Love SOS – When you’re attracted to someone other than your partner

If you’re in a long term relationship, chances are, no matter how deep your commitment goes, sooner or later you might find yourself wildly attracted to someone else. That attraction can throw you into a sea of confusion.  What does it mean?  Should you act on it or try and squash it down? Can it be treasure to reconnect you to your partner? Is it a pattern?

This is complex moral, emotional and spiritual territory, one that only you can find your way through.  But here are some things for you to consider whilst you are trying to make sense of it.

1/Forget what you’ve been told about gender, sexuality and monogamy. There are loads of ideas flying around about sexuality that translate into what are sometimes presented as concrete facts.  Like, it’s men’s nature to have a roving eye whereas women tend to be innately monogamous. These notions tell us a lot more about ideas related to men, women and sexuality than they do about how individual people actually think and feel.  We can’t even begin to hope to get towards any truth until we live in a society where researchers aren’t so blinded by their own assumptions that they skew the questions they ask, and where social codes are such that people don’t censor the answers they give.  You are unique and your journey here in part involves discovering the truth about that uniqueness.  This also applies to how it plays out in the arena of love and sex.

2/Sometimes an attraction towards someone else points the finger of spiritual enquiry back to you. Have you eroded your connection with your own sexuality?  This is so easily done.  If you’re juggling a million jobs, responsibilities and roles, it’s hard to find the psychic space in which you can connect with your inner Love Goddess or God.  It is possible for us to split off we have lost touch with and project it on to someone else, so that they become the catalyst for our erotic feelings.  If that’s the case, you can reclaim them by taking your erotic needs seriously and paying attention to them. A sexual and affectionate connection to your partner really is the glue so think of ways of resolving this if you have lost that passion.

3/Sometimes an attraction towards someone else reveals what is missing in your existing relationship. This is a bit like the above.  If you spend your time with your partner arguing over bills and childcare and, these days, care of parents as well as working full time, have you squeezed out the erotic aspect of your connection?  All relationships turn in cycles.  Along with that, no one can be everything all the time.  If you are going through an erotic dry spell in your existing relationship, it doesn’t mean it’s gone forever.  It can be revived.

4/ There is no one single template for a successful relationship these days. Relationships can be monogamous, polyamorous (with multiple people involved), and they can be strong enough to survive affairs.   Perhaps controversially, author and marriage guidance counsellor Esther Perel suggests that an affair can spell the end of a cycle but doesn’t have to mean the end of a marriage (hop over to Inspire Your Soul to see an interview with her).  Psychologist Carl Jung (who himself was married and openly maintained a long term relationship with a mistress and muse) said that for relationships to deliver their alchemical potential, Eros had to be present, and that the people involved effectively stepped into a sealed psychic container.  People can have affairs when they have one psychic foot out of the door of a relationship, but they can also have an affair and be committed to the long term relationship that they have, and the psychic nature of that commitment is the key element most importantly being honest with yourself.

So where does all this leave you?  I would suggest following the psychic trail created by your feelings so that you can explore what your current experience is bringing to the forefront of your attention.  Aristotle said, “Anyone can become angry – that is easy, but to be angry with the right person at the right time, and for the right purpose and in the right way – that is not within everyone’s power and that is not easy.”  To paraphrase him, I would say anyone can become attracted to someone outside of a long term relationship.  But understanding what that attraction means, and then acting on what you discover in the process of psychic exploration is the path that will evolve your soul. Only you can be your own moral judge and only you can explore with honesty what it means to you, your soul and your relationship.

Loads of love,

Michele x

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