How Love Can Include Friendship
“Love is not a matter of chance. Love is not blind.” – Richard R. Powell
Love encompasses a wide range of positive and powerful emotional and psychological states, from the strongest personal affection to the easiest personal pleasure, from platonic to romantic love to all-encompassing devotion. The idea that love is something that either happens suddenly or is a product of one’s surroundings often robs love of its true essence. For centuries lovers have tended to think of love as a physical bond, often believing that it can be separated from its spiritual source and therefore weakened. But a new view of love makes it not just a physical bond; it is a powerful emotion that can lead to a sense of well-being, and can also manifest itself in the alleviation of numerous other physical ills, such as: anxiety, asthma, back pain, headaches, indigestion, insomnia, heartburn, constipation, menstrual pains, urinary problems, weight problems, and a host of others.
When two people enter into romantic love they become deeply connected, and sharing physical intimacy becomes a natural, healthy and even desirable expression of those feelings. In fact, studies show that being intimate with another person often releases ‘feelings of wellbeing’, and researchers have found that close, caring relationships are correlated with higher levels of mental and physical well-being. In fact, in some circles of medical professionals, physical intimacy is seen as a primary indicator of health, and those who are romantically involved have been shown to be healthier and more satisfied with their relationships than those who are not.
When intimacy blossoms it may take actions on your part to sustain it. Love can’t be sustained if there is no deep commitment to each other. You may feel that you share a deep connection, but if you don’t have feelings of deep connection with the one you are with, it will die. To sustain a love relationship it needs to be made clear that you will love and remain connected with that partner, even if they aren’t the type of person who shares your passion for life.
Intimacy doesn’t need to take the form of romantic love, nor does it need to be between a husband and wife or between partners of the opposite sex. Even within relationships that are formed within the same gender, either of the partners may be involved in the physical attraction, but that is not the foundation of the relationship. Instead, these relationships are made up of feelings of friendship, care, respect, and other feelings that are shared through the special qualities of friendship, care, respect, and companionship. If you are with a person who is not your type, but you share the feelings of friendship, companionship, and other special qualities you will find yourself developing feelings for them just as you would if you were dating someone who shared the same attractions with you.
Romance, regardless of whether it is romantic love, affection, or any combination thereof, is a wonderful thing. However, if you want a truly healthy relationship you must be willing to make the necessary compromises and sacrifices in order to keep it alive and strong. Love in a true relationship is not just a matter of physical attraction. By making the proper decisions and showing the appropriate amount of respect for the other person involved, love can take on a new and more positive meaning in your life.