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Old 05-11-2016, 09:59 PM
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Default Casual love--YES, PLEASE.

This. This, this, this, THIS.

http://blog.carsieblanton.com/post/8...32/casual-love

^^^
I want to do like a standing ovation for this blog post, but I'm at work and my coworkers would look at me very strangely if I did.

My whole life, I have felt this way. Why in the heck does someone assume I MEAN THINGS when I tell them that I love them?? Why is love scary? Why not just see it as the highest compliment a person can give you, even if you don't feel the same feels? What the heck is everyone making such a big deal about?

This page should be required reading, like at least as important as a condom, for any potential partner I have for the rest of my life. I may in fact (after donating money to the writer) print off copies (if she will give me permission) to hand out to any potential sex prospects or promising dates.
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Old 05-12-2016, 11:27 AM
icesong icesong is offline
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I have this linked in my OKC profile for exactly those reasons.
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Old 05-12-2016, 01:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by icesong View Post
I have this linked in my OKC profile for exactly those reasons.
Excellent idea. Should I find myself back out there looking, I'll do the same.
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Old 05-12-2016, 09:46 PM
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I don't think I get that blog post. A few of the arguments made me feel pretty icky. Can someone summarize? I think I'm missing something.
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Old 05-12-2016, 09:58 PM
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The blog post is saying that it should be ok to fall in love easily.

That being in love with someone, or loving someone, should not be taken so seriously. The whole attached questions one might ask such as:

-Does this person need me to love them back?
-Does this person need me to love only them?
-Does this person need me to love them FOREVER?
-Does this person expect us to move in together, get married, and/or make babies?

The way some people freak out over love and make it into this huge, life altering event, is not really me. You can be as solo-poly as I am (not going to live with anyone, marry anyone, or give anyone any more kids ever again as far as I know) and still have just as much love feelings for your partner(s) as someone who IS doing that stuff. One doesn't always have to do with the other.

I've been frustrated in the past when partners have freaked out because I told them that I loved them. Even when I carefully tried to explain that it isn't any kind of a trap, and I didn't even care if they loved me back or not. It should really be taken as a compliment, it just means, "I think you are Super Awesome Sauce! I totally enjoy time with you! Let's keep doing this for a while, huh?"

And I get angry when I'm told that just because I didn't wait some pre-determined period of time to feel something and admit I feel something, that my feelings are invalid, that it's "only" infatuation or NRE or limerance or some negligible and stupid and likely crazy thing. Why can't I just enjoy it??

What part of this bothered you, FeatherFool, if I may ask? (I has a curious.)
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Old 05-12-2016, 11:29 PM
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Absolutely feel free to ask! I love reasonable open-minded discussion.

Thank you for your summary; that really cleared a few questions up for me. I'm sorry that you had those experiences; no one should should try to make you feel like your emotions aren't valid.

However, I'd put forward that the idea that everyone should love easy and free, and not make too a big deal of it, is just as invalidating as saying that someone can only love if they have "put in the hours", to paraphrase. I feel like while the complimenter may have the best intentions, only the receiver can decide what they find complimentary or not.

Here is what I took away from the blog:

I understood much of this blog post to be saying that "love" should exclusively be defined as that feeling of twitterpation- tingly and exciting and breathtaking- but that it should not encompass commitment, which is proposed as a separate entity and likely not an emotion. This suggests to me that the author assumes that everyone should labour under the same definition of love, and in my experience that is a mistake. Emotional labels are notoriously difficult to pin down and they can't be expected to have a perfect universal definition. My idea of love does not match the authors', but that doesn't make either one wrong. They are just different. My definition of anger almost certainly would not match theirs, either. It's natural to assume that everyone is (or should be) working under the same set of rules as you are but that is not always, or even often, the case.

If someone told me they loved me and I found that uncomfortable, or felt like it placed pressure on me, I don't think par for course that means I need to change my definition of love. It's mine, after all, and has nothing to do with how the other person chooses to label their emotions. This post seemed to suggest that reacting negatively to an expression of love was in itself undesirable and bad. I disagree with that. If one party has the right to express their love, as they define it, the other has equal right to how they feel about that expression. I felt like the author was saying you are obligated to accept someone's profession of love, and that just feels icky.

