Ah… love is in the air. Love is in glances that you share. Love is all over the sheets and in a rubbery tissue ball in the bin by the bed. She catches your eye and smiles at you expectantly and you smile back. You lie back with your head upon a pillow in a comfortable silence letting your mind wonder – you think back to how you first met, the first time you fooled about, the early weeks of your fledgling relationship onward through time going over dates you went on, parties, your first shag. On and on till it dawns on you that you’ve been dating for eight months and recently she’s said the word ‘love’ a lot. ‘Isn’t this or that thing loveable…I love this toothpaste…aren’t Bill and Jane so in love, they are a lovely couple. Suddenly you realise what exactly that expectant smile was actually expecting. Three words.
No, not ‘Fancy a shag.’ But, I…L…L love you. Oh God. Now you realise the reason she’s been swallowing lately. Then you experience a moment of regret as you also realise she hasn’t actually accepted your argument that swallowing is ‘just good manners’ as you have to swallow enough liquid to rehydrate a cupa-soup when licking her out.
I’ve always tended toward long-term relationships. For me general dating around and playing the field is what’s most difficult. But it appears to be the case, or at least a strong perception, that men shy away from the L-word like it’s a prostate exam. Why? There is the obvious idea that it’s linked to a new level of commitment and by not saying it a guy can delude himself that he’s not that committed, and is still somewhat of a free spirit still. But really what is so great about being a free spirit? Ok, you can fuck about without guilt or remorse – that is true. But then again, if you’re in a relationship where your partner is looking like they’re expecting you to say ‘I love you’, then you probably have sex on tap and assuming you work at it that sex is likely to get better. Plus, you have all the perks such as the ‘little things’ I mentioned in a previous blog. So why are they holding back from the brink of the love precipice? When is the right moment, if not now?
The obvious answer to the question is: ‘when it feels right’ so lets just dismiss such pleasant easy thinking for the nonsense that it is. I am sure that for some few martini drinking beautiful people, things are perfect in their lives, they’ve never been hurt by anybody, never over extended their feelings, never been harshly dumped and never been cheated on nor lost somebody they loved. For those few people ‘when it feels right’ is fine and I wish them well in Narnia or ‘Imagination Land’ or wherever the fuck they live. But things are more complicated in the real world and people’s feelings move at difference speeds. Which leads to the next conundrum, you say it first, and then your partner holds out…
That’s a tough one as it puts a strain on things – suddenly it becomes crystalised that one member of the relationship is investing more emotionally than the other (or at least, that is the perception). That hurts the person doing the investing because – if I can continue the financial metaphor – the other potential investor appears not to view the risk as one that will yield a sufficient ROI to make it part of their portfolio over the long term.
I think the problematic idea of ‘Romance’ plays a key part in the overall problem. If love was not seen as intrinsically linked with ‘magic’ and ‘just knowing’ or as something fairy-like that is just ‘in the air’ I think we’d all be a lot better off. Romantic notions and magic moment mumbo jumbo is lovely in principal but encourages us to abrogate the responsibility for love to some ethereal level that we have no control over. Relationships are about compromise and so is love. But you can’t compromise with something that is so high up on a magic pedestal that its somehow a taboo to talk about it lest you tarnish its fragile nature and cause it to smash to the floor and explode into a thousand tear coloured pieces. I’m not drawing strong conclusions about this subject so I’m sticking it up for debate – when do you reckon its right? How do you get both people there at once?
When I was younger, a girlfriend of mine was doing me the honour of blowing me, and she was doing a particularly good job. As I lay back moaning, the three words started to slip out of my mouth in a rather salacious moan… my brain fired up half way through the word ‘love’ and I ended up saying “ooh… I Lo..ooooower…” Didn’t want to ruin the moment for myself after all.