Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Touch and Chemistry

You could say that I have a voracious sexual appetite. But I am very selective with whom I'd like to share this hunger. Even if a man is good looking, I still need some kind of natural chemistry on top of that. My body just shuts down and my legs clench tight at the thought of being touched by a person with whom I have no chemistry.

Moreover, when I've developed a physical bond with someone over time, I become mentally physically monogamous at a point. This takes time to develop. I am able to enter into more than one physically intimate relationship at a time without a problem, but once I've established a closer intimacy with someone, I can no longer enjoy a physical encounter with someone else.

For example, when you are getting over someone, it's hard to enjoy kissing a new person. I mean things like that.

And when you are getting over someone, you miss the person, and very specifically obsess about their touch.

I think the most natural thing to want and dwell on is the desire to be hold and kiss that person again, and of course also sleep with them.

This is just one way that Touch and Chemistry are so fascinating. The hand holding and cuddling that physical intimacy lends itself to are extremely personal and powerful forms of connecting with another person. When you have created that sort of bond, it is very painful to miss it - and you desire that kind of touching again.

And so I find myself especially fascinated with the idea of touch. I know that babies and kittens and puppies need to be handled and touched regularly in order to develop properly. I know that there is an innate human need for the other or others in society. I know that there is an idea of romantic love and companionship in life. I know that sex is a kind of hunger that motivates and needs to be fulfilled.

Perhaps we need to be loved and cared for. Perhaps intimate, caring touching are the body's way of externalizing (and then internalizing) kindness.

And so that makes me believe there is a need for kindness, and that kindness is a form of human capital - a thing which we possess and can choose to give and share.

With maturity I think we learn that kindness is the way to go. There's a lot of life lessons that will may lead a person to bitterness, harboring hate that translates into bad natured behavior; and then there's life lessons which point to the simple truth that kindness and doing the right thing are a good idea.

I suppose it's important not to covet kindness and become selfish when you more strongly desire someone physically. Kindness and touching should be enjoyed and should be part of what makes the world a better place.

Which does not help the pain felt in the absence of touch. Especially after you have had this intimacy in your life. Ignorance certainly helps here.

I believe pain is motivation. And so, if a breakup with someone where there was meaningful intimacy causes pain, then perhaps such a breakup would make you a better person. A new desire to be intimate and invite kindness into your life should manifest.

Often this is not the case. Often people become bitter, shut themselves off, grow hateful, self-destructive, damaged, obsessive, or selfish when they are heartbroken. When this happens, it is hard to understand breakups or the purpose of failure and failed relationships.

I'm really not sure, but the power and absence of touch are extremely compelling motivations. We are captivated by sex and the desire to be held and touched in an intimate and loving way. If this is somehow related to a drive towards kindness and compassion, then I think I understand. To hold and not to break.

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