What being a relationship oriented guy is and is not

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    Aug 12, 2013 4:30 PM GMT
    I think there's a misconception of what being relationship oriented is. Given my age I've been able to evaluate first hand those who are and are not relationship oriented. You may find this a surprise but it has nothing to do with how promiscuous or even faithful one is. That may determine the type of relationship that works for said individual but it doesn't determine their ability to form a long-term relationship. I have one friend who was in a 14 year marriage and is now with a new partner for about 5 years. He has always been in open relationships but he has never been single in the 20 years I've known him. While he is the only friend in a completely open relationship, very few, if any, of my friends in gay relationships have been 100% monogamous. One friend, who is in such a relationship now for over 5 years was previously in open relationships. He is another friend who has only been single for short periods in his life.

    What about compromise? Surely that is an important part of a relationship. Yet when I observe many of these couples I find one is doing a lot more compromising than the other. It made me realize it is not so much about the day to day compromise but the big ones we make to decide if we are going to even bother to pursue a relationship with someone. Does he have to be hot, be of a certain race, or have a certain type of physique? How much does age differences matter? (For a lot my age, very little if he is younger, but very much if he is a great deal older.) Does he have to have a great job? Does he have to be as smart as you? Can you deal with him being too dominant or passive? Does he have to be fantastic in bed? Are you a neat freak that can't tolerate anyone who is not as neat as you? What about his mannerisms? The longer your list the more likely you are NOT a relationship oriented person.

    And now for the big one. We all want to feel chemistry but what exactly does that mean? Is chemistry a passionate sexual attraction or interesting conversation coupled with a great sense of humor. What if you really enjoy someone's company but there is only a modest sexual attraction? If you are the type who quickly shortens the list in the previous paragraph when there is a strong sexual attraction but lengthens it, when there is less, then you are going to have a hard time forming a long term relationship.

    My experience with friends who are continuously coupled is that they look for partners like you would look for work. They decide they are ready for a relationship, go out on some dates, and then choose among their possibilities. The process is far more like the way we all make friends than what we see in some chick flick romance. Their list is not a whole lot different then the list they would have for a friend except for a bit more emphasis on sexual attraction. I even have one friend that is married to guy, he's been with for 20 years. When they first started dating, he was often going with other guys and told me that sex was a bit of a struggle with his soon to be partner. I was dumbfounded by the fact that he would settle with someone that he struggled in bed with. Apparently the sex got better with time and they've been happily married ever after. Now that is a relationship oriented guy.
  • PR_GMR

    Posts: 3831

    Aug 12, 2013 4:41 PM GMT
    Interesting post. I'm relationship-oriented, but not in the usual, traditional way society finds acceptable. My impressions of regular couples--who are together all the time, every night, don't have sex with anyone else--is that they're co-dependant and don't let the other person be themselves (I've a couple of friends in such relationships and they turn me off a bit.). For me, a relationship is not something I should work for, isn't something I should struggle to find, is not someone I'm gonna settle with. It needs to be someone that I fit with and our chemistry needs to be a mutual bolt of lighting. There will be understanding. There will be space given to one another. There will be togetherness, but also respect and space given to the other person. Frankly, most people, straight or gay, are so fucking insecure and co-dependant that I don't think I'll ever find this type of man.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Aug 12, 2013 5:07 PM GMT
    Humans are social animal so life time monogamous relationship depends on a) how long that life time is and, b) personality traits.

    For the human a life time monogamous relationship is not actually part of their natural instinct, it is more of a societal imposed norm. So humans have to over come there own natural instinct in order to enter into a life time monogamous relationship. The ones that will find it the least difficult are introverts. However, even introverts have difficulties with such a concept because their preference is solitude.

    A life time relationship between two people really needs to be defined by both parties to be successful.
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    Aug 12, 2013 5:20 PM GMT


    PR said, " My impressions of regular couples--who are together all the time, every night, don't have sex with anyone else--is that they're co-dependant and don't let the other person be themselves (I've a couple of friends in such relationships and they turn me off a bit.)."