I also had a few issues with the argument that love can only be safely defined and accepted as This One True Way, and anything else would result in Disaster. That is all-or-nothing thinking, and eminently not true; plenty of people reserve the term love for the closest associations in their life, and plenty of them get along just fine. It also seems to suggest that This One True Way would entirely prevent misunderstanding and heartbreak, which I find very silly; it seems obvious to me that it won't. The misunderstandings and heartbreak would just occur slightly differently. I don't believe there are any One True Ways to love, and all kinds of emotion, however you define them for yourself, can lead to joy or pain depending on how you use them.

...Feel free to knock any/all of this down, however!
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Old 05-13-2016, 12:07 AM
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I think that the point the author is trying to make, or at least the bit that resonates so strongly with me, is that there need not BE one true way.

So if I fall in love like falling out of bed, and don't want to play coy until I'm sure my partner feels the same, and I say something...I don't see why it should be perceived as an attack. A scary or alarming thing. It would be fine with me if a partner said, "Hey, I appreciate that, but it takes me more time to feel that way, and frankly, I might not get there ever...but thanks."

My partners are allowed to feel (or not feel) whatever they want, and I'd like the same courtesy.

In all fairness though, I learned to disclaimer this up front before sex, ideally before a second date. I tell people that sometimes I love easily, and they shouldn't feel pressured or confined by this, it implies no further intention than a desire to continue to see them, if they are amenable. But that if they are bothered by such easy emotions, we probably aren't a good match. I am making a deliberate effort to avoid messing around with people who are emotionally distant, guarded, or unavailable. That sort of thing has worked out poorly for me in the past.

Frankly, I think that casual, emotionless sex is more risky than casual love. I'd rather love my friends than have sex with them all!
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Old 05-13-2016, 01:13 AM
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For me, the word love is fluid and can mean any number of things depending on the context. It doesn't necessarily mean, "commitment and a white picket fence," but it doesn't necessarily mean, "a warm compliment," either. The thing is that a lot of it depends on who's saying it. If someone told me they loved me, I would probably tend to err in the direction of not assuming too much about it. Although my heart rate might increase!
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Old 05-13-2016, 01:38 AM
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I can agree with the majority of what you say, for sure. I just didn't get that from the blog post, I suppose.

I think mismatches in "love style" can work, provisionally, with effort on both sides. I'm definitely slow to warm up, and Tails is a firecracker of affection. However, we'd known each other for several months before starting to date and that made it a lot easier for both of us, I think. Tails was slowed down a bit, and I had a chance to catch up. Now we can both enjoy NRE together! Noice.

I guess I just don't see one as being that different from the other. Quick-to-love risk that their partner will be scared off or never reach that level, and slow-to-love risk that their partner will get tired of them before their feelings can be fully realized or that they will be interpreted as "cold fish". That's not fun, let me tell you.
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Old 05-13-2016, 02:17 PM
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It is fascinating to me to hear different people share their perspectives on love.

FASCINATING.

I think that people with different love styles can definitely make it work, but I also think that people should, ethically, be more self aware (know what they want and what how they tend to behave, realistically, in love and relationships)...and be honest with others that they consider dating, and really HEAR their potential partners if such honesty is returned. Negotiate in good faith. I know it's a bit of a buzzkill when you meet someone new and great and just hope that they'll bend or you'll bend and you'll be everything that other person needs and vice versa, but this chaotic way of relating can cause a great deal of pain. And as Carsie Blanton says in another of her blogs, pain is pretty inevitable anyways for adults who are living and loving...it is part of the human experience, for sure. But I think that it is kind, to try and mitigate it somewhat by choosing honesty, particularly over deception, in the game of love.

So, my perspective is this. I recognize a prospect, and in sizing them up, I know immediately if...

-Sex might be fun, but I would not wish to relationship with this person.
-Would like to remain friends.
-Don't really like them much, think it might be fun to play once maybe.

