As I get older, I’m beginning to understand more about why some relationships don’t end up working out or standing the test of time. I’ve come to the conclusion that people underestimate how important intimacy is in a relationship. I just finished watching Entourage, and it looks like Ari Gold is headed towards marital problems because of his lack of attentiveness to his wife and their relationship. He has a tendency to put other things before his relationship; in his case, his job, child, or friends, taking for granted that the relationship, and she, will always be there.
I’m not sure whether people are afraid, or simply don’t know how to have that intimate connection with their mate that is supercedes any other connection in their life, aside from the one with their God. They view the union as two separate entities coming together, but not as one cohesive unit. I’ve seen two people married, yet still living like they’re single. They pop into the marriage here and there to fulfill emotional and physical duties, but 90 percent of time they are with their friends and other people, living a very uncommitted life. You wouldn’t even know they were married unless they told you.
Children often add another dynamic to the relationship. Some men and women completely neglect their spouse/partner when a child is born, forgetting that that foundation needs to be just as strong in order to raise their child to be a loving, responsible individual. There are certain boundaries that need to be understood. I may alarm some when I state that a child should not take precedence over the marriage. For my religious folks, there are verses that support the theory of “God first, spouse second, children third.” However, some people fall more in love with their children than their partners, causing a rift in the relationship. In my opinion, pouring all the love into the child is a selfish way to protect themselves from the day-to -day woes of a marriage. Clinging to a child’s unconditional love allows a parent to have intimacy without the disappointments and frustrations associated with long-term, committed, adult relationships.
This is my second reference to The Cosby Show on my blog, but there are some fundamental values that that show showcased that are heavily overlooked today. We took it for granted then, but when we look back at Claire and Cliff’s relationship, nothing was more important than that. It was, in many ways, the basis of the entire show. They loved their kids, but it was very important that they made time for intimate moments with each other, aside from sex, and their kids understood those boundaries. Even their careers took a back seat to what was necessary for the union to work. Relationships don’t thrive on air. They need emotional, physical and spiritual fuel to work. Tons of marriages and relationships are surviving on air because people are too scared to commit 100 percent of their being to someone else. They’ll give it to their child, job or friends, and give 80 percent to their partner. And sadly enough, they don’t even realize what they are doing because they feel like getting married was a sufficient display of their commitment.
Some would call me an idealist, but I do want that marriage or relationship where I’m not thought of as a pronoun- “yeah, I’m with HER” as opposed to “we are together.” The “us” and “we” references provide a sense of intimacy and make me feel like he and I are in this together; that our bond is unbreakable and we are constantly taking steps to be closer, because that closeness helps us with the rearing of our children, careers, and life obstacles. Romantic love is great for shallow fulfillment, but intimate love is the deep, undeniable attachment between two people; one doesn’t work without the other. However, some people like to maintain their emotional independence within relationships because they feel more in control. The fear of dependence, heartbreak, or vulnerability makes them destroy their relationships from the inside out. Although intimacy isn’t the easiest thing for some individuals to grasp, it is necessary, from both men and women, on an everyday basis for a relationship to thrive. Some people understand that, and some never will.