The Empowerment of Latinx Love Stories: Emeraude Toubia on “With Love” and Navigating Real-Life Relationships

– “With Love” features a mostly Latine cast in a cross-generational romance, without the trauma. It follows a hopeless romantic lead, Lily, who learns to give herself the love she was trying to find in a romantic relationship.
– The unrealistic standards most Latinas are taught to aspire to are highlighted, including societal and cultural expectations pushed onto them. Lily and Emeraude Toubia (who played her) both express their personal lives bled into the show’s narrative.
– Toubia emphasizes that chemistry and connection are important in a romantic relationship but that compatibility is often overlooked. She is currently dating while not fixating on who will be her real-life Nick and believes in balancing communication, vulnerability, and rejection.

Full Story

Gloria Calderón Kellett’s show “With Love” premiered on Amazon Prime in December 2021, featuring a Latine cast in a cross-generational romantic setting, with Lily Diaz (played by Emeraude Toubia) as the lead. Unlike other rom-com series or films, the show portrays a beautiful and lighthearted love story, without any trauma. For many Latine women, Lily’s character is relatable, and for Toubia, it reflects her personal experiences.

Growing up, Toubia believed in the traditional expectations set by society, such as getting good grades, going to college, and being successful, but not “too successful” that men are pushed away. Growing up in a Latino family, there is an expectation to bow down to one’s significant other. Societal expectations are heightened further because of the pressure to get married, have kids, and live happily ever after. However, the unrealistic standard that Toubia set for herself did not fulfill her.

In season two of “With Love,” Lily comes to a similar realization when she breaks up with Santiago because they do not share the same view on marriage. Toubia believes that “We’re constantly seeking validation from our parents… [We] want to make sure they’re proud of us. So that’s kind of what she’s balancing and realizing.” Lily ultimately learns to give herself the love she was seeking from a romantic relationship.

In her personal life, Toubia is navigating dating at 30 years old. She believes that chemistry and connection with someone are essential but often overlooks compatibility. “I’ve dated many men that are perfect on paper, but they are just missing something that I want, right? And I feel that it’s necessary,” she says. Toubia also notes the importance of communication and vulnerability in relationships.

The show ends with Lily feeling empowered in her love life. Toubia also feels more empowered when it comes to her own romantic life. “Choose them every day,” Toubia says, emphasizing the importance of valuing a good and worthy partner. “With Love” teaches us about the choices we make in romantic relationships and how they shape our lives. It’s refreshing to see a show that includes Latine love stories and centers around joy, inclusivity, and the reality of romantic relationships.

In conclusion, “With Love” is a heartwarming show that portrays love in a beautiful, lighthearted way, featuring a relatable cast of Latine characters. It’s a show that can speak to viewers on a personal level and inspire them to make choices that will empower them in their love lives.