    Thankfully that's only your impression based on an extremely limited sampling. icon_wink.gif

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codependency
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    Aug 12, 2013 5:30 PM GMT
    PR_GMR saidInteresting post. I'm relationship-oriented, but not in the usual, traditional way society finds acceptable. My impressions of regular couples--who are together all the time, every night, don't have sex with anyone else--is that they're co-dependant and don't let the other person be themselves (I've a couple of friends in such relationships and they turn me off a bit.). For me, a relationship is not something I should work for, isn't something I should struggle to find, is not someone I'm gonna settle with. It needs to be someone that I fit with and our chemistry needs to be a mutual bolt of lighting. There will be understanding. There will be space given to one another. There will be togetherness, but also respect and space given to the other person. Frankly, most people, straight or gay, are so fucking insecure and co-dependant that I don't think I'll ever find this type of man.


    While I may perceive a relationship as co-dependent as you do, who are we to judge? I have been single all but a few years of my life and it is my fear of co-dependency that has been a barrier to me committing. I find relationship oriented people have far less of this type of fear.
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    Aug 12, 2013 5:39 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk saidHumans are social animal so life time monogamous relationship depends on a) how long that life time is and, b) personality traits.

    For the human a life time monogamous relationship is not actually part of their natural instinct, it is more of a societal imposed norm. So humans have to over come there own natural instinct in order to enter into a life time monogamous relationship. The ones that will find it the least difficult are introverts. However, even introverts have difficulties with such a concept because their preference is solitude.

    A life time relationship between two people really needs to be defined by both parties to be successful.


    Perhaps we use monogamy in too much of an absolute term. Suppose you have a couple who says no anal sex outside the relationship but are okay with beating off with a stranger? Having a zero tolerance policy towards infidelity set ups another reason for failure but there has to be some sense of commitment by both parties. When someone cheats in a relationship it is not the action that is so harmful has the feeling of being deceived. So it is my humble opinion that it is better to be open and honest from the beginning than to impose a set of don't you dares that even the person making the rules is not sure he can fulfill.

  • PR_GMR

    Posts: 3831

    Aug 12, 2013 5:41 PM GMT
    meninlove said

    PR said, " My impressions of regular couples--who are together all the time, every night, don't have sex with anyone else--is that they're co-dependant and don't let the other person be themselves (I've a couple of friends in such relationships and they turn me off a bit.)."

    Thankfully that's only your impression based on an extremely limited sampling. icon_wink.gif

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codependency


    How does your relationship work, Bill? I'm just curious.
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    Aug 12, 2013 6:28 PM GMT
    meninlove said

    PR said, " My impressions of regular couples--who are together all the time, every night, don't have sex with anyone else--is that they're co-dependant and don't let the other person be themselves (I've a couple of friends in such relationships and they turn me off a bit.)."

    Thankfully that's only your impression based on an extremely limited sampling. icon_wink.gif

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codependency


    Your reference defined codependency well. It is not how much time you spend with one another, why wouldn't you spend a lot of time with someone you love, but rather the reasons you are dependent on one another. Being emotionally bound to one another is not the same as staying with someone because you believe you or your partner literally can't survive without the other's help. The former is what love is all about, it is easy to view the latter as an illusion of love.

    Now my question for you two. What was it like when you first met? Was it a blazing fire or a peaceful, "I think this could work" feeling. Was it initially based on a very strong physical attraction or was there more of a feeling of how great the overall package was and the physical attraction didn't diminish nor did it overshadow the other qualities. I sometimes wonder whether a strong physical attraction can be a distraction and make people overlook all the reasons a relationship with this person will NOT work. The sexual attraction may peak too early, leading to a crash and burn scenario. On the other hand if there is initially an attraction that is not just purely physical then it has room to grow and become hotter when as you get to know one another. It is like being given your gifts slowly over time rather than all at once.
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    Aug 12, 2013 6:35 PM GMT


    OK, we'll try to answer both of you, although we think it's important to consider that relationships others may define or see as codependent are actually not.

    lol, I'm glad we came back to house for coffee (over at a neighbour's on the next block doing volunteer work as she has fibromyalgia AND peripheral neuropathy and can't do things herself)


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    Aug 12, 2013 6:51 PM GMT

    "What was it like when you first met? Was it a blazing fire or a peaceful, "I think this could work" feeling. "

    Both. Although Bill had a sure feeling at the get go, I panicked and called Mom and Dad after 4 dates because it was 'gettin' awful hot in here,' lol. I was terrified I might not feel the same way (he was quick, but oddly calm about it)and I didn't want to hurt him.

