The idea of love first developed when I was in class 5 and it was for a boy who broke my pencil box:
“My parents had a love marriage — my mum is a Christian and dad is a Hindu; but for me, the initial thoughts of love were sown in school. I was in class 5 and I remember a classmate (a boy) breaking my pencil box by mistake. It was an expensive one for those days and dad had paid 120 bucks for it which was a big deal. I was so upset that I told him he had to either buy the same one for me or repay that amount. He would forego his lunch and give me 10 bucks every day. Finally he paid it off and during the interim; we began speaking on a regular basis. He would even walk me home even thought it was quite a distance from school. His home was at the other end. We would hold hands and merrily chatter all the way till my gate. It was just two innocent kids who were great friends and had a lot of fondness for each other. But yes, for me it felt a lot like love. That boy was so nice to me and our relationship set the tone of my initial thoughts on love: it meant protection and companionship and of course a wonderful friendship. It was sweet, gentle and brimming with innocence.

My first heartbreak was in high school and it shattered me completely: In Class 10, I had my first boyfriend and my world revolved around him. But then he broke my heart and it shattered me completely. It was a horrible break-up that left me numb and I just couldn’t accept that it was all over. I guess when you experience a break-up at that age and it’s your first-ever real relationship, you don’t know how to cope with it. After that I don’t know what happened to me, but I ended up breaking a lot of hearts in the years to follow. That break-up had left a bitter taste and I felt cheated because I was so sincere in it. It was definitely not retaliation or a case of revenge; I think deep down, I wanted to save myself the agony of being dumped by them, so I would always dump them before they did so. In a way that felt redeeming but I know that wasn’t the answer to what I was feeling since that first heart break.

Chris, who I met while touring Europe, showed me that a man can be loving, honest and loyal: I met Chris while I was on a Euro tour in early 2019 and he was a gem of a person. He visited me in India and it was he showed me that men can be loyal, loving and honest. He treated me with a lot of grace and was extremely nice to me and we had a long-distance relationship for a while. But then Covid took over the world and we couldn’t see each other owing to travel restrictions and finally we decided to call it off mutually. But that relationship changed the bitter feeling I had about love and set the tone for the future. Today, I’m seeing someone else and he’s turned out to be a perfect gentleman.

My current boyfriend serenades me with songs and is a secure person who lets me be: We have known each other for a while and he’s been a great friend. We began dating a while ago and he’s been the best ever. He’s not from the industry because I don’t believe in dating anyone from the film fraternity.

I see couple who have been marriages for decades break up and relationships that were rock steady crumble. I am not one of those who dates someone and dumps them for convenience or out boredom. I may be 23 and considered to be modern, but deep down I’m rather old fashioned. I believe that one should be in a committed relationship and be faithful to that person. That’s how I am. That is also what I have learnt from my parents. My current boyfriend is all of that and more. He’s extremely secure as a person and just lets me be. In the field that I am in, trust is an important factor. He also is supportive of what I do and is his own person. I love that about him. This relationship has done me a lot of good and my parents like him too. I am a complete family girl. I want to be married and have lots of kids. And it will happen eventually. Yes, being in love is wonderful.