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  1. #1
    Senior Member BAJ's Avatar
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    Default The non-Eros relationship update thread

    I see there are many threads about romance advice in many specific instances, and a thread asking for updates on those.

    I mentioned seeking "psychological intimacy" on facebook and in the forum, and one friend automatically assumed that I meant romance. Perhaps I could be delusional, but I wish for intimacy with celibacy.

    What I would like is instances of non-romantic intimacy; that is intimacy who's goal is not true love, kissing, and sexuality. These could happen at some point in the future, or possibly be the motivation of the person from whom you obtained intimacy, but not in your motivation. Also, one could pay a therapist, but for the purpose of this thread, I would like to exclude that.

    In the "Art of Happiness" by the Dali Lama, he describes that he would go speak to the man who sweeps the floor. China was destroying his nation, and the man who swept the floor was the person he would confide in. His point was to "take intimacy where you can find it."

    Also, this is not about bees stealing from flowers, for they benefit the flower as well. I'm not some parasite; I want to benefit those who are my nutritious flower of psychological intimacy. Where are the flowers so that I can benefit them?

    Please, talk about intimacy in a general way, if you like. Even tell me this is crazy outside the prospect of romance, if believe so. However, what I really want is to see how you developed your sources of psychological intimacy outside of sexual prospect. You went for coffee with this group and met a friend. You got involved with a prayer group. You were estranged from someone and they later became your close friend.

    So this is like the romantic update thread, sans romance or Eros. You had a great conversation with Person A today, who you met via [this], and this is how we came to that point.

  2. #2
    Another awesome member. Curator's Avatar
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    I have a completely emotionally intimate relationship with my best friend, neither of us have a sexual interest in the other, as I have a repressed libido, and she is a lesbian, but we enjoy a deep level of love and emotional intimacy... not quite what you where looking for I think, but similar, no? theres no Eros here, but I guess it could definitely be considered romantic

  3. #3
    Senior Member BAJ's Avatar
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    Oh, yes definitely. This is a very wide ball park. This fits exactly. I intended to share mine as they occur, or even in flashback. I guess my notions stop when the intent of the relationship is to head to second base. When the intention is romantic love. Cupid is not shooting. It can even be a relationship that went all the way around at some point, but is no longer playing ball.

    Extend the baseball metaphor further, it includes everyone in the stands, unless you went to the baseball game with a paper bag over your head.

    I've had friends like the one you describe (sort of). Also, it can be romantic or not. There is brotherly or sisterly love too. I'm not looking for just "romantic relationships without sex" or unrequited love. I'm looking for any platonic deep friendship, even if it is a transitory sharing.

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    Another awesome member. Curator's Avatar
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    hmmm, pretty much all of my deep friendships have been platonic, with my best friend now, we are so close, we call ourselves platonic lovers,lol... we have every aspect of a normal relationship, except sex... and we seem to be quite more emotionally intimate and open than the majority of people ive known in sexual relationships... and the funny thing is, its easily the most fulfilling relationship I have ever been in... its seriously making me consider never having sex again,lol...

  5. #5
    Lay the coin on my tongue SilkRoad's Avatar
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    I feel very fortunate that I have had a number of very close and fulfilling friendships in my life so far. I’ve also had a fair few that were/are less close, but still fulfilling and good in their own way. I can give you a snapshot of a few. The majority are people I’ve known through my church, but not all.

    I haven’t had a lot of success at this stage with romantic love but it seems that a lot of people – sometimes even those who are married/in LTRs – will say that friendship can be more important and fulfilling.

    -One of my best friends in Canada is fifteen years older than me. We know each other through our church. We would have met when I was about 13 and she was about 28, I think. (We’re now 31 and 46.) I don’t remember exactly the first time we met, I think it was more or less through mutual friends, but she told me it was when I was playing the piano at some talent evening. We started as good acquaintances and became friends. Even with a big age difference and me being a child when we met, I was always mature for my age and we would have discussed books and music, for sure. She’s a very kind and open minded person (I’d say quite strict about certain things, but still open minded) and open to having friends of many different ages. By the time I was 18-19 we were getting closer and gradually discussing more personal emotional issues and the like. We were quite close by the time I moved to another country at age 23. And we have become considerably closer over the almost nine subsequent years, because we regularly write long emails or exchange comments on Facebook, schedule occasional long phone chats (usually 4 hours or something), spend good time together when we manage to be in the same place together, etc. We’ve travelled together a bit and had a great time. I consider her one of my gurus. When I have a bit of a crisis or a dilemma I vent to her for some comfort and insight (I consider her very wise!). She vents to me sometimes but it’s probably a bit more on my part. But mostly it’s a pretty non-dramatic friendship and we’re not simply dumping on each other. There will normally be a bit of dumping, a bit of chat about books and travel, a bit of gossip etc. She’s probably ISFJ or maybe quite an “F” ISTJ. A great friendship and one I value very much.

