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  • I published this article

    我發表了一篇文章,

  • in the New York Times Modern Love column in January of this year.

    在今年一月的紐約時報的現代愛情觀專欄

  • "To Fall in Love With Anyone, Do This."

    "想跟任何人談戀愛,這麼做就對了."

  • And the article is about a psychological study

    這是篇有關心理學的研究,

  • designed to create romantic love in the laboratory,

    在實驗室裡設計如何創造出浪漫的愛情.

  • and my own experience trying the study myself

    而且我也親身嘗試,

  • one night last summer.

    就在去年某個晚上.

  • So the procedure is fairly simple:

    整個過程很簡單,

  • two strangers take turns asking each other 36 increasingly personal questions

    由兩個陌生人輪流互問36個漸趨隱私的問題,

  • and then they stare into each other's eyes

    然後他們凝視著彼此的眼睛,

  • without speaking for four minutes.

    四分鐘內都不再交談.

  • So here are a couple of sample questions.

    我在這兒舉出幾個問題範例:

  • Number 12: If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability,

    第12題:如果你明天醒來就能擁有一種特質或是能力,

  • what would it be?

    你會希望是什麼呢?

  • Number 28: When did you last cry in front of another person?

    第28題:上次你在別人面前哭是什麼時候?

  • By yourself?

    自己一個人哭呢?

  • As you can see, they really do get more personal as they go along.

    如你所見,這些問題的趨向愈來愈貼近個人私密.

  • Number 30, I really like this one:

    我喜歡第30題

  • Tell your partner what you like about them;

    告訴對方你喜歡他們什麼.

  • be very honest this time,

    但必須得誠實,

  • saying things you might not say to someone you just met.

    說出你平常對剛認識的人不大會說的話.

  • So when I first came across this study a few years earlier,

    話說當我早些年剛接觸這個研究時,

  • one detail really stuck out to me,

    有個小插曲讓我特別注意,

  • and that was the rumor that two of the participants

    傳說有兩位參與計劃的對象,

  • had gotten married six months later,

    在六個月後結婚了.

  • and they'd invited the entire lab to the ceremony.

    他們也邀請了整個實驗團隊去參加婚禮,

  • So I was of course very skeptical

    我當然覺得很質疑,

  • about this process of just manufacturing romantic love,

    因為這只不過是刻意製造浪漫愛情的手法.

  • but of course I was intrigued.

    然而,我也被此吸引住了.

  • And when I got the chance to try this study myself,

    當我獲得親身參與這項研究的機會,

  • with someone I knew but not particularly well,

    並且是跟一位認識但不熟的對象進行實驗,

  • I wasn't expecting to fall in love.

    我原不覺得會墜入情網.

  • But then we did, and --

    但是,我們真的相愛了,而且.....

  • (Laughter)

    (笑聲)

  • And I thought it made a good story, so I sent it to the Modern Love column

    而且我覺得是個很棒的故事,就把它寄給現代愛情觀專欄.

  • a few months later.

    幾個月後,

  • Now, this was published in January,

    現在,這篇故事在一月被刊登出來,

  • and now it is August,

    如今已到了八月,

  • so I'm guessing that some of you are probably wondering,

    我想你們當中有些人不禁猜測,

  • are we still together?

    我們還在一起嗎?

  • And the reason I think you might be wondering this

    而之所以認為你們會猜測,

  • is because I have been asked this question

    是因為我為了這件事,

  • again and again and again for the past seven months.

    在過去七個月當中,一再的被詢問,

  • And this question is really what I want to talk about today.

    所以今天我要好好談談這個問題.

  • But let's come back to it.

    不過讓我們先回歸到文章本身.

  • (Laughter)

    (笑聲)

  • So the week before the article came out,

    在文章出刊前這禮拜,

  • I was very nervous.

    我相當緊張,

  • I had been working on a book about love stories

    我過去一直在耕耘一本與愛相關的書,

  • for the past few years,

    寫了幾年時間了,

  • so I had gotten used to writing about my own experiences

    因此我很習慣於將過往的

  • with romantic love on my blog.

