Caught Looking


Dear Tim, 
I'm having trouble dealing with how we as humans have placed such a strict limit on our natural sexuality. Why is it such a wrong thing to feel physical attractions to other people when in a relationship? If that is what i feel then who says its wrong or not? Some law? Or rule? If so many people have trouble with it then aren't we the wrong ones for placing a restriction on natural feelings? Don't you think its pretty insane to expect someone you are with to ONLY think you're attractive and ONLY want you physically. I understand being in a relationship and deciding to build and grow and take care each other that is the more important stuff than just feeling an attraction. The fact that time and effort with someone is worth more than just a feeling then people shouldn't think they are being chosen over another. Am i being a dog or is this common? 

Dear Caught Looking, 
Perhaps you are having trouble with the strict limits you or your partner, as humans, have placed on your relationship. Humans are funny things. I doubt there has ever been a relationship where no one inside the relationship was attracted to some one outside the relationship. The whole idea of monogamy is pretty radical. Yet fidelity, loyalty, and trust are important. Most of us want at least a little of these in a relationship. 
There are no rules that you must follow. There can be if you want. The thing is they have to be agreed upon by both of you (or all six, I don't want to presume) in the relationship. Most people skip the conversations necessary to define these rules and they each continue living by their own rules as if they were THE rules. And it sucks to be them. 
Communicate with kindness. That should be the rule. How one expresses one's desires and attractions to one's partner must be done with care and consideration. And that is also how they need to be received. There is a world of difference between saying, "I think Brad Pitt was hot in that gladiator movie" and "I find your boss strangely attractive" and "I would totally have sex with your sister". Any of these, with some bad timing thrown in, could hurt some one's feelings. It is true that jealousy comes from insecurity. But who, of us humans, has not felt it, at least a little, when we fear that the one we trust and love and depend on may prefer some one else? 
I'm not sure there's an actual question here. It seems more like you are railing against injustice. I corrected a lot of the spelling and punctuation, but some of the sentence structure still leaves me guessing at your exact intended meaning. This is not a criticism. I am just glad you wrote. However, it does suggest to me that you are some one who may be prone to saying things before you've really thought them over. My advice is take great care when sharing stuff about your attractions. Consider the possibility that some of these things might be private. Some of our fantasies are just for us. 
On the other side of this, it is obvious that your feelings have been hurt. I am guessing you got some shame thrown at you on top of the injustice you already felt. This is important to realize. It's not just anger you feel. It is crucial to feel like you are being seen and heard clearly in a relationship. If, when all is said and done, you feel repressed and unfulfilled, this may not be the one for you. And it is okay to leave it. But first, I suggest a few more conversations where you each drop the blame and the shame and talk about your feelings. Don't just fuck and make up. Well, do. But talk first and figure out if your rules are compatible. 

Love Yourself 
No One Else Can Do It For You 
Tim Foljahn

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