What’s the biggest difference between love and lust?
Or is there any difference at all?
In a corny kind of way, love is about the craving of the heart, while lust is a craving of the loins.
But what’s the real deal behind love, relationships and promiscuity?
A relationship always seems perfect until lust or love creates a new equation. And we can try to resist it, but it’s not always possible.
[Quiz: Will you ever cheat on your partner? P.S. This quiz won’t lie!]
Love and lust in an orchard
The ebbs and flows of an ocean look mesmerizing.
But it needs the effect of the moon’s gravity to create the smooth and turbulent waves.
It’s the same thing with men and women, and love and relationships.
We experience times in love when we’re just not happy to be in a relationship.
And we experience other times when we can’t imagine living without that special someone.
But more than anything else, the fact remains that monogamy requires a lot of effort.
[Read: 10 sexy ways to make married sex feel like a one night stand!]
Being involved in a long term relationship, as a friend of mine says, is like “sitting in an orchard with different fruits and eating the same fruit every single day, because that’s the fruit you chose to eat first!”
That sounds quite depressing, but reality doesn’t really have to be as bad as it sounds. We could actually even call it the best tasting fruit, while all the other fruits are just plain poisonous. Whatever makes you happy and whatever helps you stay committed to the relationship.
But sometimes, the initial blaze of the relationship flickers to a dim, and eventually all we’re left with is a cold feeling all over. Sex too, can get quite monotonous after a while. That healthy boost of a juicy fruit just won’t do anymore, and you’d want something else, even if it doesn’t seem as good as the first fruit you tasted. You need that variety to keep your life exciting. [Read: 15 reasons why you may be bored with your relationship]
Monogamy and promiscuity
Do you ever wonder why sex with your partner isn’t as fascinating as it once was, when both of you first got together?
Does that cute guy staring at you while you’re shopping on Sunday excite you on a lot more, or is it that girl who sits next to you at work and stares at you every now and then? We can’t help it, external excitement excites all of us.
If Shakespearean tragedies were to be lifted off real life stories, Romeo would probably stray and hook up with some sweet Italian perky, and perhaps that’s why Juliet would have killed herself! Who can really tell? But one thing’s certain.
We do get attracted to people other than our own partners. It’s only logical and human. We would love looking out at potential hotties when we were single. How can we just change that part of ourselves when we enter a relationship? Those feelings may be masked for a while, but it’s never really gone. [Read: Why do men cheat? – 3 big reasons and 27 more!]
And whenever you’re away from your partner, it’s spring time of the raunchy kind! You’d always be tempted to do something outrageously stupid and promiscuous. [Read: Why long distance relationships are so hard to survive]
When we start going out with someone, we may make a promise that we’d never stray, but in these days of liberated sexuality, skimpier clothes, money and quick getaways, promiscuity has turned into an irresistible rage.
Is curiosity to blame for promiscuity?
Promiscuity is bad, definitely. But sometimes we just can’t help it. Is it your fault that you start losing your libido when you’re with your longtime partner, but are instantly turned on by some other hot looker?
Are you supposed to hate yourself because you still love someone but aren’t attracted to them sexually? Most importantly, is it your fault? Or is it theirs? My guess is, it’s nobody’s fault. It’s just the way we humans are built in the head.
Maybe the whole problem lies in our childhood. Many of us aren’t promiscuous. We fall in love, and in some cases, fall in love with the first or second partner and end up getting married. [Read: 10 reasons why saying ‘I love you’ too soon sucks!]
Sex is glorious to start off with, but a few raunchy movies or flirting conversations with others later, you wonder how it would feel like to be in another person’s bed. I have quite a few friends who were extremely promiscuous early in their life. Most of them have turned out just perfect now. They’re married, and aren’t tempted anymore. Sex is the same with any person, after a while, they say. It’s the emotional connection that really matters, to them.
But I also do have a few other friends who just can’t stay with the same mate for over a couple of years. So which is the better option, being promiscuous or never being involved with more than a few people sexually? [Read: How to resist the temptation to cheat when you’re in love]
Love’s got nothing to do with lust
Temptation is all around us. And however loyal we are, it’s hard to pretend like we have given our mind, body and soul to our lover, even though we really want to. If someone sexually attractive shows a sexual interest in you, there is a conflict of emotions. But if you are so loyal to your own lover, why is there a need for a conflict? The answer is right there. The answer is ‘stay loyal’. But yet, we need to ponder about it over our sleep.
A friend of mine even broke up with her childhood sweetheart when she was getting attention from another great looking, smooth guy. No, she didn’t want to go out with him, though she loved flirting with him. But something inside her told her that she may just be better off being single and flirting with other men until she can get over the temptation and find the perfect guy. [Confession: I want to be single again!]
It’s been said that when someone falls in love, they devote themselves completely to their partner. True, everyone does, but their sexual urges don’t.
Unfortunately, and contrary to popular belief, sex has got nothing to do with love. Sex does feel special when you’re in love, but that’s probably because you’re involving two special feelings, love and sex, to mingle together. There’s nothing in the world that proves that sex feels best when you’re in love!
