Friday, November 2, 2012

Romantic Love Versus Mother Love

I wrote a while ago about how I loved my husband more than my child, which was certainly how I felt at the time. R was only a few months old then though, and now that she's older, with more personality, and we've had longer to bond (important as I'm usually slow-to-warm-up to people), this isn't true anymore. I love them equally now, though the feelings are very different.

I find mother love quite straightforward and don't really expect much from R in terms of emotional gratification. Of course I get totally fed up with her from time to time, but for the most part things are smooth and easy. I've only lost my temper with her a few times and while naturally we disagree occasionally, for the most part we are in close harmony.

With B, though, everything is quite different: passionate, full of emotional turmoil, screaming fights, laughing until we are dizzy, staying up until 3 am telling each other our most intimate secrets...Maybe because we met so young, we are very closely bonded. But our relationship has also preserved a lot of teenage-type emo drama (me storming out of the house telling him he's betrayed my trust in the most fundamental way, and I will carry that forever!!!: this was a fight over him forgetting to buy soy milk, and yes it was only a few months ago).

I was chatting online with someone about cheating spouses, and it occurred to me that infidelity is never a concern of mine. Even if B were to cheat on me (most unlikely), it wouldn't really matter because I know that body and soul B belongs to me. It's kind of like the way making a new friend doesn't really affect your relationship with your sister or mother.

The other side of it is that B doesn't have time to have a mistress, not just because of his job, child and other obligations, but because he already has one: me. Due to the way our relationship works, it's incredibly time-consuming. We spend SO much time on each other (which hasn't really changed since having a child: often a problem as now we have less time total, and so that time frequently comes at a cost of either sleep or productivity).

I wonder if this mellows out for most people, or if their relationship didn't work that way in the first place?


  1. that's incredible. jon and i definitely do not make time for each other as much since P (i mean, leaps and bounds here) and we've both cooled off significantly. although we might bicker and be rude, we almost never have a full out fight anymore...not that I miss it but I kinda miss some of the drama. lol. these days im too tired/stressed/worried to bother with a fight. I just don't have the energy for it!

    1. I must have some sort of special energy reserve, because even if it's 3 am and I haven't gotten enough sleep in days, I ALWAYS can find energy to cause drama with B. I actually really hate this about myself. If it were just us bonding positively, I think it would be incredible but as is, the proportion of good to bad is the same as for most married couples: there's just more of both. Sometimes I wish we were more like you and Jon!

  2. My husband and I met in high school, and I think the reason our relationship is so good... almost easy... is that we were best friends for a long time before dating even came to mind. I also find that since having Ginny we have had to give up sleep and personal time to spend time with each other.

    Also - I once freaked out at B-man for eating my last English muffin for breakfast, then finishing off my salad dressing at dinner. I screamed and yelled and said horrible things. I may have even taken my wedding ring off. :/ doh. It was dumb. I've matured a bit, and that type of drama doesn't appeal to me any more - mostly because I've noticed how much it actually hurts B's feelings when I say hurtful things. I guess that is the goal in hurtful words, but when I think about it, I don't actually want to hurt his feelings - I want him to understand me. So I've found better ways of getting my thoughts across.

    1. That's awesome that you have realized what your real motivations are. I am trying to mature too, but even though I should be (what with being relatively old, a mother, etc.) it's definitely a work in progress. Also, I am not always as nice as you and sometimes my goal really is to hurt B's feelings :(

      Learning to be a better person is definitely hard work at times.