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jerryking : romantic_love   17

Opinion | How Love Changes - The New York Times
the most important aspect of relationships? People change! One might find the “perfect” soul mate today and a few years later, or even sooner, that person changes, becomes less sharing, turns into a slob, finds a love of gambling or no longer enjoys going to the flea market in Connecticut on Sundays.

Searching for the perfect lifelong mate is a noble goal, but a fool’s errand. During the 60 years that my wife and I have been married, we have both been several different people. Working through those changes is no guarantee of a forever relationship, but thinking that all you need to do is make a good first choice is foolish.
relationships  marriage  romantic_love  letters_to_the_editor  soul_mates 
november 2018 by jerryking
What Romantic Regime Are You In?
MARCH 7, 2017 | The New York Times | David Brooks.

In Russia, people tend to regard love as a sort of divine madness that descends from the heavens. Love is regarded... as “a destiny, a moral act and a value; it is irresistible, it requires sacrifice and implies suffering and pain....In America people tend to ask: Does a partner fulfill your needs? Do you feel comfortable asserting your rights in the relationship? Does your partner check the right boxes?

While Russians pursue a "Regime of Fate", Americans seek a "Regime of Choice".....The most important requirement for choice is not the availability of multiple options...but the existence of a savvy, sovereign chooser who is well aware of his needs and who acts on the basis of self-interest. Brooks sees those who have mastered the notion of lifelong commitment to belong to a third regime, one he calls the Regime of Covenants in which a covenant is not a choice, but a life-altering promise and all the binding the promise entails.....In the Regime of Covenants, making the right one-time selection is less important than the ongoing action to serve the relationship.

The Covenant people tend to have a “we” consciousness. The good of the relationship itself comes first and the needs of the partner are second and the individual needs are third. The covenant only works if each partner, as best as possible, puts the other’s needs above his or her own, with the understanding that the other will reciprocate....Covenant Regimes require a framework in which exit is not an easy option, in which you’re assured the other person’s love is not going away, and in which the only way to survive the crises is to go deeper into the relationship itself.

The final feature of a covenant is that the relationship is not just about itself; it serves some larger purpose. The obvious one in many cases is raising children. But the deeper one is transformation. People in such a covenant try to love the other in a way that brings out their loveliness. They hope that through this service they’ll become a slightly less selfish version of themselves.
romantic_love  David_Brooks  reciprocity  self-interest  serving_others  covenants  Russia  lifelong  marriage  relationships  commitments  sacrifice  transformational  parenting 
march 2017 by jerryking
Atul Gawande on Peter Gabriel’s ‘Solsbury Hill’ - WSJ
Aug. 23, 2016

Peter Gabriel’s “Solsbury Hill” over and over on my turntable.

I’d only just discovered the song, though it had come out six years earlier in the U.S. Gabriel wrote the song, at least partly, about a breakup of his own—leaving Genesis as the band’s lead singer. But the song isn’t some mopey ballad. It’s about enduring pain for the sake of something better.
Atul_Gawande  music  bouncing_back  romantic_love  '80s  breakups 
august 2016 by jerryking
Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person
MAY 28, 2016 | The New York Times | By ALAIN de BOTTON.

We all fear marrying the wrong person...Partly, it’s because we have many latent problems that emerge when we try to get close to others (we seem normal only to those who don’t know us very well. In a wiser, more self-aware society, a standard question on any early dinner date would be: “And how are you crazy?”)....The problem is that before marriage, we rarely delve into our complexities. ...Our partners are no more self-aware although we make a stab at trying to understand them....we seek a (false) sense that we’ve done our homework. We haven’t.....What matters in the marriage of feeling--romantic love--is that two people are drawn to each other by an overwhelming instinct and know in their hearts that it is right.....we believe ourselves to be seeking happiness in marriage, it isn’t that simple. What we really seek is familiarity — which may well complicate any plans we might have had for happiness. ...as grown-ups find ourselves rejecting certain candidates for marriage not because they are wrong but because they are too right — too balanced, mature, understanding and reliable — given that in our hearts, such rightness feels foreign. We marry the wrong people because we don’t associate being loved with feeling happy....We make mistakes, too, because we are so lonely. No one can be in an optimal frame of mind to choose a partner when remaining single feels unbearable.....Finally, we marry to make a nice feeling permanent. We imagine that marriage will help us to bottle the joy we felt when the thought of proposing first came to us....We marry to make joyful sensations permanent but fail to see that there is no solid connection between these feelings and the institution of marriage....The good news is that it doesn’t matter if we find we have married the wrong person. We mustn’t abandon him or her, only the founding "romantic love" idea upon which the Western understanding of marriage has been based the last 250 years: that a perfect being exists who can meet all our needs and satisfy our every yearning....swap the Romantic Love view for a tragic (and at points comedic) awareness that every human will frustrate, anger, annoy, madden and disappoint us — and we will (without any malice) do the same to them. There can be no end to our sense of emptiness and incompleteness. But none of this is unusual or grounds for divorce. Choosing whom to commit ourselves to is merely a case of identifying which particular variety of suffering we're willing to sign up for.

