Loving More Magazine #17,
Earlier this month while my female lover was furiously riding my
husband's lingarn during a love-in, my body felt that old familiar
pain in my gut and my heart once again. I silently collapsed in
defeat. Jealousy! When will I ever be done with that 'ol
green- eyed monster?
can't ever possibly compete with that," I thought as I
watched them, peeking between my fingers. "They are so
involved; so wild in their passion, they don't even notice me and
how miserable I feel!"
On top of
it, what was that chemistry they had, that wildness, that
connection, that joy? It looks like, but no, it couldn't be could
it? Could it be ... NRE?
minute here. My husband had been involved with "Bill"
and "Sue" for - about 15 years! This was not a new
relationship by any means. I met him, moved in with him, got
married, and then about a month later, was introduced to his
lovers, Bill and Sue. So, if anything, Sasha and I are the ones
who possibly still have NRE, not Sasha and Sue!
it is, obviously, an energy that is still there for them after all
been in two long-term monogamous relationships, 12 years each,
spanning 24 years of MY adult life. I know how sexual excitement
fades, how lovemaking becomes routine, stale, perhaps even
monogamous days of my life, I contemplated that
"swingers" probably maintained the excitement in their
love life by bringing that new, novel energy back home to their
of my observations of Sasha and Sue, long, long time lovers? Their
energy "felt" to me like NRE. I was jealous like it was,
or at least it seemed he has something different with her and not
with me-his wife, his buddy, his companion, his lover, his
confidant. Perhaps there is a "key" here. What do they
have together that Sasha and I don't have?
be because they are not cohabitating? Could it have something to
do with the frequency of their encounters? And if there is a
different energy for those who are infrequent lovers, perhaps we
need to coin yet another phrase?
ERE? External Relationship Energy? Extraneous Relationship Energy?
Extramarital Relationship Energy? Perhaps OPE: Outside Primary
all, familiarity breeds contempt, does it not? I am a relationship
counselor with my husband, so
I've heard all the stories in our practice. In addition, I've had
hundreds of interactive conversations with people regarding their
relationships on the Internet. "My spouse won't make love
with me anymore." A common story. Traditionally, the
neglected mate goes out and cheats and feels justified for their
actions. "We started out so passionate, so in love. What
happened?" Indeed, what has happened?
we have pent up resentments that create distancing in our
relationships. Resentments inevitably evolve with our primaries
due to the negative bonding patterns that emerge from being imago
mates. Imago mates are those to whom we are attracted and those
whom we attract to us in relationships due to unresolved issues we
have with our primary caretakers while we were growing up. Our
imagos resemble these caretakers, not physically, but emotionally,
psychologically and energetically. (Look for books by Harville
Hendrix for more on imago mates.---ed.)
imagos are also our mirrors, and our mates reflect back to us our
disowned subpersonalities and the characteristics that we need to
incorporate into ourselves in order to become centered and to
eventually develop an aware ego.
bonding patterns result when there is a disturbing event that
happens, not necessarily within the relationship, that generates a
fear or upset in one or both of the partners. They react by moving
into one of their defensive subpersonalities which
throws the other into one of their defensive subpersonalities.
example, if Sasha's ex wife is suing him for possession of the
house and Sasha is afraid or upset by that, he may become
impatient with me if I'm taking too long to get ready to go out,
and turn into "irritable father." His impatient behavior
and words may throw me into "withdrawn daughter."
persists with his behavior, I may eventually turn into
"yelling, angry mother," which may in turn send Sasha
into "bratty adolescent." It is a
parent/adult/parent/adult vicious cycle and difficult to get out
of once begun.
Typically, partners may banter with their pattern for a while,
hurting one another until one of them be- comes aware of the
drama, returns to center, and apologizes. And as one holds the
space in the center, the other usually returns and responds.
The initial destablization was outside of themselves.
Nevertheless, the result was a drama within the relationship.
This process of being in relationship, of "doing life"
together is a double-edged sword. It is my theory that the imago
process and the negative bonding patterns, even though we
apologize and "forgive" one another, create the
distancing and the deeply seated resentments that
eventually "kill" the sexual energy. It is like an
internal, invisible scoring system. No one knows when the
"magic" number is hit that is "one too many"
and the love game is over; breakup, divorce time. On the other
hand, this imago process is the road to the deepest, most
incredible intimacy possible, not only with our beloveds but with
ourselves. Our partners are our mirrors, reflecting back to us
characteristics that we react to, that we overly admire or despise
and those are issues we need to work on within ourselves. There is
an old saying, "if you notice it, it is yours."
If we can
overcome our difficulties and survive in our relationship, looking
at our human mirrors with fewer and fewer reactions, we discover
and incorporate those disowned characteristics into our being.
With this evolutionary process, we learn and grow and appreciate
our mates through time and go really deep with one another. So, my
questions are, "How do we prevent resenting the heck out of
one another over time? How do we keep that passion of NRE or
infrequent relationship alive in our primary pair bond?
After suffering many days with my jealousy bout and sufficiently
torturing my poor Sasha with my rantings--including writing
a 7 page "hate" letter to Sue! (how dare she, that
Bitch!)--I finally came to my senses, and perhaps a resolution, at
least to question number two.
our love-ins we had a tendency to begin and end with one another,
branching out to our other partners in the height of the
excitement. It had begun to feel like "swapping" to me.
Our intention was to always stay linked with one another. As
time progressed, I noticed a sense of "politeness" had
sort of set in. It was like, "oh, we don't see the company
much, let's focus a lot of attention on them." Since they
were the guests and we were focused on pleasing them and showing
them a good time, we lost our focus with one another. The linkage
was to consciously incorporate coming back to my beloved to
connect every first or second natural break (like stopping for
liquids, bathroom breaks). That way the full blown energy at the
height of passion would be returned to the primary repeatedly,
bringing that extreme sexual excitement back home and not just the
beginning energy before things got hot and the ending energy when
we were exhausted and wanting to go to sleep.
the internal resentments, plan on keeping the communication lines
wide open with my beloved with loving, tactful, honesty. Finally,
I figure if we stay orgasmic, follow our tantric practices and
connect twice daily, incorporate variety into our lives by sexual
diversity with our other lovers, bring home that NRE from other
contacts, and consciously maintain linkage so we never feel left
out and abandoned, we will feel passionately, lovingly connected
and there will be never be room for resentments in our hearts.
Kira Lessin, Relationship Counselor, Spiritual Advisor School of
Counseling Psychology Holistic Health Education, 1371 Malaihi Rd.,
Wailuku, Maui, HI 96793 (808) 244-4103, Toll Free:
1-877-244- 4103, Fax: (808) 242-7021 or firstname.lastname@example.org