Thursday, July 12, 2012

On Love

I read a post on Sadie's blog this week titled "Love Forever", about a conversation she had with her daughter about love, and specifically whether it's possible to promise someone you'll love them for the rest of your life. Please read the post, as I'm not going to summarize the whole thing. The question they discuss is this:
Do you believe one can sincerely, authentically commit, in real-world application, not metaphor, to loving someone else for the rest of their lives? Is futuristic love predictable? Or is the phrase “I will love you forever,” simply a symbolic statement we use to convey the emotional weight that we feel presently?
Here are my thoughts on this.

Yes, it's absolutely possible to promise to love someone forever - but I think of that as love in the highest possible sense - where I recognize our souls as connected (as all souls are), and I wish all the best for you, needing nothing from you.

It's absolutely *not* possible to promise to love someone forever in the traditional romantic sense - "I will always love and desire you and only you." People change, emotions and feelings change. It's no more possible to promise that you will always love one person in that sense than it is possible to promise that next Tuesday will be sunny and warm. Or that three years from Tuesday it will be sunny and warm.

More than ten years ago, I decided to end a marriage that clearly wasn't working for anyone involved. I finally came to clarity on the hardest decision I hope to ever make when I realized that I could release her and still love her. And that's what I tried to do, and I'm convinced it worked, and that everyone involved is better off for that marriage ending.

Did I stop loving her? By most conventional measures, yes. I was very clear that I didn't want to be married to her, and I've never second-guessed myself on that. But I would answer that in the highest sense, I never stopped loving her, and never will. I don't want to live with her, and desire that our lives overlap as little as possible. But I respect our time together, and I very honestly hope for her happiness.

In the end, I agree with Sadie. My experience is that love *is* different. Love is infinite.



  1. I've promised to love Jill forever. I've even promised to love only her, at least in a romantic sense. If I fall out of love with her, then that makes me a promise-breaker. But wanting only her, as in physically or sexually desiring her? That's something I cannot do. She understands.

  2. Hi, Max... good morning...

    What a great post. I will have to go read Sadie's... see what's there.

    'Love' is a strange thing. Hell, look at Helen and Paris (The Iliad)... the death and destruction that arose from that relationship.

    My marriage ended way too many years ago. I think at the time I loved my then-wife more than she loved me... Hell, I'm not sure she did love me... but to this day, I have affection for her. I wouldn't marry her again, but I still care about what happens to her.

    It is amazing how souls... spirits connect.

    Have a great weekend, Max...


  3. It is infinite. Limited only by what we are willing to release :)

    And this is a very nice post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this very complex subject.


  4. I completely understand this idea of love in its highest, purest sense where the sensation, the affect, the connection is the very essence of the infinite (and the intimate). I feel this for everyone who has left their trace on my life.

    But... I have to admit the connection between love and desire is a little more complex, tangled and darker for me. Thankfully, each day brings an opportunity to move to a higher plane.

    Great post, Max...

  5. I know I will be thinking about this all day.

    I am at a crossroades in my marriage. We are in counseling and trying to figure out where we're going. Do we stay? Do we part ways?

    As for loving my husband. I know that I love him. That will never change. The problem is that I am no longer *in* love with him. That is the tricky part and coming to term with that is painful. Do I simply settle and stay or do I take a chance and move on and hope to fall *in* love again?