    -Another best friend from Canada now lives in Japan. She is a mutual close friend of the friend mentioned above. We clicked very very quickly when we met around age 19-20…she is a year younger. We became close but not super-close, I guess. A lot of conversations about books which we both love. She got married at 23 and moved to Japan with her Japanese husband. Somewhat like the friend above, we have somehow become closer at a distance. She is another guru for me but she has had some tough times in recent years so we try to provide mutual support. And we always talk a lot about books too. I visited them in Japan at the end of last year. We did some great sightseeing too but a lot of it was just relaxing and catching up with her and a lot of deep, intense chats. After two and a half weeks we felt so sad when we said goodbye that we both almost started to cry at the airport. She is INFJ and in fact is probably more like me than any other friend I have.

    -My best friend in my current city is five years older than me. She was a good acquaintance for a few months and then we started chatting about our lives and feelings. We love similar music and bonded a bit over that but she really opened up to me emotionally about stuff she was going through. I think she found me a sympathetic listener, although our lives have been quite different. She had a difficult and wild background which left many scars while I’ve always been pretty stable. I have had to support and bail her out quite a few times in our friendship. Sometimes she has done things that have scared or upset me. She can be unpredictable. But I have a deep emotional investment in her by now (close to six years) and the thing is, she tries to be there for me too. When I had an emotional shock last week she had me over a couple of times so I could talk about it. Her support reminded me why I’ve hung in there when sometimes the friendship has gone into very difficult territory indeed. She has tested INFJ but I am not always sure. I think it is likely but INFP is also likely.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member BAJ's Avatar
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    Though I'm fairly relationship free at the moment, I've had all sorts of platonic relationships.

    One example is the journal person. In this type, I know the person, and interact with them. However, I also write them. This was difficult in high school and middle school. People don't tend to react well if you hand them a long letter, which begins with all your feelings and possible ideas for them. At different points, I wrote people, but did not give it to them. If I'm angry or infatuated, I write dozens of long letters but do not send them. I learned it is good to write them and NOT send them.

    Occasionally, I wrote them and it was like a journal or confession to a person. One was an art teacher. However, my favorite was an intern. I will count this one since it was strictly platonic on her side, and nothing happened. However, I was quite insane with infatuation (at first). Through some orchestrations, we started to do things together, like go hiking or eat out. However, it was all very civil, as if I were her mentor. We went out regularly every week, by arrangement.

    I was quite religious at the time, and the same week I was asking this girl out, I'd been to a sermon about the sacred heart of Jesus. This is a form of unrequited love, where God loves openly, like a heart wrapped in barbed wire and then lit on fire, but love is not returned to him. I asked to experience this for myself. Enter this girl. Be careful what you ask for.

    Yet, when it became clear it was platonic, that was fine, because I want to experience this type of spiritual love. And I did.

    But then I started writing as well. Probably in the course of the ten week internship, I wrote her over 200 emails. Some things were very helpful in her being a "journal person". First, she was brilliant and a fast reader. Second, she had the component of seeing my life as a comedy of errors rather than a tragedy. Third, she was extremely open-minded and practically nothing would freak her out, at least as far as literature was concerned.

    What I think is that each person is like a portal to a new world, and perhaps who I am in that world is different. This person opened new worlds to me both within and outside myself.

    --------------------------------

    Another person, I met through campus ministry. He was a would be writer. He also had the essential component that he saw my life as a comedy rather than a tragedy, but it was unbounded. That is, there are constraints and parameters, and I have to be careful what I say. First, you don't want to be betrayed in your disclosure, and second, if you stray from someone's mind's box to far, it might do them harm or upset them. He was very open-minded, and had such a hearty laugh at the most obscene speculations.

    He was co-dependent, and needed someone to drive him places, but it was a small price to pay to have such a confessor.

    Yet, he became too expensive when he took on a crack whore as his significant other, and I was force to sever ties. It was sort of sad, but I can't afford those kinds of problems. Too much dishonesty and violence entered into it.

    ----------------------------------

    In addition to these, it seems people want to tell me about their problems, like their adulteries or the story of the sexual abuse, or whatever. I told nobody about what they told me, and I listened and helped them if I could offer any support. In those kinds of intimacies, it feels good to be trusted and these different people often benefited me in some way. Yet, this is not the kind of Bohemian intimacy where I can talk about anything.

    -------

    In many relationships, the other person was interested in me. So on my side it was platonic, and on their side it was romantic.

    ....perhaps more later...

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