What does passion mean to you?
What does passion look like/feel like to you and do you experience that in your marriage? Have you always felt passion towards your spouse or maybe you once did and don’t anymore?
I am married to my best friend, and that is what it feels like as well as far as intimacy is concerned. Almost a feeling of roommates with the occasional benefit. I may have experienced fleeting moments of passion, and I don’t think my husband does at all. I long for the feeling, I want my husband to want me, to desire me. When you know it is more of a one-sided feeling, it is more difficult to stay in that mindset and feel passionate when it is not reciprocated. Intimacy for us has always seemed more like a transaction to me.
I think passion comes in many different shapes and sizes, but in my experience it almost never resembles the cover of a romance novel. My wife and I have been separated a great deal over the course of our marriage,, because of military deployments, employment, and even an extended separation while my wife was caring for her parents due to declining health. Our relationship certainly was more passionate, as a general rule, during times of reunion. Some were more than others, of course. Even then, it didn’t take long for things to return to “ordinary”. I think as a rule, familiarity is the enemy of passion, but I don’t know if I would say that was a bad thing. There is something comforting in being present without being consumed. I enjoy my quiet evenings with my best friend.
Oh yeah, we are both pretty passionate people, in the past there were times that passion has looked more like hate, and sometimes it looks more like love. 😉 (Passion= strong and barely controllable emotion.)
I don’t know that I would say that I would describe myself of what *I* imagine a “sexually passionate” person would look like. But, I have passions that drive me to be all I can be sexually. My expressions of that aren’t the ‘loud, flamboyant, flaunting my sexuality’ kind of thing. I’m more the ‘quieter, deeper, more soulful, always wanting to be better’ kind of person. My husband does not hear screams from my mouth, but he definitely can see fire in my eyes, when it’s there…. speaking of sexual passion, but I realize it can be true when my passion comes out in anger as well. LOL
When I think about “passion”, I often go to something I remember being told (via written word) and it actually has to do with conflict, because this gave my husband and I A LOT of hope! (We have never been one of those “we are best friends, we never fight” kind of couples.) This has been our experience. this describes us….
“Handling your conflict well will lead to an intimate relationship. Your disagreements create sparks and relational intensity, which, if handled correctly, produce deep emotional connection. Every time you successfully work through a conflict, the two of you will be a little closer. Each resolved conflict brings a greater knowledge of one another, which results in a greater love for one another.
Resolved conflicts are one of the main avenues to passion.” – Dr. David Clarke
You want some passion, find some conflict. 🙂
**disclaimer: a couple needs to learn to handle conflict well. When handled poorly, it “will inevitably lead to a dead relationship. It won’t die immediately, but it will die over time, a slow, agonizing death. Every time you fail to resolve a conflict, you’re a little further apart. Eventually, you are miles apart, and no love is left.”
I’m guessing there is a tendency in many marriages, especially where children are being raised for the couple to feel more like business partners or roommates. We often feel this way and we love each other deeply.
Admittedly, I’m a HD, touch love language guy. So for me passion means desire, longing, wanting, and active enthusiastic lovemaking. DW, as the LD, responsive only, non touch, busy mom not so much. 🙂 We do our best to hold tight to each other and our commitment to each other.
Like Tim, I am an HD kind of guy, and passion for me includes being sexually desired by my DW, frequent and enthusiastic love making, etc. I have always felt sexual passion for my DW from day one, and I tell her this every time we make love.
My DW is a ‘responsive desire’ kind of woman and is sexually more passive than I am. Hence I don’t really have the experience of being sexually pursued by my spouse, which I miss (she was a bit more of a pursuer in the early days of our relationship).
I also agree with SC; handling conflicts successfully absolutely increases passions and intimacy!
I can relate to this, I think. At some points in our marriage (13+ years), it really did feel like we were roommates with great friendship chemistry but hardly any romantic chemistry. We had long periods with very little sex. It didn’t help at all that I started off our marriage with ED issues (in spite of being young and in pretty good shape). I also suffered from low T until I got tested and treated. As a result, the second half of our marriage so far has been better than the first half. I’m more attracted to my DW now than when we got married. We have frequent sex (2-3 times a week). I feel blessed and hope others can experience the sort of improvement my DW and I have had after some pretty terrible years romantically.
I still long, however, for more passion. To me, passion isn’t just about wanting and/or saying yes to sex but having a playful romance that desires not just sex but the little and big things that constitute romance. (To be sure, this is just my own idea of what passion is.) Passion is about wanting to know what the other desires—maybe a trip to a cabin, maybe a nice dinner at a French restaurant with a show afterwards, maybe for one to wear a certain shirt or blouse the spouse likes for some reason—and then indulging the spouse in that thing. Passion to me is enjoying being married while still keeping alive the early fires that first made one want to be with the other. I love sex, but I really love sex because it’s associated with romance rather than loving romance because it’s associated with sex. I feel that romance should constitute a connection from the most sexual moments to the most mundane, from those moments where the spouse is “lover” to those that the spouse is “best friend” and making one’s spouse feel loved and treasured in all those moments. To me, passion is when one’s heart can’t help but want to make all of the spouse’s wildest dreams (and also most mundane dreams) come true. Obviously, this is very idealistic and hard to live up to in the real world, but it’s what I long for in my own marriage.
Passion means a lot to me. It means we are in a relationship where the level of engagement is high, the willingness to put in effort is keen, the desire to enjoy each other more is vibrant, the emotions are overflowing, and our drives are firing!
Perhaps the passion you are looking for is rooted in a marital bond of love that is deep, caring, selfless, kind, intimate, understanding, and even silly. A love you know is constant and can be counted upon. A love that enjoys being together and appreciates giving space. A love that overlooks little things and relishes deep communication. A love that surprises us with joy (credit to C.S. Lewis). A love that is steadfast and secure.
I look at other things I am passionate about: helping young people see what marriage was meant to be and avoid unnecessary mistakes; being a lifelong learner and exploring theories about everything; finding and appreciating beauty wherever it exists; color; and the incredible, infinite, indescribable grace of God. These things grab my attention, they inspire me, they engage my emotion and I can’t help speaking out about them. They change the way I live. Do those things apply to my husband? Yes. Just this evening, I had to apologize to some teenagers because I was talking about him (I had advised a girl to break up with her boyfriend who raised a LOT of red flags and seems almost certain to become an abusive partner, and to instead look for a man like my DH.) A moment later I just couldn’t help commenting that DH really is everything to me. (Aside from Christ.) Whenever I think about him, there is an undercurrent (even among the humdrum of daily life, and yes, the inevitable irritations of two humans living together), a soundtrack, almost, of the love and connection we have. He is unique and precious and I can’t imagine loving anyone else as much as I love him, or being as close to anyone else as I am to him. I have perfect confidence in his love, similar to the confidence I have in God’s love because DH models it that well for me, and I feel accepted and complete. And I want to tell anyone who happens to be nearby.
So, yeah, I think I am passionate about him, and it does translate well into the bedroom, but without the heart of it, the sex would just be going through the motions.
Edited to fix late night punctuation errors!