I think when my friend said “I don’t need to love it. I know it’s painful but it does the job. And the more I use it the more I like and see its benefits”. He meant: I know it’s not my favourite to work with and it’s not close to my heart (not a love from first sight) compare to other languages, but logically I need to work with it to get the job done.
For example, if i’m coughing and sick and need an effective medicine that works well, I would choose Buckley’s because I tried it before and I know it works. But wait, Buckley’s taste awful, it’s not a pleasurable medicine and I hate it!
Based on this I can say, while I -logically- knew that language/feature/framework/tool is good for me and I should utilized it, emotionally I disliked it (for no clear reason) and refused to give it a try.
My friend now loves his job and he is good at it, because logically he chose to.