married bees: do you develop intense attractions to people still?

posted 3 years ago in Relationships
  • poll: Have you developed an intense attraction/interest in anyone? What did you do about it?
    Yes : (9 votes)
    31 %
    No : (5 votes)
    17 %
    Act on it : (2 votes)
    7 %
    Ignore it & hope it goes away (it didn't) : (3 votes)
    10 %
    Ignore it & hope it goes away (it did) : (10 votes)
    34 %
    Talk to FI about it : (0 votes)
    Other (explain below) : (0 votes)
  • Post # 3
    Member
    1734 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: March 1998

    Oh, of course. I suspect he has as well at various points in our relationship/marriage.

    I sat and asked myself: Am I seeing this realistically? What do I really know about this person? I’d try to imagine a scenario where I ran off with these people, and what my life would be like 2 or 3 years into the relationship. I quickly concluded…probably pretty much the same. Maybe worse. Infatuation is intense and it’s going to happen.

    Our brains *love* those feel-good chemicals, and let’s be honest – the fire of infatuation burns differently than the love of a long-term relationship. It’s a drug high. We see someone, find ourselves fascinated, and every time we talk to that person, we’re learning something new. We fill in the gaps of what we don’t know with things we’d like to be there.

    You talk to someone long enough…and you realize they have baggage like anyone else. The stars begin leaving your eyes.

    It’s important to think longer term when you aren’t thinking in the clearest way. I don’t feel there’s anything wrong with being attracted to other people – acting on it is a problem. Flirting is a problem and so on. It’s not how you feel, but how you handle it.

    When those times happen (I’m not talking ‘he’s cute!’ but ‘Wow…’ sorts of situations here), it kicks my focus on my marriage into high gear. I start looking for novel experiences for us to do together. We go on more dates. The whole thing’s a garden that needs constant upkeep, and from time to time, like anything else, sometimes we’re all lazy gardeners. An attraction to someone else can be a reminder.

    On a long enough timeline, if my husband hasn’t yet, he’s probably going to find himself attracted to someone. He might meet someone with a mutual interest, get talking…and start thinking. That’s human nature. I can’t expect to be his *one and only*. I also can’t expect that for the next 50 years, or if I die or we divorce, he won’t find anyone else attractive…or he won’t for a moment consider what might be if he were with someone else.

    I do count on him to handle it the way I have – withdrawing if possible, limiting contact, putting more effort into the marriage, etc. But I don’t worry about it. Neither of us is dead, and that didn’t change when we signed a marriage license.

    …What did change is that we are now a family with obligations and commitments to one another that we both hope and intend to live up to.

    Post # 4
    Member
    3268 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2015

    I’ll preface this by saying that I’m not married, but I am in a commited relationship with my SO, have been for over 4 years, and we are heading towards being engaged. 

    Yes, I have actually experienced one strong physical and intellectual attraction to another guy while I’ve been with my SO, along with a few minor crushes. I limited contact and got to know what the person was really like from a distance, and learned they were quite awful and not someone I want to spend time with at all. It is certainly possible and highly likely that this will happen to most people, but if you handle it maturely before it goes too far, no harm is done and you learn a lot from it. In my case, I learned that this toxic type of guy (of which my high school ex is one) remains quite initially attractive to me, and I am extremely lucky to have found someone who is wonderful and not like that at all!

    In the situation I was in, I kept myself away from the person, made boundaries very clear to him (he was the type who pretends he is clueless about appropriate boundaries, while behaving badly but clearly being well aware of what he’s doing), and focused harder on my SO. And vented a lot to my friends. Soon enough I saw how truly unattractive this person was, and the problem was solved. 

    @CookieCreamCakes:  I think your metaphor for marriage as a garden and the partners as gardeners is lovely and spot-on. I might have to remember that for my future wedding vows! 🙂

     

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