"The time you spent on a rose makes the rose important." - The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
For some time I believed in that quote but after 10 years I realized how lacking it was. From what i remember from grade school when we were required to read it, the books was somehow a metaphor for reality. So if the rose is a person then we rephrase it to this:
"The time you spent on (or with) a person makes the person important."
So now we see that it is not necessarily true. A rough example is a person placed in jail for life. This person will try to spend time with the other inmates without actually feeling that the others are important to him or her. Or a dysfunctional family. They could spend breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even go to church together but this does not mean that the parents. Or a private nurse that took care an aged patient because it's his or her job and might not develop any deep feeling for the patient even after many years. Or you might have experienced meeting someone and spending time with someone for only a few weeks but the person means the world to you and you love that person above everyone else. This is versus your friends who has been with you since kindergarten but with whom you do not really feel any love but since you like the familiar and you have no other drinking buddies.
I'm not saying Antoine is wrong. I just probably turned cynic.