    浪漫情事寫在部落格中,

  • But a blog post might get a couple hundred views at the most,

    文章登在部落格,頂多只有數百筆瀏覽率,

  • and those were usually just my Facebook friends,

    那些瀏覽者也正是我臉書的朋友.

  • and I figured my article in the New York Times

    然而,我發現倘若文章登在紐約時報上,

  • would probably get a few thousand views.

    卻可能有幾千名讀者,

  • And that felt like a lot of attention

    不但感覺被眾人關注,

  • on a relatively new relationship.

    且是個新建立的族群關係.

  • But as it turned out, I had no idea.

    不過最後的發展卻令我不知所措.

  • So the article was published online

    接著文章被刊在網路上,

  • on a Friday evening,

    是個週五晚上,

  • and by Saturday, this had happened to the traffic on my blog.

    到週六,我的部落格已經嚴重塞車,

  • And by Sunday, both the Today Show and Good Morning America had called.

    到週日時,今日秀和早安美國兩個節目都打電話給我,

  • Within a month, the article would receive over 8 million views,

    在一個月內,文章已被瀏覽超過八百萬次,

  • and I was, to say the least,

    我當時,就算保守的說吧,

  • underprepared for this sort of attention.

    也完全沒心理準備會被如此大肆關注.

  • It's one thing to work up the confidence to write honestly

    要如實詳述須得鼓起極大自信,

  • about your experiences with love,

    何況又是關於愛的經歷.

  • but it is another thing to discover

    另外還發現件事,

  • that your love life has made international news --

    你的愛情生活全成了國際新聞.

  • (Laughter)

    (笑聲)

  • and to realize that people across the world

    開始意識到全世界的人,

  • are genuinely invested in the status of your new relationship.

    都全心全意投入在你最新的愛情發展中,

  • (Laughter)

    (笑聲)

  • And when people called or emailed, which they did every day for weeks,

    連著幾週,無論打電話或用電郵,每天都有人這麼做,

  • they always asked the same question first:

    他們總是先問同一個問題:

  • are you guys still together?

    你們還在一起嗎?

  • In fact, as I was preparing this talk,

    事實上,當我在準備這場演講時,

  • I did a quick search of my email inbox

    我很快速地在電郵信箱裡搜尋一下,

  • for the phrase "Are you still together?"

    搜尋字串"你們還在一起嗎?"

  • and several messages popped up immediately.

    有幾個訊息馬上跳出來.

  • They were from students and journalists

    來自於學生和記者們,

  • and friendly strangers like this one.

    還有友善的陌生人就像這位.

  • I did radio interviews and they asked.

    我在電台接受訪問時他們也問.

  • I even gave a talk, and one woman shouted up to the stage,

    甚至在演講時,一位女士對著講台大聲吼道:

  • "Hey Mandy, where's your boyfriend?"

    "嗨,曼蒂,妳男朋友在哪裡呀?"

  • And I promptly turned bright red.

    我馬上羞紅了臉,

  • I understand that this is part of the deal.

    我明白這是無法分割的附加條件,

  • If you write about your relationship in an international newspaper,

    如果你選擇在國際性報紙寫出自己的愛情生活,

  • you should expect people to feel comfortable asking about it.

    你就得接受別人會自然而然的追問下去.

  • But I just wasn't prepared for the scope of the response.

    但是我還沒準備好要怎麼面對群眾們這審視般的反應.

  • The 36 questions seem to have taken on a life of their own.

    這36題似乎反映出人們自己的生活,

  • In fact, the New York Times published a follow-up article

    事實上,紐約時報刊登了一篇後續的文章

  • for Valentine's Day,

    在情人節時,

  • which featured readers' experiences of trying the study themselves,

    文章報導其他讀者親身嘗試此實驗,

  • with varying degrees of success.

    成敗結果不盡相同.

  • So my first impulse in the face of all of this attention

    因此當我承受萬眾矚目時的第一個衝動,

  • was to become very protective of my own relationship.

    就是變得非常保護自己的這段戀情.

  • I said no to every request for the two of us

    我拒絕外界提出的要求

  • to do a media appearance together.

