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Thread: On Love (from Dot's blog)

  1. #1
    TJ TeresaJ's Avatar
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    On Love (from Dot's blog)

    I thought I'd start a new thread to give Dot some room.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dot View Post
    (blog content edited out)
    I can relate to this, and I'm heterosexual. On what could be the tail end of my current relationship (we could still bounce back) I'm relieved to find that, so far, I'm not losing my sense of self or self-worth. Not much, anyway. Motherhood might be a part of that. Instead of a man needing me as validation of my existence I have a baby needing me, and that is, if anything, a stronger focal point (speculation as to potential causes of single motherhood...).

    And I wanted to say maybe it's a "how women feel love" vs "how men feel love" but I don't think it's that either. Instead I think that there are just many different forms of love, and they tend to correlate with different relationships, but it's not set in stone.

    For example, thinking of my mother and my son, they both love me with this overflowing, abundant, unconditional love. Their love encompasses my personality, but it's also independent of my personality. They love me as I am because I happen to be this way, but they would love me just as much if I were some different way.

    Vs my boyfriend... I think that what struck me the most about him was the way that he loved me as I am - I mean, he seemed to really love the whole of me, the actual me, not because he had to and not because he loved the idea of me (as other men have done). But me. One hundred percent me, even in spite of himself when I was driving him insane.

    And then, subjectively, feelings of infatuation and then companionship... I can hardly speak for myself, because I have a very small sample size. I've only been in a few romantic relationships, and my love for my family... I dunno, I adore my baby, but I hardly know him. I mean his personality is just starting to develop.

    But to get back to romantic love, I have definitely experienced limerence (obsessive infatuation), although not with my current boyfriend. It was also a relief to not have that feeling when I was falling in love with him.

    There's a lot more that can be said, but I think I'll stop here.
    Last edited by Ptah; 02-16-2015 at 04:34 PM. Reason: blog content edited out (blog content should not be posted in a public thread)

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    libertine librarian sandwitch's Avatar
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    Something that I've been contemplating lately is aromanticism. I'm not sure how well I identify with it exactly, but recent experiences indicate that I may lean more homo-romantic than hetero-romantic on that particular axis. I like how the aromantic writings challenge all my social concepts of intimate relationships, and also validate aspects of my relationships with certain partners.
    I wanna see your goodreads, so add me.

  3. #3
    dormant jigglypuff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sandwitch View Post
    Something that I've been contemplating lately is aromanticism. I'm not sure how well I identify with it exactly, but recent experiences indicate that I may lean more homo-romantic than hetero-romantic on that particular axis. I like how the aromantic writings challenge all my social concepts of intimate relationships, and also validate aspects of my relationships with certain partners.
    wow, this is so not me. i am a love/sex addict.

    i experience very strong withdrawal even in a committed relationship when they have to leave for the night. it actually really pains me. this is how i know.

  4. #4
    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaJ View Post
    For example, thinking of my mother and my son, they both love me with this overflowing, abundant, unconditional love. Their love encompasses my personality, but it's also independent of my personality. They love me as I am because I happen to be this way, but they would love me just as much if I were some different way.
    I actually gave this some thought yesterday over a semi-drunk talk with a gf. The question started with "Why do some people feel depressed on Valentine's Day?" And my first answer is because they're missing someone, because you can't feel a lack unless you've had something you lost. So then my friend says that she doesn't miss any man in particular when she stops to think about it (despite having chronic problems with closure), but still feels lonely. Then we hypothesized that people have the (bad?) habit of attempting to project onto romantic partners a demand for that first, early contact with love, the unconditional, total love more typical of parents or grandparents, for example. Which is why they sort of spend their lives looking for more than what they'll usually find. They'll tend to think something is "missing" - whether it's that total security or the unjudging happiness you may feel with another person. In some way this early contact with love is the cornerstone of our sentimental education, and the way we love - or the love we seek - has a lot to do with it. I dunno, it's a nice theory that starts getting tricky when mommy and daddy issues enter the picture.
    Everything under heaven is in utter chaos; the situation is excellent. - Mao

  5. #5
    In sexually conducive relationships, love starts with testosterone/estrogen brain washes.. then moves onto a series of dopamine, serotonin, and adrenaline washes if enough chance is given, leaving you addicted and unable to think about much else other than your new drug of choice (your mate). Once your brain builds up a big tolerance for your drug of choice, oxytocin and vasopressin take over the bath water, giving you a cuddly sense of commitment to your drug. Oxytocin also plays a role in loving your new baby pooping and screaming machines, as well as that new kitten, puppy, or perhaps coke snorting tortoise.

