Tuesday, May 1, 2012

**Is it possible to be in love with more then one person**: a friendly debate- Pt. 1 by Jersey Campbell, NYC Robert, and KV Sart

We've got another friendly discussion between a few of the Wannabe Writers who regularly contribute to VW. KV Sart joins the discourse between NYC Robert and Jersey Campbell as they try to figure out if it is possible to be in love with more then one person simultaneously. 

In Pt. I, the opening statements are made by each party and they establish their positions on the subject. Read, and be merry.


So get this, Jersey Campbell has a teammate this time. He’s tired of getting his ass whooped by himself.

LMFAO. I’m ready for this challenge.

It is not possible.

If one is in love with someone it means that they love almost all of their attributes, the good and the bad. But to maintain that type of feeling for someone it cannot be carried over to another at the same time. It simply is just impossible. How could someone claim to love someone, which takes more than fifty percent of thought, and be able to love another simultaneously?

Possible arguments:

Anyone who’s naïve could simply say, “Well look at countries where men have multiple wives.” That’s true they do have multiple wives, but do you really think they love any of them? Their company is simply for pleasure. How often do they actually have real conversation?

KV Sart

You ask the wrong question, or rather, you start at the wrong point.  Love is not a concrete object that has a definition that we all might agree on.  It is an abstract concept whose properties can only be experienced subjectively, albeit dependent on another subject.

In the mundane sense of love, it seems very reasonable to think an individual might love more than one person at once.  You love the various members of your family and friends, do you not? 

I think it’s clear that the question is directed at romantic love, but I use the previous example to make a point about semantics and how we use language as a blanket for abstract concepts.  The word love, on its own, can mean whatever to whomever.  Before you dive into the question of whether or not it is possible to be in love with more than one person at once, you must first ask yourself what you believe love means, or at the very least, what kind of love do you want?

I think perhaps a better question might be, is it possible for an individual to be wholly, romantically, committed to more than one other person at once?  If this is the question, personally, I think the answer is no.  If two individuals are in a committed relationship, there is a certain amount of trust between the two that there is no physical or psychological straying from the commitment.  Now, there certainly may be, and I think it is fair to say there are, committed partners who have agreements of open relationships, and, in fact, some relationships with more than two partners.  The notion of a committed relationship, as with love, is merely a subjective construction, and it is up to the members of the partnership to set the boundaries of the commitment.

Jersey Campbell

Before we continue with this mental ass-whooping I'm about to hand to both of you in a non-perishable can (nobody said KV was on my “team”), aren't we forgetting something? I thought we would begin this discussion at a more friendly point. Remember? We said we'd begin by figuring out where we agree, then discovering where are disagreeances lie and devising a way to eliminate them, or at least come to compromise (this is what we said at the end of the last discussion/debate) I agree with you Mr. Sart, we need to set up the pillars of discussion before we dive into this thing. Why are we making definitive statements about the topic of discussion already? Have I had a chance to say anything yet? Let's back up son, we need some order in the court. Or we could continue down this road that will inevitably end with you crying in the back of your mom's car with a lolli-pop in your mouth while listening to Prince. Either way is fine with me.

The best way to begin this discussion is to define love as we will be using it. I wanted to stray away from the traditional definition of love because I am sure to come out on the wrong side if we do. I will simply state what I believe love to be, and we will try and figure out: 1) if this makes any sense, and 2) if it is possible to love more than one person using this definition.

Love is a tricky feeling to put into words, no matter how we look at it. When we say we love someone, we are telling this person that you care for them and you wish them well in life, whether it involves you or not. Love is a selfless feeling that can quickly turn selfish. We don't business with selfish love. Maybe I am incapable of this romantic love that Mr. Sart is speaking of, but I think love should not entail wanting to spend the rest of your life with another person. Even if it does, it is still totally conceivable that you could be in love with another. For fear of being too long-winded in my opening statement, I will stop here and let you two continue. I'll save the big guns for later. 

I'd like to know what you both think of my definition and whether you agree, then we may move on. And yes, I am taking this debate by the reins and driving it in the direction I want it to go, both of you have no say in the matter.

K.V. Sart

I agree that love is a feeling.  Perhaps that is the one thing we can all agree on.  It is something that is felt from within, and when it is experienced, it occurs in the present without reasons or parameters.  I think the trouble we run into when we try to define something like love is that we tend to go back and look, in retrospect, at the times when we thought we were *"in love" and give reasons for why we felt how we did, but when you are in the moment of the experience, you do not think "Oh, I love this person for this, this and this reason" rather you just ride the feeling.

I guess I would say that that is how I define *"in love". Being completely immersed in the beauty (or pleasure or ease or contentment or..., you get my point) of a shared experience with another person, without needing to think about why you feel it, how you came to feel it, or how the feeling plays into the future.  For this reason, I tend to agree with Jersey that love doesn't need to be about spending the rest of your life with someone.  Certainly positive love relationships tend to work out in such a way that people are able to spend significant portions of their lives together, but as far as the experience of love is concerned, I would say that it is an emotion of being completely present, so it makes little sense to include a time requirement within its definition.

Of course, there is another element to the type of love that we seem to be discussing.  How does sex play into the love equation?  Certainly sex alone does not necessitate being *"in love", but in the same respect, I can be completely immersed in the beauty of a shared experience with someone with whom the sexual urge is not present, and then do not see myself as being *"in love" with that person or wanting something more than platonic love.

*note - I've separated the notion of general love (or the universal type of love one might feel for family or friends or all beings), from being "in love", which one might feel with a partner.  The "in love" is what i think the original question is concerned with.

That's all for Pt. 1. Check back later on for Pt. 2

UPDATE: Pt. 2 is now ready for your viewing pleasure. 

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