    要我倆一起在媒體現身.

  • I turned down TV interviews,

    我拒絕了電視訪問,

  • and I said no to every request for photos of the two us.

    也不答應提供我倆的照片,

  • I think I was afraid that we would become

    我想是因為我們害怕將成為

  • inadvertent icons for the process of falling in love,

    不經意透過此途徑而相愛的指標性人物,

  • a position I did not at all feel qualified for.

    我自覺還不夠格擔任那角色,

  • And I get it:

    我也領悟到:

  • people didn't just want to know if the study worked,

    人們不僅想知道這個實驗有效與否,

  • they wanted to know if it really worked:

    他們更想知道到底會不會成功.

  • that is, if it was capable of producing love that would last,

    也就是說,是否這方法真能製造出持久的愛情,

  • not just a fling, but real love, sustainable love.

    非一時激情,乃是真愛,可長可久之愛,

  • But this was a question I didn't feel capable of answering.

    然而這已非我所能解答的問題了.

  • My own relationship was only a few months old,

    我的這段戀情到目前也才幾個月,

  • and I felt like people were asking the wrong question in the first place.

    我覺得大家一開始便問錯了問題,

  • What would knowing whether or not we were still together really tell them?

    就算知道我倆是否還在一起,對大家又有什麼意義呢?

  • If the answer was no,

    如果答案是否定的,

  • would it make the experience of doing these 36 questions

    難道會因此讓答完這36道題目

  • any less worthwhile?

    顯得比較沒有價值嗎?

  • Dr. Arthur Aron first wrote about these questions

    亞瑟亞倫博士是第一位將這些問題寫出

  • in this study here in 1997,

    在這份1997年的研究中,

  • and here, the researcher's goal was not to produce romantic love.

    在報告裡,這位研究員的目標並未設定在製造浪漫戀情,

  • Instead, they wanted to foster

    他們反而想要藉此培養出

  • interpersonal closeness among college students,

    大學生間的人際親密感,

  • by using what Aron called

    運用亞倫所謂的

  • "sustained, escalating, reciprocal, personalistic self-disclosure."

    可持續發展,擴大,互惠的自我人格揭露方式,

  • Sounds romantic, doesn't it?

    聽起來很浪漫是吧?

  • But the study did work.

    不過這研究確實奏效,

  • The participants did feel closer after doing it,

    參與者都感覺在之後更加親近了.

  • and several subsequent studies have also used Aron's fast friends protocol

    後繼又有幾個研究也採用亞倫的快速交友法則,

  • as a way to quickly create trust and intimacy between strangers.

    可以很快地使陌生人之間產生出信任和親密感.

  • They've used it between members of the police and members of community,

    他們已經在警察同仁和社區成員間使用此法,

  • and they've used it between people of opposing political ideologies.

    他們也將之運用於政治對立的意識形態者身上,

  • The original version of the story,

    這個故事的最初版本,

  • the one that I tried last summer,

    就是我在去年夏天所嘗試,

  • that pairs the personal questions with four minutes of eye contact,

    將私人問題與四分鐘眼神接觸相結合,

  • was referenced in this article,

    於文章中有提及,

  • but unfortunately it was never published.

    但很不幸地沒被刊登,

  • So a few months ago, I was giving a talk

    因此我在幾個月後辦的一場演講,

  • at a small liberal arts college,

    在一所小型自由藝術學院,

  • and a student came up to me afterwards

    有位學生會後來找我,

  • and he said, kind of shyly,

    他略帶羞稔的說,

  • "So, I tried your study, and it didn't work."

    "呃,我試了你的方法,但是不管用"

  • He seemed a little mystified by this.

    他似乎有點迷惑,

  • "You mean, you didn't fall in love with the person you did it with?" I asked.

    "你是說,你沒愛上對方是嗎?"我問他

  • "Well..." He paused.

    "嗯...."他停了一下

  • "I think she just wants to be friends."

    "我認為她只想做朋友"

  • "But did you become better friends?" I asked.

    "但是,你們是否因此成為更好的朋友呢?"我問他

  • "Did you feel like you got to really know each other after doing the study?"

