A very common romantic trope is to take two people who initially don’t like each other and to make them fall in love with each other. It’s a fun trope, and if done well, can be truly romantic. But, lately, I’ve been reading about arguing couples and instead of feeling happy they their getting together in the end, I’ve felt worried. They argued too much. They criticized too much. And I wonder if they’re really supposed to be a couple. Here are some things authors should be mindful of:
1. They cannot still be arguing and you’re up to 85% on your kindle. They simply can’t. Otherwise, you don’t have love at the end, you have the beginnings of a potential dating relationship.
2. There must be respect. If at any point in the arguing one person does something that fails to respect the other, it’s a bit of a turnoff. Now I’m wondering what the draw is. Why are so attracted to this person who doesn’t respect you (or your job)?
3.If it’s a Christian book, I began to doubt the seriousness of their faith. If someone drives you that crazy, just walk away, do not engage. Not if they’re going to start making you sound ridiculous and act outside the tenets of your faith.
Is that to say that I’ve never found a book to be romantic in spite of the fact that the couple argued? No, there is actually one that I liked but their arguments came down to cultural differences, and so it felt believable (and the guy would do just about anything for the girl and vice versa). But generally, when couples argue in romance novels it comes down to who is in charge and so I find it a bit off-putting.