In Part Two of this series, Ken Page, LCSW, discusses the difference between sexual attraction that stems from deprivation and attraction that comes from inspiration. See Part One here.
Learning to Squint Like an Artist
If you’ve ever seen an artist working on a portrait, you’ll notice that oftentimes they’ll squint as they work. I asked an artist about this once and she said to me,
I squint because it helps me focus on the essence of my subject and it doesn’t distract me by their harsh outlines.
We need to do that in our dating life.
It’s so easy to get lost in that hard and rigid and instant assessment of someone’s imperfections, but it serves us better to simply sense their spirit and notice and taste the connection with them. And if it’s a good one, and you keep noticing it and riding with it, that is what makes attractions grow. As we start caring more deeply about someone, invisible tendrils begin to grow, in our thinking, in our sexual imaginings and longings and in our growing sense of dependence on this person. Our psyche, our sexuality, and our heart begin to create an attachment to that person. And to make him our own, or her our own.
When we build the muscle to exercise, our bodies need to create new capillaries to feed it. When we create new love, something similar happens. New neural pathways and emotional pathways are formed. New rituals and new sense memories are created. There is a new appreciation for sense and touch, for sexual activities and emotional needs. An entire web of new connections gets created inside of us as our hearts allow this one stranger to become our loved one. So we become specialized in them in so many ways. And that’s why breakups can hurt with real physical pain because these lovingly billed tendrils are just ripped out. That’s an experience of anguish.