'Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.
This is from Tennyson, In Memoriam, and for most of my life I assumed it referred to some sort of triangle, with the writer ending up as the loser in love. But I think in fact the rival was not a person but Death, who claimed someone who was a dear friend.
I don’t always like Tennyson’s poetry, but this couplet shows he was sometimes a genius, and this saying resonates with all love, everywhere, and for all time.