lots more. Time to move on to our next topic, but I'm sure these issues will come up again and again.

In the meantime, what can we conclude about this week's question? As with any good debate topic, our conclusion seems to be a resounding Yes and No. Some of us think one thing, some think another, and most of us probably think a bit of both: Jake and Bella are more mature than most teenagers, but perhaps not as mature as they think they are at the beginning of the story. On the other hand, they've both grown up a lot over the three books. As for real life, most teenagers are not ready to make the life-altering decisions that Bella is making, but it does happen. Yes and No....

On to our next topic: Was Edward an idiot to leave Bella in NM?
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