Tuesday, 30 August 2016

My love is not a prison

It is here we will begin to navigate tricky waters, where some of you will cringe and say " that's not for me, I just couldn't share". 
Hear me out though, as there will be information in here that could benefit a monogamous  relationship too.

Our cultural expectations after we find "the one" go something like this:
▪ You're mine and I am yours
▪ You are the only person I should ever need
▪ I will never again be attracted to anyone else and you'd better not be either!
▪ I will not share you

All of these sentiments whilst at the start sound nice and romantic after awhile can settle out to what I call "ownership love".  And rather than two people earnestly making an effort for a lifetime to meet each other's needs,  the relationship is at risk of morphing into something more like a set of restrictions and unfulfilled needs.
This is not really love. It's ownership. Our traditional marriage customs and marriage vows unfortunately reinforce the concept of ownership. Of course love exists alongside this but we do tend to inaccurately equate the two. Levels of jealousy are also often falsely heralded as a measure of love but I will devote an entire post to this soon.

So, if the opposite of being owned is being free what does this mean for relationships?
A very wise man called Kenneth Kailey taught me from his Native American culture that everyone is free to walk their own path and are responsible for their own choices. As people come and go they may share our path for a time but ultimately the factors keeping them there should be entirely their own choices.

I learn from this to enjoy my time with the people who are alongside me and love them in a way that leaves them feeling free. Knowing that they choose to be with me leaves me feeling way more special than feeling like they are only there because they took vows and made promises that they have to steel themselves to keep.

This is what I mean when I say I love you :
☆ I want you to have whatever makes you happy, even if that is not me,
☆ I love it when other people also love you because it means that they are seeing you like I do
☆ I don't want to control you
☆ I'm not jealous when you spent time with others and I'm especially happy if you are getting a need  fulfilled that is important to you
☆ I will accept any decisions you make about your life and your path
☆ You are free.
☆ My love is not a prison

Naturally as we give this type of love we will want to be receiving it too, in our love relationships, our  friendships and our families.  This type of " non ownership" love can be applied across all relationships. I will be devoting an entire post to family relationships soon.

So, what happens when love becomes about freedom and not obligation? 
The answer is a very powerful, very committed and very secure love.
And love will be multiplied!
The more we love in a healthy way and the more people we love the greater our capacity to love becomes. 

In my last post I spoke about fear. Non ownership love can eliminate fear, because fear of loss is rooted in the concept of possession.

The practice of non ownership love is essential to successful polyamory but it is not exclusive to poly either. Monogamous relationships would be greatly enhanced if we lifted our cages and let go of fear.
In fact I'll leave you with a little advice - if you are thinking about opening up your current relationship  to polyamory, start practicing this type of love well in advance before involving other people. It does take a bit of practice as it is a vastly different way of thinking to the social conventions we have been taught.

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