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Those Other Factors

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My dear Jack, you’re letting your hormones decide for you, and you’re going to make a mistake. Of course sexual attraction matters in a relationship. But it’s not the all and be all. There are other things to consider. Character matters. And so does temperament. And cultural values – things like taste, exposure, knowledge… The key is to have a balance. That balance is an aggregation of critical factors like character as well as custom factors. “I like a woman who sings and looks like Adele” is a custom factor for example. It’s a peculiar desire.Sex can blind reason. It functions like a mist, blocking the view – an enveloping fog beclouding clear insight. Sex can block judgment. Which is why a terrible relationship that’s entirely based on sex can last so long. The parties know they’re terrible for each other but they persist like each other’s destruction. Like a curse of the gods. There’s the head, heart and sex organs. If all you can relate to in this woman is her sex organs you’re in a compulsive bind. If you can’t even conversate with her how are you going to relate with her? And I‘m not talking about chattiness. That’s not necessarily communication. I’m talking about connectivity of the heart. The emotional component matters a lot in communication. In a relationship there has to be connectivity of the heart. Communication in a relationship is a combination of emotional, cultural and intellectual values. It’s easier to relate to someone you share cultural values with. Or you’ll be left hanging in a void of incomprehension. Cultural connectivity includes ability to have a decent phone or text conversation. If you have to be searching for what to discuss, or trying to forcefully cajole a conversation you’ll be disappointed. That probably means you have little in common emotionally, intellectually or culturally.

Cultural connectivity is very important in a relationship. You must both be aligned for long term relationship. Without it there’ll be inner irritation over things like fashion sense, conduct at functions, travel, dining… Cultural alignment affects even decoration of the house, the keeping of the house. Cultural alignment plays a role in the way the kids are brought up, what associations you make as a couple. Your cultural alignment will determine the church you attend, the clubs you join, the things you do together. Cultural alignment will even affect sensual attraction in marriage. Affects choice of tokens of sensuality. There’s Victoria’s Secret and there’s Ngozi’s Secret. Cultural alignment will affect the giving and receiving of gifts. Without alignment some gifts won’t be appreciated. Cultural alignment will determine what television programmes you can both watch together. Without cultural alignment, there’ll be pervasive and recursive irritability in the marriage. Gratuitous tolerance.

The point I’m trying to make is that you can’t base a marriage decision solely on sex, or on dreams about sex. The reason the sex is exciting now is because of that proverb by Solomon. Solomon said, “Stolen water is refreshing; food eaten in secret tastes the best.” Think what that means. After marriage the water will no longer be stolen, and there’ll be no secrecy about eating of the food. Which is why some young men lose interest in their wife after marriage. The sex is no longer stolen water. And so they go searching for another stolen water, secret gourmet. They don’t realize it’s not about the person, but the fact the sex has a secretive component. The woman soon begins to wonder why her husband is no longer attracted to her. It’s the stolen water syndrome.

The thing about the brain is that it records sexual experience in 6D – space-time plus sound and smell. But the brain can deconstruct the 6 dimensions such that each dimension is a slice of memory. Men derive mental enjoyment from chewing slices of memory cud of sexual encounter, like a cow chews cud. Porn operates on this cud principle. The brain is a data bank with random access memory made of slices of cud. The memory recall of mustiness can provide a mental aphrodisiac, driving compulsive behaviour. But you won’t have a wholesome relationship with a pornographic regard for women. A pornographic regard of a woman is independent of her personage, qualities and virtues. She’s objectivized. You’ve got to find balance. A wholesome relationship is a combination of factors. There are relationships that will fall to the ground once you remove the sex. The sex is the relationship. You should consider the sex exclusion test: Apart from sex what do you have in common? If we take the sex for granted can you live with her?

The base of a wholesome relationship is shared values. (Those values can come from religion). If you value honesty for example, does your girlfriend believe in honesty? If you value hardwork and believe in delayed gratification, does your girlfriend share the same belief? If you value fidelity does your girlfriend share your worldview? Does she value faithfulness? Without trust there’s no security in a relationship. There’ll be fears and suspicion. You shouldn’t marry someone you don’t trust. Marriage is too intimate for lack of trust. So we know values matter because it provides the foundation of commonality. If you’re both culturally aligned but don’t share the same values, the relationship will struggle. The thing about sex is that it can blind you to those other things that matter. When your locus is her mound, the perspective of your vanishing can easily be projected.

This lady you talk about… She seems as stimulating as the traffic light at Falomo junction. You have nothing to talk about! The only thing you do with each other is sex. She’s not your soul mate, can’t provide emotional succour. She’s not your friend essentially, just someone you sleep with. Yet friendship matters in a relationship, especially one pointing at the altar. Friendship aggregates life. With friendship your marriage will be less at risk. You have a basis for ongoing relationship. When you travel you’ll have something to discuss over the phone, other than when the fridge stopped working. I’d say take all these things into consideration before making your decision.

Your mentor, LA

© Leke Alder | talk2me@lekealder.com

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