    "你們是否在之後更加想要了解彼此呢?"

  • He nodded.

    他點點頭.

  • "So, then it worked," I said.

    "所以說有效囉"我說

  • I don't think this is the answer he was looking for.

    我想這不是他尋求的答案,

  • In fact, I don't think this is the answer that any of us are looking for

    事實上,我認為這也不是任何人所追尋的答案,

  • when it comes to love.

    就愛情而言.

  • I first came across this study

    我第一次接觸這個研究

  • when I was 29

    是在29歲的時候,

  • and I was going through a really difficult breakup.

    我那時正經歷了一場艱困的分手,

  • I had been in the relationship since I was 20,

    我20歲就開始跟一個人交往,

  • which was basically my entire adult life,

    基本上成年後,生活裏都只有他,

  • and he was my first real love,

    他是我真正的初戀,

  • and I had no idea how or if I could make a life without him.

    如果沒有他,我甚至不知該如何,或是否能夠 活下去,

  • So I turned to science.

    於是我求助於科學,

  • I researched everything I could find about the science of romantic love,

    我搜尋所有與浪漫之愛相關的學問.

  • and I think I was hoping that it might somehow inoculate me from heartache.

    我想,當時的我或許希望這是可醫治心痛的疫苗,

  • I don't know if I realized this at the time --

    不知道那時自己究竟瞭不瞭解,

  • I thought I was just doing research for this book I was writing --

    當時還以為只是為了寫書找找研究資料,

  • but it seems really obvious in retrospect.

    回想起來目的卻似乎如此明顯,

  • I hoped that if I armed myself with the knowledge of romantic love,

    我希望用浪漫愛情的知識把自己武裝起來,

  • I might never have to feel as terrible and lonely as I did then.

    這樣就不會覺得那麼悲慘孤單,

  • And all this knowledge has been useful in some ways.

    這些知識的確在某些方面有所幫助,

  • I am more patient with love. I am more relaxed.

    我對愛情比較寬容,也感覺釋懷了,

  • I am more confident about asking for what I want.

    更有自信追求真正想要的事物,

  • But I can also see myself more clearly,

    不過也因此更明確地認清自己,

  • and I can see that what I want is sometimes more

    知道自己有時想要更多,

  • than can reasonably be asked for.

    不僅僅是一般的要求,

  • What I want from love is a guarantee,

    我真正想從愛情上得到的,是一份保證,

  • not just that I am loved today

    不僅今天被愛,

  • and that I will be loved tomorrow,

    明天一樣還是被愛,

  • but that I will continue to be loved by the person I love indefinitely.

    一直被我所愛的人無止盡地愛著,

  • Maybe it's this possibility of a guarantee

    而探究這份保證的存在性,

  • that people were really asking about

    其實才是大家不斷追問

  • when they wanted to know if we were still together.

    是否我倆還在一起的真正動機,

  • So the story that the media told about the 36 questions

    媒體告訴群眾36個問題這篇故事,

  • was that there might be a shortcut to falling in love.

    透露出或許墜入情網是有捷徑的,

  • There might be a way to somehow mitigate some of the risk involved,

    也有方法降低可能要冒的風險,

  • and this is a very appealing story,

    除此,這篇文章本就動人,

  • because falling in love feels amazing,

    因為墜入情網總令人驚喜,

  • but it's also terrifying.

    另一方面,也很嚇人的是,

  • The moment you admit to loving someone,

    當你承認愛上某人的同時,

  • you admit to having a lot to lose,

    你也允許了即將失去很多,

  • and it's true that these questions do provide a mechanism

    確實,這些問題提供了一些機制,

  • for getting to know someone quickly,

    可以很快地了解別人,

  • which is also a mechanism for being known,

    透過這機制,自己也得以被了解,

  • and I think this is the thing that most of us really want from love:

    我想這是絕大多數人對愛情的渴求:

  • to be known, to be seen, to be understood.

    被認識,被看見,被了解

  • But I think when it comes to love,

    然而一旦涉及愛情,

  • we are too willing to accept the short version of the story.

