A friend of mine is sleeping with a girl whom he does not love but knows is beginning to like him more than he likes her. When asked what he would do with that knowledge, he said, continue sleeping with her until she became fed up with the situation and ended it.
Now, there are a number of elements to this I’d like to address. First, all parties in this situation come voluntarily. No one is forced. No one is a victim. Both began the affair for the simple pleasure of it and one’s change in approach does not necessitate a change in the other’s.
However, this is a fine illustration of how respect is everything when it comes to love, and how today’s generation doesn’t understand it meaning or obligation.
First, let’s address having sex outside the framework of love. You’re asking for trouble, period. Even if the love under which meaningless sex might be conducted was shallow, to have it at all creates a bridge that sex uses to seal two beings together. Ignoring the necessity of love when it comes to physical intimacy is dangerous, and for however much some might which to dissociate love and sex, that simply doesn’t jive in the long term, and people become broken and hollow. Just ask an old porn star.
Second, let’s remind ourselves that love is not an emotion. It’s a commitment to the betterment of another with a dedication of the soul. For more information, visit: “The Nature of Love.” This commitment must be a choice one commits to. It’s no more an emotion than a car is — both can hit you, run you over, and take you for a ride. You can feel it in the heart, but it is not an emotion.
“Love is the least random act in the universe.” – Chaos Theory (Movie)
Love is not love if there is no act to express it, the same as faith is not faith if there is not effort to express it. (That’s a whole other post right there.) I can tell my “wife” I love her 15 times a day, but if I don’t engage in her life, is there truly love? Or just a desire of affection? Love cannot sit still. Wind is only the change of pressure from high to low areas, but if it does not move, it is not wind — just pressure.
Now, let’s look at the players. My friend is an intelligent young man who’s enjoyed the opportunities he has with women across the area in which he lives. The friend he sleeps with has equal opportunity of her own and in the course of the affair, landed on each other – so-to-speak. Both are independent, successful and free. No children, no current relationships, and no pretenses with each other.
But when she messages him more often and shows actual interest, it becomes more than a love affair, or friends with benefits; it becomes a girl hoping the man who never feigned love in the initial doing would change his mind for her growing affinity and invitation. What I find tragic is not that a woman would love a man who has no real interest, but that she thinks entering such a relationship like this in the first place would garner his respect for her, because a man must respect a woman to truly love her. If he does not respect her, he will not love her.
When she shows as little respect for herself by letting a man into her bed who hasn’t earned the right, she cannot expect him to show that respect to her. She might be intelligent and smart and will stand up for herself in nominal situations, but it’s the small things that capture our attention and say the most about us. And however politically incorrect it may seem, men do not respect women they don’t have to fight for and earn.
Thirdly, truth is, my friend is not obligated to change his actions toward her because she wants to change her actions toward him. Both entered this with no strings attached, and her desire to attach strings does in no way obligate him to reciprocate. However, that is not the only code men should live by, and he has an obligation to HIMSELF, more than even to her, not to continue sleeping with a woman who no longer approaches it as he might. It evolves the situation from a mutual agreement to find cheap pleasure into using, and it is to his own detriment that he must consider not sleeping with her anymore.
Should she desire a man who love, honor and cherish her, she must first present herself as a woman worth loving, honoring and cherishing. Her mere presence as a female human in no way makes her worth of a man’s love, honor and cherishment than that his masculinity means she should love, honor or cherish him. These are voluntary qualities that we have made innate within to define who we are and what we believe. These qualities are what prepare us for a solid relationship with someone who is more than a “F__k-buddy,” but a partner, friend and lover.
Some people aren’t ready for what real love entails. They would rather enjoy what comes easy and cheap. They have other thoughts and other obligations, or simply just don’t want the responsibility. But whatever lifestyle is chosen, there can be no mistake that true love is not one merely of affection, but of commitment, choice, discernment, a using of the mind, heart and body to compliment and complete each other in a manner God designed us, and never to the concept that such a relationship fulfills our individual purposes.
Love is so complex and powerful, that to believe it can be conducted without respect is to remove that which makes true love so powerful in the first place.