How many people who have been in love for over a decade say that they’ve had explosive sex on a one night stand, and even go to the extent of saying that they had the best sex of their lives while they were having an affair? Sounds crazy, and confusing, doesn’t it? So what the heck has love got to do with lust? [Read: Should you cheat or avoid cheating? – Find your own answer here]
Why we avoid getting into an affair
In reality, lust is compromised when we’re in love. And that’s the straight fact. You do think another person is hot, but the love and respect you have for your partner overrides the infatuation you have for another person. You don’t want to have sex with another person outside your relationship because that might hurt your sweetheart. [Read: How to end an affair and get over it completely]
The fact that your affair would hurt your lover is what keeps you from having one in the first place. So, as a matter of fact, you are compromising and giving up your sexual urges, just so you could live happily with your lover.
Most of us already know this, on a subconscious level. That’s why we resort to role playing and fantasizing in bed.
Isn’t that the easiest way to stay away from promiscuity? If you can talk about and imagine having sex with someone else, do you really need to go out and do it? Maybe not. And role playing gives you a chance to make out with different people without actually leaving your bedroom or your lover out of the picture. [Read: The beginner’s guide to role playing in bed with your lover]
Some people resort to swinging, and swapping partners. Many of them even give testimony that swinging and exchanging partners has brought them closer together, and helped them love each other a lot more. Their reason *or excuse* is that there’s no real conflict between love and lust. And when there’s no conflict, there’s no need for love or lust to be undermined. [Read: Things to know before you start swing with your partner]
Many swingers claim that both love and lust bloom in their own gardens, and are separated by a picket fence of trust. Whatever that means, even if it does sound philosophical and vaguely true.
How to deal with promiscuity in love
Everyone in the world has their own way of dealing with promiscuity. Back in the earlier days, issues like these were taboo, and even close friends wouldn’t know if someone’s having a torrid affair. The men used to be a lot more immoral, and it was understood and accepted if he had mistresses. I can only imagine how women used to feel. Sexually deprived, jealous, or cheated?
We’ve come a long way from there today, and women too demand the sexual prowess that men ‘deserved’ in the old days. And maybe that’s why there’s so much promiscuity in the air. [Read: 18 signs you may be having an emotional affair and not even realize it!]
Everyone wants to have a fling, and no one thinks twice about it. And now that we’ve come this far, it’s only a matter of time before it gets worse. Right now, even as you’re reading this, there are thousands of men and women getting their sheets dirty with someone outside their marriage.
How many lovers have you had?
In a survey I read a few years ago, I remember reading that Kiwi women are the most promiscuous in the world. On an average, one woman sleeps with twenty men, whereas the global average for women is around eight men. That’s one woman sleeping with eight men in her life, on an average. The figures aren’t any different for men either. Can you believe how things are these days?
When we used to be younger, even about two decades ago, if you told someone that your lover is the only person you’ve slept with in your entire life, they would go “Awww… that’s true love” but now, the only thing you’d hear is “Are you serious?!”
The teens these days are a lot wilder, and don’t really think twice about experimenting with each other. [Read: The dark secret behind teens and their rainbow parties]
Just the other day, while using my little nephew’s computer at my sister’s place, I saw a few porn videos in his playlist. I was shocked and spoke to him about it. He didn’t seem too disturbed or ashamed about it. He rattled off several raunchy websites and also told me that all his friends, girls and guys watch this ‘stuff’. You don’t think it’s a big deal? Think now. He’s in fifth grade! And so are all his friends!
The world has definitely changed. But I’d still stick to the same fact. True love is always better than promiscuity.
Love gives us a sense of fulfillment, while lust gives us instant gratification. The difference between love and lust is like dancing in a club. Love is like dancing after one drink. It’s smooth, mellow and happy all the while.
Lust is like dancing while tripping on LSD *don’t try it if you haven’t already!*. It’s a rush that nothing else in the world can give, but you’d feel terrible and empty after the trip’s gone. [Read: How egos in a relationship effect the outcome of an affair]
Look out if you must
Being promiscuous isn’t really bad. I’d even advice you to be, just as long as your mind and body is ready for it. And if you were to ask me, I’d tell you to explore the options and have fun, until you realize for yourself that there’s nothing better than finding that one special person with whom you want to spend the rest of your life.
There’s nothing worse than finding the love of your life, and worrying about dipping your feet into the waters of promiscuity just because you’ve been with just one person your whole life while the global average is around eight.
Makes you feel small and inadequate, doesn’t it?
But hey, you should consider yourself lucky. You didn’t have to put up with bad lovers to get to your best. You got the best lover in the whole world without trying too hard, right? [Read: Love triangles and the complications it could lead to]
The war between promiscuity and love will never end, and quite frankly, these days, promiscuity and lust are beating love hands down, but it’s never too late.
Remember, love is the final answer at the end.
Love is the super power when compared to lust, when we look at their roles throughout one’s life. Both, love and lust, are two entities that are plugged into your body, and there’s always a conflict between the two. Which one wins defines the outcome of your relationship and your happiness.
Unless, of course, both of you are willing to compromise on lust and love, once in a while. If you were at ask me, I’d suggest staying in love instead of falling for lust. But if you can’t handle it, choose the middle path that’ll make both of you happy. [Read: How to have an open relationship by choosing the middle path]
But can that really make things better, giving rein to lust while love takes the back seat now and then? It may not be the easiest way to satiate your lustful cravings while being in a committed relationship. But if you want to experiment in bed, start by experimenting in your mind through sexual fantasies. But then again, if you need more than just a bedroom fantasy to satiate your lust, you definitely need to remember the consequences. [Read: How to fantasize about someone else with your own partner]
Promiscuity always rears its head when you’re in love. But will you get more satisfaction and happiness from true love, or would you prefer to let lust control your mind? Your decision here will choose the direction of the relationships in your life.