    "Dad, I met this guy and I really like him but I think it's not going to work!"

    Dad: " Oh for Christ's sake, you went down that road in your head already? Look, when are you going to see the guy again?"
    Me: "In about an hour or so, at his work."
    Dad: "OK, now that you're already obsessing over this, the moment you see him you're going to know either way."
    Me: "Er..what?"
    (Mom in background, 'Merciful Miniver, Neil, don't be such an ass, let me talk to him!')

    Dad, sarcastically, "Your mother wants to talk to you."

    Mom: "Douglas, if you can use his toothbrush, you're in love with him."
    Me:" I..I.."
    (Dad in background laughing,'Jesus Christ Alison, you're nuts, you know that?')

    This had the remarkable effect of making me calm down and give a jittery laugh.

    I went to Bill's work and there he was, sweaty, greasy hair, a few holes in his sweater and a charming dusting of dandruff on his shoulders (he'd been up all night worrying about this date and had slept in, so had to fly to work dressed in his on-the-floor-from-yesterday's-gardening-clothes). He turned beet red.

    I stood there, jaw loosened from this odd calm feeling that came over me as I realized, without doubt, that I was in love.






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    Aug 12, 2013 6:59 PM GMT

    "Was it initially based on a very strong physical attraction or was there more of a feeling of how great the overall package was and the physical attraction didn't diminish nor did it overshadow the other qualities."

    Hmmm..neither of us considered each other a package, we were too busy exploring the ways each of our voices and our appearances and our smells and our ways of moving our bodies and facial expressions blended to make the whole that was Bill, and the whole that was me. On top of that was what we talked about. And yikes, we never shut up. We took it in turn talking to each other until 4ams on our dates. We shared tragedies, triumphs, faux pas we'd made in public, what we discovered we could do for others, and the pleasant resonance that came with discovering our compatibilities and our differences.

    There was lots of physical attraction (still is) but we paced that, knowing from the past how easily one can burn a fire too fast and too hot to the point of extinguishing it, ditto for ROMANCE. I cannot, and Bill cannot stress the importance of this last capitalized thing.



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    Aug 12, 2013 7:01 PM GMT

    "On the other hand if there is initially an attraction that is not just purely physical then it has room to grow and become hotter when as you get to know one another. It is like being given your gifts slowly over time rather than all at once."

    Yes, this, although we think the measurement of time is different for each couple.
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    Aug 12, 2013 7:16 PM GMT


    PR said, "How does your relationship work, Bill? I'm just curious."

    Doug has weaknesses where I have strengths. I have weaknesses where Doug has strengths. It only gets a little tense when we both have the same weakness, or the same strength (tug of war! lol)

    -Bill

    PS We also play Masters Of Guilt. Trollileo can tell you about that, he's seen us do it and cracked up. He stayed here about a week or so last year and spent 24/7 with us, so got a good view of what our relationship is like.

    -Doug
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    Aug 12, 2013 7:17 PM GMT

    Now I feel naked.

    -Bill

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    Aug 12, 2013 8:03 PM GMT
    meninlove said
    Now I feel naked.

    -Bill


    Oh yeah? Well I killed the topic.

    -Doug

    Anything else? Or did we saccharine you guys to death?
  • PR_GMR

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    Aug 12, 2013 8:06 PM GMT
    meninlove said

    PR said, "How does your relationship work, Bill? I'm just curious."

    Doug has weaknesses where I have strengths. I have weaknesses where Doug has strengths. It only gets a little tense when we both have the same weakness, or the same strength (tug of war! lol)

    -Bill

    PS We also play Masters Of Guilt. Trollileo can tell you about that, he's seen us do it and cracked up. He stayed here about a week or so last year and spent 24/7 with us, so got a good view of what our relationship is like.

