The great Audrey Hepburn once said “I was born with an enormous need for affections, and a terrible need to give it.”

For many of us, this quote rings oh so true. In a society in which it’s often discouraged to show your emotions, being the person who gets attached to crushes or someone they’ve just started dating is usually seen as a bad and needy thing. I’m here to tell you it’s ok.

Now first of all, getting attached and being clingy are two different things. Being attached does not mean you are texting them 24/7, blowing up their phones or demanding they spend every waking moment with you. It means that you care deeply for someone and value their presence in your life and would like to make them a part of your life.

I have always been the kind of person who values a genuine emotional connection with another human being. I’m the one who becomes attached too much, too soon, and I’ve slowly learned to love that about myself. We have all been hurt, we all have our demons, but it is easier to get through life by sharing these experiences with others who can be our support system.

I used to beat myself up for being the girl who always fell too hard and too fast for a new guy, who cared more than he did initially and when I realized it wasn’t going to work for being more upset than he was. Now, I just accept it. That’s the part of me that someone someday will love and appreciate. It could also be the part of me that allows someone else to find the strength to break down their walls and realize it actually isn’t easier to live without emotions. We are human, we have feelings, it is natural for us to feel – shutting those things off isn’t practical. I had a conversation with a guy I was dating and I knew from the day we met he had his walls way up and kept people at a distance, but the more I showed him I wasn’t leaving and that I cared the more I saw the real him – the walls were coming down and he was letting me in.

You might feel that you are the weaker one for being emotional and always getting hurt, but the truth is you are one of the strongest people out there. To be able to still care and not close yourself off from others is a huge accomplishment, especially in a society where it is so prevalent.

You show others that you are a true soul with much to offer in the way of emotional support and unconditional caring. We are all wary of those individuals who pretend to care but aren’t really there for you at the end of the day. You aren’t that type of person. In the long run, it’s going to be a great thing. After all, we all want to be with someone who will be there for us no matter what.

Stay true to who you are. Years down the road you might find that you reconnect with someone from your past who you wanted to be something more with but they just couldn’t offer that to you at the time. But they will remember how much you cared for them, that you were there no matter what. It is that reputation and legacy you want to leave with people. Your kindness and caring will leave an impression.

Semira Chan is a 22-year-old hopeless romantic and film studies graduate. She currently lives in Toronto, Canada but is dreaming of the L.A beaches and weather until she can actually move there. She has always enjoyed writing, especially creative writing and it’s her goal to write her own television series one day.

[Image via Paramount Pictures]