-This is the sort of person I'm capable of falling stupid-in-love with. Just looking at them is like eating the sweetest candy, like basking in sunshine, like taking a wonderful drug. They are absolutely a fantastic lovely human and I want to eat them up.

-This person is very intriguing. I sense really interesting stuff veiled just under the surface. No immediate firecrackers, but if I let them in and they let me in, the result might be great. Worth taking a chance on probably.
(With this type, some point in additional interaction could set off the bonfire...and the most likely such event would be sex.)

Part of the reason I'm not a huge believer in forming permanent marriage type bonds, is that I have not had the experience of feeling a lot more "in love" with someone months or years into an intimate relationship, if I felt nothing or very little to start with. The only years-long relationship I ever had, was (on my part) full of obligation and family-feeling, there was love and caring from me but not of the romantic variety. He on the other hand was romantically in love with me from the beginning, and that never waned until the day I broke his heart...and that relationship was awful in a million ways that have nothing to do with this conversation. I think I was expected to have felt what he felt. The fact that I didn't, made me a bad wife. So I'm told.

Anyways.

I had the experience shortly after my marriage ended of falling for a man, and at first he seemed just as into me. I was excited. Two weeks in and we seemed equally enthusiastic about it. We had jumped right into sex immediately, and the sex was freaking GREAT. He seemed to feel the same way about that, too. I was certainly giving him an abundance of physical pleasure. Then I tried to express to him how happy I was to be enjoying what we had and were doing, that I loved him and at this time he was all I needed, but that did not imply that I was demanding anything from him. I told him that I would stop dating others, but was demanding no such thing of him, specifically. He recoiled, all in a couple of days, pushed me away, told me I was needy, clingy, crazy, and that I should go get my needs fulfilled elsewhere. He was happy being alone.

Wow.

This tanked my self esteem. The only conclusion I could draw is that he didn't like me and didn't want me around. I fussed about why this might be, for weeks. I finally gave up...especially after having not one, but several beautiful and brilliant and wonderful people validate that in fact, I am likeable, loveable, and deserving of their time.

I don't know what love might mean to that man. He wouldn't tell me what it was he wanted. Whatever it was, apparently it was not me, and that is ok.

Now I have a friend who is flirting outrageously with me. I like him. He might make a suitable and fun sex partner. I want however more than sex or intimacy, to keep our frienship in existence. I do not want to lose that. We got to talking about this love stuff. He said he spent most of his youth having casual relationships, he calls them "supernovas" where the sex and feeling are intense, but he makes a quick exit and never speaks to them again. He likes to preserve them in memory and have them END. I explained that this was exactly what I find to be hurtful and confusing, when partners do this. I don't understand why you would push away and shut out a person when you like them, or love them, or enjoy their company and their sex. No fight, no cooling of feelings...just a denial and an end, BECAUSE. To me, it means that you do not like me, love me, or want me around in your life. So I don't want to do that anymore. He says he settled down and is doing some relationships at this point in life because he was tired of being made to feel like a jerk for hurting people. But he wasn't really happy with it, and misses his old ways in the old days.

Well. I know that because of where he is in life, I would not relationship with him anyways. But I don't think it's a good idea at all to risk my emotional happiness by taking the risky action of having sex with this friend. I want to keep the friendship more. So even though he is attractive, and interesting, and I do see the appeal...I will continue to "flirt without intent" and keep him at a safe distance. I'm owning the fact that I don't like being made to feel the way he's likely to make me feel, and making my choices accordingly.

As for his love style....well, I don't understand it. But I won't call him a jerk for it, either. I do appreciate that he was at least honest about it, because many men would have lied just to get sex, in his position. That is far more normal.
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Spork 39 F
Zen Sadist late 50's, M - Sadomasochistic Top, Lover, Nesting Partner. My all around wonderful Man Person.

Analyst, Fire & Hefe My poly quad from August 2015 to July 2016. Still dear & loved friends.

Blood:
Ninja- 19, Son
Q- 17, Son

Old Wolf- Ex Husband
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