Male, 58, Single (“all my life”)

*This is from a fellow blogger; you can check out his blog here.*

What does romantic love mean to you?

Romantic love for me has been a tragic illusion. It usually has a lot more to do with yourself than the object of your love. She triggers something within yourself which literally transforms your experience of everything in your life. It is as close to magic as we ever get. But it isn’t real. The more you get caught up in it the more tragic the consequences. At some point, romantic love must give way to genuine love if these consequences are to be avoided. Genuine love has an entirely different character than romantic love.

What is the difference between platonic love and romantic love?

Well, originally , platonic love referred to love between two men, but in it’s modern sense, platonic love is either somebody who is really romantically in love and doesn’t reveal this fact for fear of rejection and deceives himself into believing his love is platonic, or it is the real thing. Real platonic love has no agenda, neither party is waiting for anything to happen. Real platonic love tends to be more unconditional than romantic love which tends to be very conditional (although those involved in it would protest that they have undying love for each other which is totally unconditional, but they are insane and cannot be believed for a second). In fact, romantic love is quite fragile, whereas platonic love can weather the storm, it is based on a genuine regard for one another without those glorious intoxicating illusions associated with romantic love.

Why do we seek love?

Because we feel incomplete. There is an unbearable emptiness which drives us to make absolute fools of ourselves in pursuit of love. We seem to think love will solve all our problems, often when love is staring us in the face, we refuse to recognize it. The seeking is so much more poignant than the having.

Is there one perfect person out there for you, or can you, through selfless loving, have a great relationship with someone very special?

You must be very young to be asking such a silly question. Relationships are as special as you make them, and if you can stop asking yourself if what you are feeling is in fact love, then you may be capable of selfless love. Selfless love happens when you least suspect it, and always escapes your notice. It just is, and the specialness is a special kind of ordinariness. A perfect person for you? That is a notion that is certain to destroy any relationship. Perfection is a foolish notion which should be discarded.

Should, and do, men pursue women that they are interested in? Should women pursue?

Of course they do, and usually without finesse. Men tend to make too big a deal out of it (and so do women) which gets in the way. People being interested in one another is the most natural thing in the world, but we always seem to manage to screw it up. Of course women should pursue men. I wish they would pursue me.

If you are in a relationship (especially if you are married), how did you know that was the person for you? If not, have you ever been in love, and how did you know?

If you are asking yourself if you are in love, you aren’t, you are infatuated, which is different. When you are in love, you are in such a state of bliss that it is unmistakable. It takes over your life, you will definitely notice it and it will play hell with all of your best laid plans. How did I know she was right for me? I didn’t, and that was why all my relationships generally die from neglect. The few times I thought she was the one for me, I was badly mistaken, and suffered accordingly.

How do you stay in love, or make it last?

Stop asking yourself that dumb question and it may last a very long time.

What do you love best about the opposite sex, and what do you dislike the most about them?

I love their bodies, their faces, that magical something that cannot be defined, their compassion, and the depth to which they care when they do. I dislike the casual cruelty, the way in which a woman can shut you out so completely you feel like shooting yourself, I dislike the fickleness, the way women care about all the wrong things, but I am being unfair, men are much worse in all these respects, but then, you didn’t ask that question, did you?

What advice would you give? Love related, but anything at all to anyone at all.

Let it be what it is, stop trying to figure out your next move, and just relax and if at all possible enjoy yourself! You might want to also check to see if your fly is open, before engaging in your charm offensive.

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