I’ll be honest, I’ve had a difficult time understanding what Yuu’s internal struggle was. The first thing I jumped to was internalized homophobia, in which she subconsciously stopped herself from acknowledging her feelings for Nanami. However as I went through more episodes that didn’t seem to be what was going on, or better yet there were other things interfering with her internal struggle as well.
It was the end of episode six that a few more things started clicking for me. Even though a lot of it had been things we’ve heard Yuu think before.
So while her internal struggle and/or thoughts on love were ones I found to be relatable, her decisions surrounding Nanami had always been strange to me. Allowing Nanami to kiss her and openly discuss her crush on her was a big factor into what made me think Yuu was struggling with some sort internalized homophobia in which she was afraid to let her feelings for Nanami to surface.
But this line really changes that for me. It’s not that she’s okay with Nanami’s feelings because she subconsciously reciprocates them, but because she wants to understand them.
This actually goes back to the first episode with Yuu sitting on her bed, listening to one of those cd novels (I think that’s what they are?), anyways, it was a romance one and she was trying to understand that feeling of being in love like the characters.
Time skip to the end of episode one and onward and now there’s a real-life person who is in love with her.
Once again, I’ll say how I originally thought this was her denying her feelings. It was throughout out other episodes, and episode six specifically, it became more clear that Yuu honestly didn’t understand how being in love felt. She’s trying to understand what true love even is. Of course she can’t reciprocate feelings she doesn’t she can’t grasp.
Earlier in the episode she says how she wants to fall in love in love with Nanami, but doesn’t think she can. Which is reinforced in this scene.
Then things get even more interesting.
Nanami wants Yuu to stay by her side despite her not returning her feelings, and vice versa. So why is it? Why do both of them want the other by their side? Yuu, who thinks she can’t fall in love but wants to learn what it’s like from Nanami. And Nanami, who has only shown her real, vulnerable persona to Yuu.
While they both care for the other and are both benefiting from their relationship, their feelings for the other are different. They’re on different levels.
Am I making sense? I feel like this isn’t making sense.
It’s just their relationship is really complex. The characters, their feelings, what they decide to do with those feelings. It’s all very complex and delicate.
Once again you see a conflict in their feelings. Nanami saying “don’t change” could go back to when she kissed Yuu in episode one after she said she didn’t see anyone as special (in other words, her). Nanami likes that Yuu can see her for her and not as the strong persona she has put on, she doesn’t want Yuu to see her as special.
Meanwhile, Yuu wants to fall in love with Nanami. She wants to be able to see someone as special. I think the two’s idea about special is different as well. Yuu’s is in the idea of true love, meaning she probably associates finding someone special the same as simply valuing them. Nanami’s thoughts of special seem to be more rooted in putting someone on a pedestal. It’s just another thing to show that the two are in very different places metaphorically speaking.
They’re in different places and yet they have a common emotion and reason for why they want to be by each other’s side. They are both lonely. Yuu who is lonely because she can’t comprehend feeling in love and Nanami because she’s hidden her true self in order to be more like her deceased sister. One has chosen to lock a part of herself away, while the other is constantly looking for a key, questioning if she even has something to unlock.
Nanami and Yuu can be interpreted in a lot of ways. I think that’s what makes them so difficult for me to understand. I did something most reviewers would avoid doing, looking at other’s opinions and thoughts on the show before I wrote out my own and turns out that Yuu is interpreted in a lot of ways.
Some people interpret her as being asexual. Some think she’s already in love with Nanami but has yet to understand what those feelings are. Some think she has yet to fall in love with her. I haven’t actually seen too many others interpret her actions or feelings as internalized homophobia which is understandable considering she doesn’t avoid Nanami or dislikes that she has a crush on her.
There’s more I want to talk about. I haven’t even gotten to Maki and Saeki, but I think I’ll hold off on talking about them for when I talk about this series as a whole.
Anyways, Bloom into You has a unique way of portraying unrequited love. With both parties being mutually happy to be at the other’s side even knowing their feelings aren’t the same. It’s not something you see too often.
~Consider this a Christmas gift before my end of the year post lol. I kind of wrote this on a whim so it might be a little sloppy. Sorry.~