Kink in exile

Notes from a kinky nomad

Care&Feeding: what love is not

I’m reading this new blog called Raptitude which is sorta about mindfulness, and sorta about emotional intelligence, and occasionally about Ikea.  There was a post about love…

Love doesn’t hurt. If it hurts it’s something else. Fear. Attachment. Idolatry. Addiction. Possessiveness.

Nobody’s heart aches out of love. In pop culture, love gets conflated with desire all the time. From childhood we learn you can like something, or you can love it, as if it’s only different degrees of the same thing.

Love is all selflessness. It’s the opposite of need and attachment. To an individual it’s a sensation of allowing, rather than seeking. Letting go, rather than grasping.

Love is subtle and silent and delicate, and in its beginnings it can be drowned out easily by attachment, lust and fear. Love must have space, and force is what crowds it out. Love is powerful but it isn’t forceful.

It goes on, and you should totally check it out, but I want to unpack some things cause I’ve been thinking about this.

Love doesn’t hurt. Praise my liberal highschool sex-ed curriculum for instilling in me backwards and forwards and 10 ways from Sunday that love does not hurt.  I didn’t even realize how deep in my brain this fact sat until there was something with a boy, maybe he snapped at me or said something mean (he didn’t hit me), it made me cry and in that moment I had an image of my heavy-set gym teacher in her grey tshirt with a whistle around her neck: “Love does not hurt.  If it hurts it isn’t love.”

Except, sometimes it does, because selflessness hurts.  It doesn’t have to, but the path to enlightenment, the path away from anger and wanting, takes time, and moments on that path hurt.  Sometimes a lot.

There are a lot of things that cohabitate with love.  I can love and want and lust after the same person at the same time.  It is confusing, but also…common.  “I love you” means I want for you what you want for yourself.  I want you to access your dreams and passions, I want you to be happy, peaceful and filled with lovingkindness – unless you need your anger and then I won’t fault you for it.  “I love you” is about you.  “I want you” means just that, I want to be near you, I want you as part of my life, I want to build a life with you.  Sometimes it means I want your body, I physically want you.  “I want you” is about me.  Sometimes these things happen at the same time.  If I love you and I want you are at odds, I love you wins.  This hurts like hell.

Love happens when I feel safe.  Love is not about me, but it can not happen if I do not feel safe.  Maybe for other people it can and does, but I can not yet reconcile being so open and so vulnerable with someone who doesn’t help build the foundation of my safety.  This sounds like love is tit for tat and I don’t have a response to that – I don’t know if love is finite but I do know that the ways in which I express love and the reserves I use to experience it are.

Written by kinkinexile

April 18, 2013 at 6:46 pm

Posted in care&feeding

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