Kink in exile

Notes from a kinky nomad

Care & Feeding part 1 of N: Love is a verb

To paraphrase the lovely Ironrose, it doesn’t matter if you love me in the abstract.  If I can’t see it, hear it or touch it, it doesn’t count.  Sounds mean on first blush, but it rings true to me.  It doesn’t matter if you love me, I need to feel loved for good things to happen and so do you.  What’s more, I don’t only have to see it, hear it, and touch it…I also have to then parse it as love (or lust, or like or what have you).

The tl:dr version is that people perceive what it means to be loved differently and what makes someone feel loved changes from person to person.  You can call it systems of appreciation, the 5 Love Languages, or my personal favorite phrase: intimacy markers, but the point remains, align them correctly or mayhem occurs.

So here are my intimacy markers:
Those of you following the story of my head-over-heals crush on someone with no time, can guess how much I wish this wasn’t true.  And to totally ruin the surprise ending, it isn’t 100% true, but time is one of my most consistent intimacy markers.  It is the time you carve out for me in your life, the response time to the communication I send to you, and your willingness to commit time to activities with me in the future.  The promised silver lining is this: my obsession isn’t actually with time, time makes me feel valued and valuable.  While it is not 100% a one to one alignment, it is very frequently a very accurate gauge, and so lack of time makes me feel as though I am not valued.  After all, if something is precious to you, wouldn’t you want to keep it around and put it ahead of other, presumably less precious, things?

I know that value and valuableness can be conveyed without time or with bounded time because I have lovers in other cities whom I only see while traveling and typically don’t spend time on the phone with between trips.  I’m not sure how this works but I suspect there is a good bit of feeling prioritized when i am in town.

Acts of service:
This is borrowed directly from the Five Love Language, but acts of service, be they foot rubs, cups of tea or remembering the sweater you know I’m going to forget, make me feel like my partner is taking an extra step to try and connect with me and help terraform the world in ways that make it a better place for me to be.  This is also one of the few, if not the only, intimacy markers that I don’t also use to show my love.  (More on how I show love later.)

You don’t count as people:
You are the person I spend time with when all I want to do is sit on the bedroom floor wearing yoga pants and a sweatshirt.  You come home from a crazy day and don’t mind that I’m reading on the couch next to you.  We’re comfortable raiding each other’s fridges and commenting on the lingerie lingering on the bathroom floor.  We tease each other about the personal shit no one else knows about, ask intimate questions, deal with each other’s flus and hangovers.  You’ve seen me cry; I don’t excuse myself when I’m about to cry and you’re the only one in the room.  When we can both say “I don’t want to be around people” and still enjoy sharing space…those people, few and far between, are who I call to pick me up from hospital or jail.

Food is love:
I’m a Jew girl, true to my roots I build intimacy over shared meals, hell, I build acquaintances over shared meals, but I have a really hard time with the idea of someone who loves me won’t share food with me.  My all American ex, who for the record was an amazingly gentle and giving person, didn’t get this at first and I simply couldn’t understand what was so horribly wrong that he wound’t give me his food.

And a couple of ways I show love:
I grew up in a gift giving culture, so while I no longer use this as a way to judge someone else’s love of me, I still tend to go out of my way to pick up the tab or find cute little treats for the people I love.

I offer you resources before I share them with the community:
I offer you first or early dibs on my time, I tell you about events you may want to attend, I save random useful things that may be helpful to you…really this is just hoarding rebranded :-p

Yup, if I love you (or if you wake up on my couch, or if I know you in passing, or if we work together) I will feed you.  See above.

Written by kinkinexile

October 29, 2011 at 7:55 pm

3 Responses

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  1. “After all, if something is precious to you, wouldn’t you want to keep it around and put it ahead of other, presumably less precious, things?”

    That’s exactly how I feel about it. An old play partner of mine was an extremely busy person, often too busy to come over and play with me. While we’re still friends, we have grown apart, largely because I can’t help thinking that if he cared very much about me, he’d make time for me. I actually have trouble seeing time as a specific intimacy marker because it seems like such a basic building block of relationships to me.

    Acts of service are huge for me too. Particularly food related service, now that I think about it. I feel especially loved when people cook for me, it makes me really happy when someone makes an effort to look after my physical needs. Another thing I like about acts of service is how they show that someone has really been paying attention. It makes me happy when someone remembers that I like a cup of tea in the morning, or that I get cold easily and will need my sweater.


    October 30, 2011 at 8:45 pm

  2. I simply couldn’t understand what was so horribly wrong that he wound’t give me his food.

    Yes yes yes! I never thought about it this way but this is totally why I steal my boyfriend’s food too. It’s not the food I want, it’s the fact that it’s his. [grin] He totally uses this to trick me into eating when I’m grouchy, too.


    October 31, 2011 at 7:35 pm

  3. […] aware of my intimacy markers because this thing is actually a very vulnerable part of me, I’m not an icequeen bitch of the […]

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