Just this morning at about 11:30 am precise, I was working on a writing assignment.Before that I and partner came from an hour long workout from the gym and had our apple, milk and toast breakfast together. Seeing me neck deep into the work, the partner who was tying his shoelaces complained:
‘I will leave home in only 10 minutes, can’t you leave your work aside for sometimes? I want to spend time with you’
You can see how closer it can get. Mere 10 minutes of separateness can toss aside hours of intimacy that we spent as a couple, during gym, a goodnight’s sleep,and a mouth-watering breakfast. If this makes you think, he’s the one looking for breathless, space-less communion, you need to check his mobile’s call register, where every 2 hours you will find a call from me. Indeed this struggle for constant togetherness, a oneness is from both sides, his and mine.
But is this is what keeps the spark alive in our relationship? I do not agree. That what seems at surface and that what is believed and blatantly promoted on the pier of every intimate relationship. The eternal togetherness posited to a couple; our unflinching loyalty towards our spouse, the adorable pictures where the couple lovingly hold hands; gaze at each other; kiss, talk sweet nothings, and have a tight embrace. The saleable dream to have that one person, we want to live with; spend our life together; wake up and sleep together in the same house. A house where Mr & Mrs. Resides. Until one fine day, desire quietly sneaks its way out of that oneness. You do not desire your spouse anymore. Habit smothers the desire. Boredom creeps in. The beloved becomes an outrageous lie.
At the beginning of every relationship, boundaries are decided, rules are determined, said or unsaid. You cannot have close personal friends of opposite sex, you cannot plan vacations with a friend of opposite sex, you cannot tell lies, you have to be transparent, I should know all your passwords including your mobile, bank, and computer; I need to know where are you, with whom are you, and by when you will be back home. This monitoring, interrogation, and interruption looks like an enforced compliance rather than free-flowing expression of love.
Monogamy is a fast sinking ship in the sea of intimate relationships. It is less about love and more about our specialness. I’m the chosen one and others have been rejected. In a world, where we are separated from our parents, relatives, siblings; where the friendship is online, and where we have to compete at workplace with our equals, this dependency to become the invincible, the star in our partner’s life soars. It gives our ego a massage, our life a purpose. But in annihilating this psychological and physical barrier; this merging of bodies, lives, and souls, we start taking our partners for granted.
To bring in the lost desire back in our relationship, which monogamy has suctioned long time back, we ought to see our better-half as the other, not just a body made from flesh and bones, but as a complete erotic being, a full sexual being. This means our partner can have sexual desires, fantasies, thoughts, and inclinations that does not involve us. See, did it startle you? Mere thought of your partner being sexual to another person can make you shake, but it also brings back the magic in your erotically dead relationship. It reminds you that you do not own your partner and this feeling does not let you take your partner for granted and keeps you glued to him or her. Uncertainty begets desire.
I encountered this experience first hand, when I talked about my attraction to another man with my partner. Trust me, we cried, we fought, and we argued. And what followed post that fearful, distrustful, gut wrenching conversation was princely amount of love, and of course desire. For me the initiator, the fear of my partner leaving me acted as a stimulant and for my partner, the affirmation of me as the ‘mysterious’, the ‘secretive’ made me attractive.
Trust me, other is the hinge on which desire of a couple rests. Esther Perel, noted psychotherapist states that “The couples who negotiate sexual boundaries are no less committed than those who keep the gates closed. In fact it is their desire to make the relationship stronger that leads them to explore other models of long-term love”.
Love, that is not defined by sexual exclusivity but by the strength of emotional commitment. And if this still does not convince you, think of this. If you truly profess to love someone the most in your life, would you not open to give them what they want in their life? Even when it comes to having sex with the other person? If you scorn at the idea, is this emotion at work is jealousy or love?