“New love can resemble mental illness, combining mania, dementia, and obsession that isolates individuals from friends and family and leads to unexpected actions.” The initial sentence of “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain” parallels the introductory lines of “Romeo and Juliet,” informing the reader about forthcoming events. The article explores how individuals recently engulfed in love may seem irrational to others, despite feeling more rational than ever before.
Both Romeo and Juliet go through the same situation. Characters such as the Friar are concerned about Romeo and Juliet because they are intelligent and rational, and they understand that Romeo and Juliet are rushing into a major error. In Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet,” the characters exhibit striking similarities to those mentioned in the New York Times article titled “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain.” The first similarity is that being dumped or rejected can actually intensify romantic love.
In “Romeo and Juliet,” the first instance of this is when Romeo falls in love with Rosalie and cannot stop thinking about her. “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain” explains that being dumped actually intensifies romantic love. This has three consequences for the Romeo and Juliet storyline. Firstly, it makes Romeo sad and even more infatuated with Rosalie. Secondly, it is because of Rosalie that Romeo and Juliet cross paths. If Benevolent had not convinced Romeo to attend the Capsules party with him, Romeo would have never encountered Juliet.
The third characteristic is that, despite Rosalie heightening his Romanticism, it does not matter. As soon as Romeo and Juliet meet, Romeo instantly falls in love with her, initiating their spiraling relationship that ultimately leads to their deaths. The second characteristic portrayed is their irrational decision making. Following the Capsule dance, Romeo goes to Gullet’s bedroom solely to observe her. Upon hearing her call his name, he impulsively steps forward and declares “here I am.” This sets off a sequence of nonsensical and ludicrous events that can only be attributed to the power of love.
It would be unfair to solely blame Romeo for their failures. As readers of both the article and the play, we can acknowledge that Romeo’s rejection and subsequent infatuation with Juliet can partially justify his actions. However, Juliet cannot use the same excuse for falling in love so quickly and behaving foolishly. Unlike Romeo, she was not recently rejected and is not in love. Instead, she is a naive thirteen-year-old girl who lacks understanding of her own emotions. She practically invites this situation by standing on her balcony and calling out Romeo’s name.
Any reasonable individual could have predicted that Romeo would be observing her since he is such a stalker. However, neither of them are mentally stable at this point due to being consumed by the intense passion of new love, as stated in the article. This causes them to make irrational decisions and act without sensibility. The final characteristic from “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain” that can be observed in Romeo and Juliet is that the desire for romantic love can overpower the instinct for self-preservation. This aspect is prominently displayed in Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet”.
The tragic love story reaches its perfect conclusion with both Romeo and Juliet taking their own lives. Upon arriving in Verona, Romeo’s worst fears are confirmed as he finds Juliet lifeless. Overwhelmed by his grief and inability to live without her, he makes the logical decision to end his own life. However, the situation worsens as it is revealed that Juliet is not truly dead; she had consumed a sleeping potion to be reunited with Romeo. Tragically, this vital message did not reach him and upon awakening, Juliet finds herself in an unimaginably heartbreaking predicament.
Romeo lies dead on the floor next to Juliet. Once again, she has no option but to take her own life as she cannot go on without him. This clearly shows Shakespeare’s remarkable insight as he addressed the main points of this article, written around 411 years after Romeo and Juliet was published. The qualities displayed by Romeo and Juliet in this timeless masterpiece, despite their brief acquaintance of three days, provide proof that Shakespeare was not only ahead of his time but also accurately depicted how intense love can deeply affect a person’s mind.
In his article titled “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain”, Benedict Carrey presents research that supports Shakespeare’s ideas. According to Carrey, experiencing a breakup can intensify romantic love, falling in love can lead to irrational decision making, and the love for someone can surpass the will to live. Ultimately, Carrey suggests that “Romeo and Juliet” shares similar themes with “Watching New Love as it Sears the Brain”.