Neha from New Dehli, India asks:
I absolutely love your articles and responses to people’s questions. I am an attractive, educated and independent woman. I fell in love with the only man I ever fell in love with 15 years ago and married him. My marriage has been largely good with the regular ups and downs that come with two people loving and living with each other. And then destiny placed someone in front of me a few months ago and I started feeling the same stirrings that I felt 15 years ago.
God knows I tried to control my emotions but I kept falling for this person with abandon. I took the initiative and approached him; I was duly reciprocated. I took it to the level desired, i.e., physical intimacy. I enjoyed it, and never felt a whiff of guilt because I am following my heart and feel genuine love and respect for this person. But I think for this person the attraction towards me is more physical than emotional. There is not much common ground for a stable footing. He’s my heart’s indulgence but I know that I am not his. I cannot break away. Why am I so drawn to him? How can I disconnect? I don’t want to hurt my heart because I feel there’s no future other than physical pleasure.
Greetings, Neha. Thank you for your kind words as well as your excellent inquiry. What a succulent and shadowy path you’ve been wandering. A true devotee of the Theater of Desire, pleasure has become the mandate of your spirit. In order to find and attain this mystery as you have, one must embrace fear and learn the subtle nuance of Eros himself. And He isn’t nearly as clear cut or easily classified as people like to assume.
As I look at the situation I see that your husband is forever your best friend. You really are deeply in love with him and together the two of you have found a true tenderness few are ever lucky enough to know. But passions fade. Desire wanes. The lover you’ve taken is a shadow mate—a dark partner to help you walk through the forbidden garden. It’s not so much that this relationship is more “sex” and less “emotion.” It is simply love of a different type. Please don’t let yourself get ensnared in the age old trap of separating emotions and sensations into categories of good or bad, “higher” and “lower.” There are many kinds of love and none is any better or purer than any other. Your lover feels the joy of your soul just as he feels the joy of your body. Those two realms are fused for him and embedded into the core of his experience of you.
Too often I find people, especially women, bent on defining relationships as either/or. It’s either love or it’s lust. Either spiritual or sexual. As if there is no way something could be all these things at once. But I look at this man and I see that deep love is his as it is yours in this relationship, but he is more rigid in his expressions. It is important for you not to mar the beauty of your current pleasure with senseless debates over male and female thinking, or whether one of you feels “more” or “less” than the other. This is love. This is sex. And this is nature. It’s not something we do by formula. It is fluid and my advice to you is to flow with it. Why on earth would you wish to emotionally detach from this? Is it fear of being hurt? Love is always a risk. Loss will always visit our journeys together in one way or another. But what is loss but the knowing that we once had something special? That we once grasped pure magic. Yes it is true, you and your lover will never be traditional mates but that doesn’t matter tonight, now does it? Your love of this man illuminates your existence. So stop trying to define it as this or that and don’t break away from something that need not be ended yet. One day it will end and you will be sad. But you will also be wise. You are living a magnificent life so whisper this mantra to the winds, “No regrets,” and be well.
Do you have a question for Liam? Ask Liam your question now.