    -Doug


    Interesting. What is 'Masters Of Guilt?'
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    Aug 12, 2013 8:17 PM GMT
    I rather just go with the flow.. I find all my preferences.. Well not ALL of they... fly out the door in real life when I meet a guy I just naturally take a liking to.. not to say I have gotten any dates yet... A flaw of being closeted XD
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    Aug 12, 2013 8:20 PM GMT
    @ PR: The Masters Of Guilt - how we end fights or arguments.

    Me (or Bill): I'm sorry, it's my fault. I could have worded that a lot better. *looks contrite*

    Bill: No, it was me. I was pretty hot headed and an asshole.

    Me: But I was a complete jerk and said nasty stuff that wasn't true.

    Bill: Yeah but I got all pouty and martyr.

    Me: Not nearly as bad as me being a monster.

    Bill: No you're not. I'm rotten.

    Me: No, I'm rotten.

    Bill: I'M the guilty one here.

    Me: I'm guiltier.

    Bill: No I am. I kill small children and bury them in the backyard.

    Me: Well I torture kittens and set them on fire. So I am way more guilty.

    Like that.
    icon_lol.gif
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    Aug 13, 2013 2:55 AM GMT
    Guys you better be careful I'm sure this is going straight to the NSA!

    Thanks for all the feedback. What I read into this however is that the attraction was multidimensional which is what I meant by "the whole package". I think the challenge with so many looking for a relationships is that most of the venues focus who how physically attracted we are to someone. Hence we get threads like, "how do ugly people find love." But long lasting attraction is multi-dimensional. A guy with a homely face can easily end up with a guy with a classically handsome one because the former has so many other qualities to attract the latter. On nearly all internet sites like this there is far too much emphasis how photogenic someone is. That, in my opinion can be a distraction at best and downright misleading at worst. I'm not talking about whether they turn out looking like their photos or not. I'm saying that attraction is just not 2 dimensional.
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    Aug 13, 2013 3:06 AM GMT
    lol, we are so on the same page, friendormate.

    Well, maybe those recording at the NSA will learn a ting or two. icon_wink.gif

    Thanks for coming back, we were getting worried we'd sent you into a diabetic coma with all the sugar. icon_lol.gif

    You know, there are so many kinds of relationships that work out so well. People have to work with their limitations and their strengths. For example, some people find certain aspects of relationships rather claustrophobic. They have open relationships that mitigate this, as the concept of being free that way relieves their emotional claustrophobia, and guess what? They don't necessarity go through with it (stepping out with another) and for many when it does happen it's an occasional experience.

    We don't doubt their veracity when they say it works, because clearly, for them, it does.

    warmest regards (with a little love thrown in for good measure) -us guys
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    Aug 13, 2013 4:44 PM GMT
    I do think some open relationships evolve while naturally approaching monogamy. There's a danger in creating high expectations or a list of taboos early on that could end up being a reason to break up.

    Back to what drives us to someone, I think most people don't understand the complexity of attraction. As men, we try to compartmentalize what we like about someone into two nice boxes: the physical appearance and the personality. I feel it is so much more complex and intertwined. As I see it, you two are attracted to the essence of one another. I love that word because it encompasses so many aspects of what draws one person to another. When people talk about their type they often list physical attribute. They then flip through profiles looking for "this type". Once they see a profile they like, their imagination fills in the rest and presumes they will be attracted to the essence. That it seems is how most people in the modern day look for love or sexual encounters. They are often disappointed when the person's essence doesn't match their expectations. I wonder how many profiles people pass by because the subject is not photogenic but may very well have the essence they are dying to find.

    I have another question for meninlove. How old were you when you met and had either of you been in any long-term relationships before?


  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11406

    Aug 13, 2013 6:15 PM GMT
    friendormate said
    AMoonHawk saidHumans are social animal so life time monogamous relationship depends on a) how long that life time is and, b) personality traits.

    For the human a life time monogamous relationship is not actually part of their natural instinct, it is more of a societal imposed norm. So humans have to over come there own natural instinct in order to enter into a life time monogamous relationship. The ones that will find it the least difficult are introverts. However, even introverts have difficulties with such a concept because their preference is solitude.

    A life time relationship between two people really needs to be defined by both parties to be successful.


