ChristianMan72

Do you need each other, or are you just sharing life?

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This came up in another thread, so I thought I'd put the thought out here for some comment.

 

Do you feel that you fill real needs for each other, help and fulfill each other's lives (elaborate if you like)?

 

Or do you just share your lives, so you don't really have to have your spouse around, but you like it when they are there so you are not alone?

 

(And if you don't mind, let's leave the 'need for sex' out of the topic, that is another discussion entirely.)

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Not married, but I saw this topic come up in the other thread and I am intrigued by it.

 

I think ideally, a bit of both is actually best. When you're single, I think it's good to feel like you've crafted a life that you're happy with and proud of, without feeling like there's a gaping void that can't be filled (though obviously that becomes complicated if, say, you really want children). I didn't feel like I "needed a (wo)man" to complete my life when I was single. However, after I fell in love with my boyfriend, I definitely felt (and still do feel) like I needed HIM, as an individual, in my life. Being with him gives me more happiness, and is more fulfilling, than anything I've ever known was possible. But I had to know him as a person before I felt that need, and we do still have our independent lives, away from each other, that we do "share" with each other. And obviously, if something tragic were to happen to him, I wouldn't go throw myself off a cliff or anything, so I don't truly 'need' him in that sense.

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i think in the end that is a very personal and individual question - about the nature of your relationships in total...   do they fill needs or do they help you be less alone - and i think it's a tremendous question (and different than the previous threads).

 

For me - there is no question my wife makes my life better and makes me better - and i know, without ego here, that she says the same about her life with me.  

 

I can no more imagine the person i would have become without her - maybe because when she came into my life i was a bit of an uncertainty... maybe as we all are.   I thought i had my footing in life - good education and the earnestness of thinking i knew what i wanted to do with job and career, an optimistic outlook with gobs of wondering how on earth i would figure things out...  and the wounds of early loves and the anxieties and frustrations of how on earth i would date and hopefully marry and the rest of things so many people think about.

 

and that's how she entered my life.  and that's where she continues to enter my life every day.   as someone who believes in me - and laughs at my stupidness or my obstinacies - as someone who unflinchingly knows we make each other better and have simply encouraged one another not dared one another to be a good human being.

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and to add to that...   that is how i live my relationships broadly - with my best friends, confidantes, allies and mentors.   unflinching and trusting belief in one another.

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I'm a bit old-fashioned and believe that my life isn't complete without my other half. I know that's kinda anti-feminist, but it's what I believe.

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I think that once you find that special person for you, they make you a better person since they will be the ones to tell you when you're out of line or doing wrong and also treasure you at your best and worst. It can't be a bad thing to have someone by your side forever right :) ?

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I'm a bit old-fashioned and believe that my life isn't complete without my other half. I know that's kinda anti-feminist, but it's what I believe.

 

Nah, I think it'd only be anti-feminist if you thought women should feel incomplete without marriage, but men can be totally fine being single. Clearly, as you're a guy who feels the way you do, that is not the case.  :)

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I'm just going to preface this by saying it's a very loose metaphor, please don't extend it beyond what is reasonable. I know, I'm not married, but this is something I've been thinking about for awhile.

 

Before a baby is born, it doesn't need to breathe. Its life just does not require respiration to exist. But after the baby is born and takes its first breath, it needs to breathe to live. So, I think after you find a person who really complements you and enhances your life, it would be something akin to death (metaphorically) to remove them.

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I'm just going to preface this by saying it's a very loose metaphor, please don't extend it beyond what is reasonable. I know, I'm not married, but this is something I've been thinking about for awhile.

 

Before a baby is born, it doesn't need to breathe. Its life just does not require respiration to exist. But after the baby is born and takes its first breath, it needs to breathe to live. So, I think after you find a person who really complements you and enhances your life, it would be something akin to death (metaphorically) to remove them.

 

I love this metaphor!

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I love my husband. I can't imagine my life without him. He makes my life better in a million different ways.

 

But do I need him?

 

I feel like there's a difference between need and want--in fact, I remember learning this lesson waaaaay back in elementary school. I want him in my life. I would be devastated without him. But I don't need him to live. I don't even need him to live a full life. I was a complete person before him, I'm a complete person currently living my life entwined with another complete person, and I will be a complete person after him. (Statistically, he'll die before me, but hopefully not til we're both really old).

 

I think my perspective is colored because one of my sorority sisters became a widow in her 20s. Her newlywed husband was diagnosed with cancer and died. She and I aren't close, but we've kept up with each other through Facebook, so I watched her get married, stay by her husband's side until he died, grieve him, start to heal, fall in love again, and get married again.

 

At the beginning of our relationship, I would quip that if my then-boyfriend ever broke up with me, my back-up plan was to move back to France permanently and finally date women. France is my first love, and I honestly sacrificed her for my husband. Now that we've been together much longer and gotten married, I know that we'll be together til death do us part. But if something were to happen to him, after my initial grieving with our families, I would move back to France to heal.

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