    我們太想聽到短篇故事的版本,

  • The version of the story that asks, "Are you still together?"

    短到只問"你們還在一起嗎?"

  • and is content with a yes or no answer.

    聽到"是"或"否"就滿意了,

  • So rather than that question,

    所以與其執著於這一點,

  • I would propose we ask some more difficult questions,

    我建議大家不如問些難點的問題,

  • questions like:

    問題像是:

  • How do you decide who deserves your love

    你怎麼決定誰值得愛呢?

  • and who does not?

    那誰又不值得愛?

  • How do you stay in love when things get difficult,

    感情發生難題時,該如何維繫關係呢?

  • and how do you know when to just cut and run?

    什麼時候該割捨並毅然離去?

  • How do you live with the doubt

    該怎麼處理感情裏的疑慮

  • that inevitably creeps into every relationship,

    常冷不防地滲透進親密關係?

  • or even harder,

    或更甚者,

  • how do you live with your partner's doubt?

    你的另一半對你產生懷疑時該怎麼辦?

  • I don't necessarily know the answers to these questions,

    我也不盡然能夠回答這些疑惑,

  • but I think they're an important start at having a more thoughtful conversation

    但是我知道這些問題能夠引出更有深度的對話,

  • about what it means to love someone.

    就如何相愛的層面來賦予實質意義.

  • So, if you want it,

    假如你想知道,

  • the short version of the story of my relationship is this:

    我目前戀情的短篇版本是這樣的:

  • a year ago, an acquaintance and I did a study

    一年前,我和一位交情尚淺的舊識一起做了實驗,

  • designed to create romantic love,

    用設計好的方案來創造浪漫愛情,

  • and we fell in love,

    我們真的相愛了,

  • and we are still together,

    直到現在還在一起,

  • and I am so glad.

    我很開心,

  • But falling in love is not the same thing as staying in love.

    不過相愛容易相處難,

  • Falling in love is the easy part.

    相愛很簡單,

  • So at the end of my article, I wrote, "Love didn't happen to us.

    在我文章最後寫道"愛情並非憑空而來,

  • We're in love because we each made the choice to be."

    乃因我們自己選擇要愛上彼此."

  • And I cringe a little when I read that now,

    當我再讀到上面的話,不禁有點膽怯,

  • not because it isn't true,

    非因其言不實,

  • but because at the time, I really hadn't considered

    只是在當時確實未曾多加考慮過,

  • everything that was contained in that choice.

    那個決定所將附帶而來的一切事情,

  • I didn't consider how many times we would each have to make that choice,

    我沒想過,我們各自都須一再地被質問而重做決定,

  • and how many times I will continue to have to make that choice

    未來可能還是得繼續不斷地被問並做出選擇.

  • without knowing whether or not he will always choose me.

    不曉得他是否總會選擇繼續和我走下去,

  • I want it to be enough to have asked and answered 36 questions,

    我覺得被問並回答了36道題已足夠,

  • and to have chosen to love someone so generous and kind and fun

    我已選擇愛上如此大方善良又有趣的對象,

  • and to have broadcast that choice in the biggest newspaper in America.

    也將諸公告在全美最大報紙,

  • But what I have done instead is turn my relationship

    但是這一切作為卻讓我的戀情

  • into the kind of myth I don't quite believe in.

    變成連自己都快不相信的神話了.

  • And what I want, what perhaps I will spend my life wanting,

    我企盼,或許需用終生來企盼,

  • is for that myth to be true.

    但願神話成真,

  • I want the happy ending implied by the title to my article,

    如同我文章名稱所隱喻的幸福結局,

  • which is, incidentally,

    也就是,順便一提,

  • the only part of the article that I didn't actually write.

    我沒在文章裡寫出來的那部份,

  • (Laughter)

    (笑聲)

  • But what I have instead is the chance to make the choice to love someone,

    藉此讓我換來選擇愛上某人的機會,

  • and the hope that he will choose to love me back,

    也期待他會選擇一樣愛我,

  • and it is terrifying,

    有點讓人害怕,

  • but that's the deal with love.

    然而,這是愛的代價.