This philosophy of pessimism--thinking tragically--offers a solution to a lot of distress and agitation around marriage. It might sound odd, but pessimism relieves the excessive imaginative pressure that our romantic culture places upon marriage. The failure of one particular partner to save us from our grief and melancholy is not an argument against that person and no sign that a union deserves to fail or be upgraded.

The person who is best suited to us is not the person who shares our every taste (he or she doesn’t exist), but the person who can negotiate differences in taste intelligently — the person who is good at disagreement. Rather than some notional idea of perfect complementarity, it is the capacity to tolerate differences with generosity that is the true marker of the “not overly wrong” person.

Romantic Love has been unhelpful to us; it is a harsh philosophy. It has made a lot of what we go through in marriage seem exceptional and appalling. We end up lonely and convinced that our union, with its imperfections, is not “normal.” We should learn to accommodate ourselves to “wrongness,” striving always to adopt a more forgiving, humorous and kindly perspective on its multiple examples in ourselves and in our partners.
Communicating_&_Connecting  conflict_resolution  disagreements  disappointment  expectations  forgiveness  generosity  grace  humour  imperfections  intimacy  marriage  perspectives  pessimism  relationships  romantic_love  serving_others  thinking_tragically 
may 2016 by jerryking
Taking Risks in Love - NYTimes.com
FEB. 13, 2015 | NYT | Arthur Brooks.

If we want more love, we must conquer fear. We must take personal risks for big potential romantic rewards. Forget test-driving a relationship for 10 years, or searching for someone so perfectly matched as to resemble a sibling.

Love is supposed to be a little scary because it is uncertain. I remember moments when my own romantic venture seemed doomed and foolish. Courage means feeling the fear of rejection and loss but pursuing love anyway....The second thing love requires is mindfulness — pure focus, and total engagement in the current activity. “While washing the dishes,” the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh teaches, “one should only be washing the dishes.”

But mindfulness goes beyond the mundane; it is also the key to victory in the most audacious ventures. Emerging research shows that practicing mindfulness changes the structure of the brain in beneficial ways that make people more effective in business. Successful entrepreneurs have the uncanny ability to reside in the present moment even while working toward their goal. Lovers need the same mindful focus.
relationships  dating  marriage  courage  focus  personal_risk  romance  romantic_love  valentine  fear  mindfulness  seminal_moments 
february 2015 by jerryking
Beautiful advice from a divorced man after 16 years of marriage | love story from the male perspective
1. Never stop courting
Never stop dating. NEVER EVER take that woman for granted. When you asked her to marry you, you promised to be that man that would OWN HER HEART and to fiercely protect it.

This is the most important and sacred treasure you will ever be entrusted with. SHE CHOSE YOU. Never forget that, and NEVER GET LAZY in your love.


2. Protect your own heart
Just as you committed to being the protector of her heart, you must guard your own with the same vigilance. Love yourself fully, love the world openly, but there is a special place in your heart where no one must enter except for your wife.

Keep that space always ready to receive her and invite her in, and refuse to let anyone or anything else enter there.

3. Fall in love over and over again
You will constantly change. You’re not the same people you were when you got married, and in five years you will not be the same person you are today. Change will come, and in that you have to re-choose each other everyday.

SHE DOESN’T HAVE TO STAY WITH YOU, and if you don’t take care of her heart, she may give that heart to someone else or seal you out completely, and you may never be able to get it back. Always fight to win her love just as you did when you were courting her.

4. Always see the best in her
Focus only on what you love. What you focus on will expand. If you focus on what bugs you, all you will see is reasons to be bugged. If you focus on what you love, you can’t help but be consumed by love.

Focus to the point where you can no longer see anything but love, and you know without a doubt that you are the luckiest man on earth to be have this woman as your wife.

5. It’s not your job to change or fix her
Your job is to love her as she is with no expectation of her ever changing. And if she changes, love what she becomes, whether it’s what you wanted or not.

6. Take full accountability...
...For your own emotions: It’s not your wife’s job to make you happy, and she CAN’T make you sad. You are responsible for finding your own happiness, and through that your joy will spill over into your relationship and your love.



7. Never blame your wife if you...
get frustrated or angry at her, it is only because it is triggering something inside of YOU. They are YOUR emotions, and your responsibility. When you feel those feelings take time to get present and to look within and understand what it is inside of YOU that is asking to be healed.

You were attracted to this woman because she was the person best suited to trigger all of your childhood wounds in the most painful way so that you could heal them… when you heal yourself, you will no longer be triggered by her, and you will wonder why you ever were.

8. Allow your woman to just be
When she’s sad or upset, it’s not your job to fix it, it’s your job to HOLD HER and let her know it’s ok. Let her know that you hear her, and that she’s important and that you are that pillar on which she can always lean.

