Even though I hold no desire to cheat on my boyfriend, I was curious about this video posted by The School of Life. When it comes to hearing about infidelity, whether through personal relationships or through celebrities/strangers, I do my best to remain non-judgmental: I am not in your shoes, nor have I spent one day as any other soul on this planet. I wasn’t there in your relationship or have a full understanding of what you went through.
Whenever I travel with others, I often am amazed how a different self emerges. You can know someone for many years but still not have access to all the sides of their persona. I promise that there is a point to this. It is to state that unless you’ve done extensive traveling with acquaintances and casual friends, it is impossible to gather a fair insight into what is going on in their lives.
Therefore, I believe it’s best not to make judgments without the full story.
Even if things are going great in your relationship, or you may not be interested in anyone at the moment, I still highly suggest this video about why couples have affairs. It’s a brief watch at around 3 minutes, and is packed with fascinating insight. It is also narrated by one of my favorite people in this world, philosopher Alain de Botton.
One of the most essential takeaways from the video is that every person in a couple will have different needs of closeness/distance. Everyone carries their own measure of what constitutes a healthy degree of love, and it’s important to respect what your needs. It’s equally important to value the comfort of your partner, which will more than likely contrast yours.
In my relationship, I know that I am more distant than my boyfriend, and that I prefer a lot of space. This isn’t a slight against him–it’s entirely due to my feline-like/introverted nature. It was such a relief to learn that I am not a jerk and that there isn’t anything wrong with his desire for more closeness. It’s a balancing act that needs to be addressed and felt out.
The video’s message is that affairs in relationships occur because of one person not getting enough closeness/distance. I can see this happening in friendships too, but instead of “cheating” we resort to spending less time with someone or hanging out with other friends.
It’s necessary to regard how you feel and know how other people sit on the spectrum of closeness/distance. When everyone’s needs are respected/validated, than we can work together despite our differences.
A final question: Where do I fall on the spectrum of closeness/distance? Do I tend to require more or less closeness/distance in any of my relationships?
(Sorry that was two questions :))
“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” –Plato
Image credit: pixabay.com
Title: Why People Have Affairs
Creator: The School of Life