5 Things I Learned at the Closeup #FreeToLove #LoveRules Exhibit

Closeup pledges to advocate for the freedom to love in the most relevant ways anyone possibly can. Not just in words, but through art.

Art is a way of expressing beauty, emotions and feelings. Oh, and that includes the most beautiful feeling in the world. Love.

Now, how many exhibits talk about these feelings and emotions? Not so much, I guess.

With an inspiring desire for change, Closeup believes in fighting for a society where #LoveRules, as it recently held its exhibit through a panel discussion and different mediums of art.

Indeed, there is no better teacher than experience, and you will never gain more experience in a shorter amount of time than through art exhibits. There were four colorful murals created by graffiti artist Jappy Agoncillo featuring love in this modern age. Each mural highlighted a perceived barrier to relationships and I learned a great deal about how Filipino couples overcome these differences; age and cultural gaps, the stigma around online dating, the acceptance of same-sex relationships, etc.

Here are the things that I learned from attending this exhibit.

1. True love can start with one swipe.

I’ll begin with what I learned from personal experience. Twelve years ago, I met my husband online through Yahoo Messenger. That's why I'm not surprised when I meet couples who’ve found love and happiness through dating apps. In the many years we've stood for closeness, I’ve learnt that love happens in more ways than one, and finding your perfect match online is one of them.

2. In the face of adversity, two people in love can only get closer.

This is what I learned from the panel discussions led by the host Vicky Herrera, actress Andi Eigenmann, entrepreneur Issa Pressman, Radio DJ Katz Sato, and Fitness Enthusiast EG Bautista. They shared their struggles and stories about fighting for love, even in a society where love still has rules.

Andi talked about the reason why she decided to leave the pressures of Manila and showbiz and how she found her freedom to love in Siargao despite what everyone else expected of her.  Her story is one of the real stories that inspire others to love freely and fight for the freedom to love against all odds.

3. Don’t let the years hold you back.

One of the barriers to closeness include age gaps. Some celebrities like Hayden Kho and Beauty Gonzalez have found their match in partners more than 10 years older than them. They are living proof that age doesn't necessarily matter when it comes to love.

4. Love is love regardless of gender.

Gender is one of the barriers that hold people from experiencing true love. Some people even keep it a secret due to fear of discrimination, judgement or public shame. My brother is one of them. He's gay but I'm super proud of him. 

There was a time when he felt that he's not free to be with the person he's attracted to because of his fear of judgement of same-sex relationship. That's why I'm hoping that we can have a more accepting and respectful world. Where love has rules, I hope more people will take a stand and let love rule.

5. There is no wall high enough to keep love apart.

Some couples face issues, challenges, and resistance from society but they still choose to embrace their freedom to love. When you fight for love, it doesn't matter whether you win or lose. Because I know for sure, it is always worth the fight.

By bringing forward and highlighting these diverse stories in its #FreeToLove campaign, Closeup continues to empower everyone to get close and choose love.

Be a part of this campaign. Together, we can build a world that's free to love.

Learn more about Closeup’s Free To Love campaign by visiting their website: http://freetolove.closeup.ph/.

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