The 36 Questions That Are Said To Make You Fall In Love

Medically reviewed by Majesty Purvis, LCMHC
Updated February 21, 2024by BetterHelp Editorial Team

In the New York Times “Modern Love” section, Mandy Len Catron listed 36 questions that are alleged to make you fall in love with anyone, based on a psychological study by Arthur Aron. Mandy herself fell in love with a stranger using this method. The theory is that any two people can ask and answer 36 questions from the study while maintaining eye contact and falling in love when finished. This method can be good if you as a person still haven't solidified your relationship with someone, in which you're still left with unanswered questions such as "Does he love me?" or "Does she love me?"

Even though there are stories of couples falling in and out of love everywhere, taking a shot at love is still worth it. While it may sound too good to be true, some individuals may have found success. Here, we’ll be exploring those 36 questions and discussing their potential for sparking strong feelings between any two individuals.

How do I know if I’m falling in love?

The 36 questions theory

Falling in love may be complex because people tend to move at different speeds and intensities in their romantic relationships. The 36 questions theory suggests that any two individuals can fall in love simply by asking and answering a set of questions.

While this process might work for some people, it may not work for everyone. For instance, you may find that other methods of finding love are more valuable to you, which is also okay.

What are the 36 questions?

If you’d like to give the theory a chance, here is a list of 36 questions to ask and answer with another individual:

  1. Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
  2. Would you like to be famous? In what way?
  3. Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you will say? Why?
  4. What would constitute a “perfect” day for you?
  5. When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else?
  6. If you could live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?
  7. Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
  8. Name three things you and your partner appear to have in common.
  9. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
  10. If you could change anything about the way you were raised, what would it be?
  11. Take four minutes and tell your partner your life story in as much detail as possible.
  12. If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be?
  13. What would you want to know if a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future, or anything else?
  14. Is there something that you’ve dreamed of doing for a long time? Why haven’t you done it?
  15. What is the greatest accomplishment of your life?
  16. What do you value most in a friendship?
  17. What is your most treasured memory?
  18. What is your most terrible memory?
  19. If you knew that in one year you would die suddenly, would you change the way you live now? Why?
  20. What does friendship mean to you?
  21. What roles do love and affection play in your life?
  22. Alternate talking about something you consider a positive characteristic of your partner. Name a total of five items.
  23. How close and warm is your family? Do you feel your childhood was happier than most other people’s?
  24. How do you feel about your relationship with your mother?
  25. Make three factual “we” statements each. For instance, “We are both in this room feeling … “
  26. Complete this sentence: “I wish I had someone with whom I could speak … “
  27. If you were going to become a close friend with your partner, please express what would be vital for them to know.
  28. Tell your partner what you like about them; be very honest this time, saying things you might not say to someone you’ve just met.
  29. Tell your partner about an embarrassing moment in your life.
  30. When did you last cry in front of another person? By yourself?
  31. Tell your partner something that you like about them already.
  32. What, if anything, is too serious to joke about?
  33. If you were to die this evening with no opportunity to communicate with anyone, what would you most regret not having told someone? Why haven’t you told them yet?
  34. Your house, containing everything you own, catches fire. After saving your loved ones and pets, you can safely make a final dash to save any one item. What would it be? Why?
  35. Of all the people in your family, whose death would you find most disturbing? Why?
  36. Tell a personal problem and ask your partner’s advice on how they might handle it. Also, ask your partner to reflect on how you seem to feel about your chosen problem.

Why might the 36 questions lead to love?

Some of the 36 questions may be deeply personal and involve deep self-seclusion. They encourage you to open up and be vulnerable with the other person, even if they’re a stranger. The answers to these 36 questions may give you a clear picture of the other person, including who they are deep down and what’s important to them.

Asking and responding to these questions may not always lead to love, but they could potentially help you better understand and bond with someone uniquely. Love isn’t always logical, but that may not matter to two people who have fallen for one another.

How long do the 36 questions take?

Asking and answering the 36 questions can take a variable amount of time depending on the individuals involved. Some people may be more open and vulnerable than others, making the process longer. Those enjoying asking and answering the questions may also take more time to work through them.

Sometimes, conversations and other questions are spurred in the process. Finally, it can make a difference whether the two people are strangers or already have some level of familiarity with one another. There is not a necessarily right or wrong amount of time to spend asking and responding to the 36 questions.

Navigating love further with counseling

Falling in love may feel exciting but can also come with challenges. Sometimes, you’ll need the support of a professional to move forward. If you’re struggling with some aspect of your relationship, a qualified, licensed therapist may be able to offer you much-needed guidance.

Article Visual

How do I know if I’m falling in love?

Studies have shown that online therapy can help those having trouble in their close relationships, either individually or as a couple. One study published in the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Family Therapy concluded that online therapy effectively improves relationship functioning and individual mental health. Results of the study show that individuals reported less anxiety and depression and saw improvements (such as better communication) in their romantic relationships.

If you’re interested in trying counseling, you may seek help through platforms like BetterHelp for individuals or Regain for couples. From the comfort of your own home (or wherever you have Wi-Fi), you can interact with your therapist via voice call, text, live chat, or video call.

Below are counselor reviews from BetterHelp users experiencing obstacles in their romantic relationships.

Counselor reviews

“Lee has a great view on relationships and is truly great at noticing when you’re not being truthful with yourself. If you are having relationship issues or issues involved with relationships, she’s your gal.”

“Mark has been extremely attentive to everything that I say. He’s not only supported me but insight and encouragement to let me know I’m on a good path to self-improvement and discovery. Furthermore, Mark has provided me valuable insight into my romantic relationship, specifically with learning more about the relationship dynamics and how to build a stronger, healthier relationship.”


People may fall in love in unexpected ways. While you might not fall in love with someone by asking or answering these 36 questions, it can be a unique and fun exercise to get to know someone better. No matter the outcome is, this is a good step in taking a chance on love.

Healthy, safe relationships often thrive when they happen naturally. Allowing yourself to be known and getting to know others can help you move closer to finding the love you desire. Should you want extra support in learning how to be vulnerable, discussing love-related concerns, or understanding your own relationship patterns, consider contacting an empathetic and knowledgeable online therapist.

Receive compassionate guidance in love
The information on this page is not intended to be a substitution for diagnosis, treatment, or informed professional advice. You should not take any action or avoid taking any action without consulting with a qualified mental health professional. For more information, please read our terms of use.
Get the support you need from one of our therapistsGet started