She doesn't mince words about how people today can be selfish and shallow.
María Eugenia Suevos is 103 years old, but her voice transmits a strength that transcends age. She’s the focus of the first Folksixty video, a project of Variopinto audiovisual productions, whose goal is to share stories that can inspire people to “take action, to be emotionally moved, or to reflect.”
In the video, which lasts less than three minutes (recorded in Spanish and subtitled in English), Suevos helps us to reflect on love. She speaks about true love, healthy love that isn’t selfish and inspires us to try and help each other be better, love that involves sacrifice and leads us to accept others just as they are.
Loving, according to Suevos, involves holding on to “the person you are marrying, a beautiful person … but just a man, with horrible imperfections, just as yours. No one is perfect.” This is why she advises us to “first admit your [spouse’s] flaws and do your best to help [him or her] deal with them.” Love means wanting to be with each other despite our limitations.
But Suevos says that nowadays “people aren’t very smart” because “people are selfish. They look to their own interests, and that’s it.” She talks about the fact that many relationships lack true love because “there is no heart, no sacrifice.”
She believes that people have an erroneous concept of what love is, and that’s what leads to dissatisfaction. “What people define as love isn’t love, it’s just wanting to take that lady to your bed. That isn’t love, it’s sex. And sex doesn’t last …”
Suevos gives an example of a situation which, in her opinion, happens a lot today, when a man says, “I’m leaving you for another woman because we’ve fallen in love.” “Look,” she answers to those who are in the situation, “Forget about these sentimental ‘loves!’” In short, she says, “Let them love each other, with their limitations.”
She also talks about the need for parents to love their children—sometimes with the “tough love” of teaching them right and wrong even when it’s hard—and about the need for every person to help others and accept help, both directly and through personal example.
Pope Francis has spoken often of the importance of listening to the wisdom older people, whose wisdom gained through experience is a treasure for new generations. This video gives us an opportunity to listen to the advice of a woman who has lived through more than a century of turbulent history and has the remarkable clarity of mind and energy to share it.