The holidays traditionally are a time of gathering, of catching up with those close to you on the intimate details of their lives. Inevitably, someone will raise questions (and perhaps an eyebrow or two) about recent goings on in the romance department. Being subjected to questioning, along with a friend and the guy she’s been dating dancing around the edges of commitment, has lead me to question just what is involved in a romantic relationship. My careful analysis leads me to conclude it is a delicate juxtaposition of the sacred trinity of dating: the physical, the emotional, and timing.
The physical seems pretty straightforward. We all get lonely, crazy hot ideas sometimes, especially if the dating scene has been (more than) a little dry and suddenly, the nearest person seems like a really hot prospect. Of course, the physical becomes meaningful (supposedly) if you have
The emotional. This means that, first off, you are emotionally mature enough, personally, for a relationship. Ideally, both of you have realistic expectations, you genuinely like yourselves, you are willing and able to thing about your feelings independently, and you have checked your (emotional) baggage at the gate. You also experience emotional closeness as a couple – you discuss both the good and the bad openly and honestly. You can share ideas and all that jazz discussed in a previous post (see ’emotional cheating’).
“Some people want diamond rings, some just want ev-er-y-thing, but everything means nothing if I don’t got…”
Good timing. You need to meet the person at the right point in your life. If you’re still torn up about your ex, if you’re about to leave for a 6 month expedition into the jungles of central Africa, or if you’ve decided that you need to get the wild and crazy single days out of your system, then you can have the emotional and the physical potential, but it’s just not going to work out. You both need to be at the right point in your life if you ever going to mesh past your bleary hungover dusky kiss good bye in the morning.
My contention is that if you have these three elements, this is a strong foundation for commitment. “But Marisa,” you say in your little I-told-you-so voice, “what about religion? What about shared experiences? what about common interests, as to continue construct further shared experiences? what about the next ‘Big One’ – where will you be?”
Well, I would like to remind you that as a non-practicing… nothing, I tend to neglect religion as a factor in my love life. Maybe that’s not fair or accurate, but that’s how we roll here on Park Blvd. That’s right, the roughest hood in the town.
And the earthquakes… we’ll be ready.
I’ll be ready.
I have a bottle of water in the car.