I’m going to go all high-school essay on this one and start by defining the terms. I know what is meant by ‘love’ in this context – a common romantic love – but as I am aromantic I will tease out the idea a little.
LOVE (abstract noun)
- an affection based on admiration, benevolence, or common interests.
- an enthusiasm, or devotion.
to LOVE (verb)
So although I have not had a romantic ‘love’ (noun) in the commonly accepted usage of the phrase, I have had many friends with which I have shared ‘deep affection’, ‘warmth’, ‘attachment’, ‘admiration’, and ‘devotion’ with.
- a love affair, especially an intense and happy but short-lived affair involving young people and/or unmarried people
- a love story especially in the form of a novel, treating love in an idealized or sentimental way
- something (a story, account, or explanation) that is extravagant, absurd, or fantastic and lacks basis in fact
To me romance is purely a literary device.