The feminine spirit is about change and emotion and like a storm her emotions will roll in and out, and as you remain strong and unjudging she will trust you and open her soul to you… DON’T RUN-AWAY WHEN SHE’S UPSET.

Stand present and strong and let her know you aren’t going anywhere. Listen to what she is really saying behind the words and emotion.

9. Be silly…
don’t take yourself so damn seriously. Laugh. And make her laugh. Laughter makes everything else easier.

10. Fill her soul everyday…
learn her love languages and the specific ways that she feels important and validated and CHERISHED. Ask her to create a list of 10 THINGS that make her feel loved and memorize those things and make it a priority everyday to make her feel like a queen.

11. Be present
Give her not only your time, but your focus, your attention and your soul. Do whatever it takes to clear your head so that when you are with her you are fully WITH HER. Treat her as you would your most valuable client. She is.



12. Be willing to take her sexually...
To carry her away in the power of your masculine presence, to consume her and devour her with your strength, and to penetrate her to the deepest levels of her soul. Let her melt into her feminine softness as she knows she can trust you fully.

13. Don’t be an idiot
And don’t be afraid of being one either. You will make mistakes and so will she. Try not to make too big of mistakes, and learn from the ones you do make. You’re not supposed to be perfect, just try to not be too stupid.

14. Give her space
The woman is so good at giving and giving, and sometimes she will need to be reminded to take time to nurture herself. Sometimes she will need to fly from your branches to go and find what feeds her soul, and if you give her that space she will come back with new songs to sing.

(Okay, getting a little too poetic here, but you get the point. Tell her to take time for herself, ESPECIALLY after you have kids. She needs that space to renew and get re-centered, and to find herself after she gets lost in serving you, the kids and the world.)

15. Be vulnerable…
You don’t have to have it all together. Be willing to share your fears and feelings, and quick to acknowledge your mistakes.

16. Be fully transparent
relationships  divorce  tips  marriage  romantic_love  living_in_the_moment  emotional_mastery 
august 2013 by jerryking
Why romantic love is overrated - The Globe and Mail
Margaret Wente | Columnist profile | E-mail
From Saturday's Globe and Mail
Published Saturday, Feb. 11, 2012
valentine  dating  relationships  marriage  Margaret_Wente  romantic_love  overrated 
february 2012 by jerryking
The Generous Marriage
December 8, 2011 | NYT | By TARA PARKER-POPE.

The role of generosity is becoming better understood...Generosity is defined as “the virtue of giving good things to one’s spouse freely and abundantly” — like simply making them coffee in the morning — and researchers quizzed men and women on how often they behaved generously toward their partners. How often did they express affection? How willing were they to forgive? [Brains, Beauty, Breeding + Generosity/ (graciousness = of good cheer/humour, forgiveness, and an ability to maintain a sense of proportion )]
relationships  marriage  Tara_Parker-Pope  intimacy  parenting  Communicating_&_Connecting  grace  serving_others  romantic_love  generosity  sense_of_proportion 
december 2011 by jerryking
The long and winding road
February 14, 2001| National Post | by Donna Laframboise.
"June Callwood, who herself has been married for 57 years, recently
declared in these pages that the perfect mate doesn't exist. Forget
about Prince Charming, she advises her grand-daughters. Instead, she
offers them a straightforward formula for romantic success. First, don't
expect your relationship to be friction-free, since it's unrealistic to
think two people will always agree on everything. Second, "discord over
trivia is not evidence of a mismatch," but proof you're in a perfectly
normal relationship in the real world. In other words, long-term
romances require more than starry-eyed pronouncements of undying
affection."
valentine  relationships  romantic_love  marriage  ksfs  long-term  expectations  in_the_real_world  marital_strife  soul_mates  imperfections 
october 2009 by jerryking
Thought du jour
January 16, 2004 | The London Observer | by Rachel Cooke. "When
it comes to relationships, it is best to assume that both sexes want
the same things (a little love, comfort and companionship, plus a few
good jokes) and that the rare exceptions who do not only go to prove the
rule. Convince yourself that the situation is otherwise -- that weird,
unfathomable stuff is going on inside your lover's head -- and you will
end up bawling at one another in the rude and undignified manner of
English tourists in a souk. Every conversation will be open to ceaseless
translation; every phone call and e-mail a minefield of
misapprehension. A relationship lived this way is not only exhausting;
it is boring, too."
relationships  rules_of_the_game  gender_relations  romantic_love  humour  Communicating_&_Connecting 
october 2009 by jerryking
Hold Me Tight
Jan/Feb 2009 | Psychology Today | By: Sue Johnson
psychology  relationships  health  men  women  romantic_love 
may 2009 by jerryking
Looking for Mr. Good Enough
06-05-2008 The Globe and Mail column by Hampson, Sarah.

Forget passion. According to the latest thinking in the dating world,
romantic love is a fantasy. Single women are being urged to be
strategic, and even draw on the time-tested principles of arranged
marriage.
relationships  romantic_love  dating  Sarah_Hampson  marriage  good_enough  soul_mates 
january 2009 by jerryking

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