    I think a lot of people feel like the old flame has died once the dopamine stops flowing and their love has to rely on the less intense hormone cocktails for a while. They're chasing the dragon from one relationship to the next, ever disappointed when the all consuming dopamine fix stops working on each consecutive relationship. I find that in a committed relationship, that dopamine eventually comes back for another go round if you're patient, then wanes again later. A roller coaster ride, only you didn't have to hunt down a new partner for the next fix and you never lost your puppy love. Even more interesting is that the act of obtaining an orgasm with your partner has a tendency to bolster the longer term hormones, so in essence, good sex is likely important in maintaining a good bond long term with your romantic partner.

    But aside from all that, I believe there's some less hormonal and more universal parts to the way I define love. A developed respect for the person for who they are, who they aspire to be, what role they play in your life and the world at large. Similarities in the way you think or believe. The brotherhood/sisterhood aspect of it. The amount of fun a person brings into your life vs the amount of pain and/or torment. The worst state to be in is one in which you've got all the chemical cocktails bolstering your love and commitment to someone, whilst at the same time losing respect for your partner who gives you more torment than fun.

    Personally, I've always been a rather romantically oriented individual, and over time I've really learned to appreciate the roller coaster.
    Quote Originally Posted by whatloveihave View Post
    I don't find you a potential threat to human society, you're not crazy. Feces.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Tetris Champion notdavidlynch's Avatar
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    The combinatorics of "love" is already too complicated, and then you throw in how things change over time and.. all we can do is talk about our own personal experiences unless we're working with very large samples of data.

    My experiences have all been very different. There's little to no consistency aside from partners being physically similar. I don't have much of a backbone when it comes to how I behave or what I expect from others.

    I don't manage new relationship energy (NRE) very well. It sort of destroys me, actually. Gf told me that she wanted to stretch our NRE out for as long as possible and that's like, the exact opposite of what I want. I want to indulge and get it out of the way as fast as possible so that I can see things a little more clearly, i.e. take the blinders off. If a relationship is something that's going to fizzle once the NRE is gone, then I'd rather it happen sooner rather than later. Also, as I said, I just don't manage the NRE very well. I'm an elated, happy camper with her but the highs are matched by lows when she's not around - I can get miserable and anxious like an addict (withdrawal). I didn't have this issue as much in previous relationship, probably because this one started and intensified much faster.

    Poly vs. mono - poly is definitely more challenging and a lot to wrap your head around. There's this notion in the poly community that poly is more natural, and that it's what people would do if they were free from societal conditioning, or whatever. I think they're mostly full of shit. It's far more complicated and stressful than monogamy, because it's basically nearly all the problems of monogamy multiplied by the number of branches in your tree structure. Even if you only have one partner, if that partner has another partner, then you'll have to indirectly (or maybe directly) deal with all that person's issues - no matter how hard someone might try to shield you from it.

    Also, IIRC the evidence points towards polygyny being the most natural state of affairs pre-agriculture, and I imagine those affairs were quite murderous. The more sex-positive, feminist oriented approach (which BTW is still steeped in a host of post-agricultural monogamous notions/ideals) is certainly not "natural". Regardless, whether it's "natural" or not shouldn't really mean anything (because it's an appeal to nature).

    I personally believe that most (cis-hetero) guys just want to kill each other and fuck as many girls as possible. A lot of us have been tamed by society and likely generations of selective pressures post-agricultural revolution, but the whole murder/fuck mentality is still present in nearly all of us to some degree, even if we never admit to it. Yes, every cishet guy on this forum has thought about killing/had the urge to kill another guy over a girl. If they deny it then they're a dipshit.

  7. #7
    Hasta Siempre Madrigal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by notdavidlynch View Post
    I don't manage new relationship energy (NRE) very well.
    For fuck's sake. Now they have a phrase for that too.
    Everything under heaven is in utter chaos; the situation is excellent. - Mao

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    Senior Member Tetris Champion notdavidlynch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Madrigal View Post
    For fuck's sake. Now they have a phrase for that too.
    It's a convenient acronym for the more detailed neuroscience/biopsychology explanation of what's going on.

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    a cantori Perdix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by notdavidlynch View Post
    It's a convenient acronym for the more detailed neuroscience/biopsychology explanation of what's going on.
    It's a pseudo-scientific acronym that doesn't specifically detail any neurobiological process, although it does connote it.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Tetris Champion notdavidlynch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    It's a pseudo-scientific acronym that doesn't specifically detail any neurobiological process, although it does connote it.
    You're not really saying anything different here.

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