    Perhaps we use monogamy in too much of an absolute term. Suppose you have a couple who says no anal sex outside the relationship but are okay with beating off with a stranger? Having a zero tolerance policy towards infidelity set ups another reason for failure but there has to be some sense of commitment by both parties. When someone cheats in a relationship it is not the action that is so harmful has the feeling of being deceived. So it is my humble opinion that it is better to be open and honest from the beginning than to impose a set of don't you dares that even the person making the rules is not sure he can fulfill.


    What you are failing to realize is those are your beliefs and value system. Not everyone is going to share your same feelings. So you have to discuss it with the person you want to be partners with and see if they are willing to accept such a compromise. If they are not then either you move on or you agree to accept how your partner wants the relationship to work. However, it is your choice to agree or not and if you agree, but then cheat on that agreement, then it is you that is responsible for lying because you agreed to abide by the said agreement; you did not agree to just 'try'.

    In my personal opinion, this is why I am completely against marriage licenses for everyone. For one, it is a contract, but with only a set of rules created by the government in which neither party has any say in the rules of the contract between the two peopele; this is why you need a pre-nup. Secondly, it is basically a form of voluntary slavery contract, where each person owns the other. If two people chose to stay together for life, then shouldn't need a legal paper contract to bind them together. We are each individuals with the right to live life as we personally choose. I think the biggest problem in a marriage is the contract license. If you didn't have that, then you would always keep trying to make sure the other person knows your love. With a contract you simply get lazy and say, I don't care because we have a contract now, so I can get as fat as I want or I can drink all I want, etc. and they have to stay with me.
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    Aug 13, 2013 8:20 PM GMT
    AMoonHawk said
    friendormate said
    AMoonHawk saidHumans are social animal so life time monogamous relationship depends on a) how long that life time is and, b) personality traits.

    For the human a life time monogamous relationship is not actually part of their natural instinct, it is more of a societal imposed norm. So humans have to over come there own natural instinct in order to enter into a life time monogamous relationship. The ones that will find it the least difficult are introverts. However, even introverts have difficulties with such a concept because their preference is solitude.

    A life time relationship between two people really needs to be defined by both parties to be successful.


    Perhaps we use monogamy in too much of an absolute term. Suppose you have a couple who says no anal sex outside the relationship but are okay with beating off with a stranger? Having a zero tolerance policy towards infidelity set ups another reason for failure but there has to be some sense of commitment by both parties. When someone cheats in a relationship it is not the action that is so harmful has the feeling of being deceived. So it is my humble opinion that it is better to be open and honest from the beginning than to impose a set of don't you dares that even the person making the rules is not sure he can fulfill.


    What you are failing to realize is those are your beliefs and value system. Not everyone is going to share your same feelings. So you have to discuss it with the person you want to be partners with and see if they are willing to accept such a compromise. If they are not then either you move on or you agree to accept how your partner wants the relationship to work. However, it is your choice to agree or not and if you agree, but then cheat on that agreement, then it is you that is responsible for lying because you agreed to abide by the said agreement; you did not agree to just 'try'.

    In my personal opinion, this is why I am completely against marriage licenses for everyone. For one, it is a contract, but with only a set of rules created by the government in which neither party has any say in the rules of the contract between the two peopele; this is why you need a pre-nup. Secondly, it is basically a form of voluntary slavery contract, where each person owns the other. If two people chose to stay together for life, then shouldn't need a legal paper contract to bind them together. We are each individuals with the right to live life as we personally choose. I think the biggest problem in a marriage is the contract license. If you didn't have that, then you would always keep trying to make sure the other person knows your love. With a contract you simply get lazy and say, I don't care because we have a contract now, so I can get as fat as I want or I can drink all I want, etc. and they have to stay with me.


    I actually don't have an opinion either way about whether I need monogamy or not but I do want one to be open and honest. I think I could be happy in a monogamous relationship at this point is my life but it is not an absolute requirement and I'd prefer it not be so with my partner.

    I'd like to take some issue with your second paragraph. I've known unmarried straight and gay couples who get lazy and take each other for granted. Even if no legal contract is in place the process of leaving someone after being together for so many years is too long a bridge for many to cross. In fact I have one friend who married his partner of 13 years only to leave him a year later.