Forlorn.of.thee (fa'lo:n ŭv thē), p, my only strength and stay,forlorn of thee, whither shall I betake me, where subsist?
Paradise Lost by John Milton
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Thursday, July 5, 2007

Online Relationships

I’ve read about it, didn’t (maybe wouldn’t) believe it. Love based on emails, instant messaging and social networks, pah!

Putting scepticism aside, I oft wonder what LOVE is? Is it some indescribable feel good thing, some je ne sais quoi, or can we be a little more specific.

Did some reading and discovered this shrink who defined love in three bite sized pieces . These pieces are:
  1. Intimacy,
  2. Passion, and
  3. Commitment.

Intimacy includes closeness, sharing and communication.

Passion is mostly sexual, sort of love/ lust at first sight, the other person being one's paragon of virtue and perfect in every way.

Finally, there's Commitment, so called "cognitive or thinking component" (eh? what's that I ask). This may include support, a sense of obligation, willingness to make sacrifices for the person you really care about, or say, hanging around a loveless marriage for the sake of the kids.

Ticking through the above points, have asked myself can there be intimacy in an online relationship? Have discovered to my surprise, most definitely - a resounding yes! The emails, IM chats, all modern forms of communication. Never has there been a better time to get intimate!

Passion? The physical separation of an online relationship may be a drawback but then as two people get to know each other, good chemistry grows or as photos are exchanged, there’s always a stirring of passion, emotion and not to mention jealousy!

Finally, commitment, if two people are ready to spend time to get to know each other, listen, share the problems and pain suffered, there must be commitment. There is no stronger demonstration of obligation and duty in trying to make that relationship work.

This so called “scientific” approach, confirms that online love is not some pipe dream but a reality that happens to the lucky. If love were merely a matter for the heart, no justification is then necessary because one can feel that magic. No more incredulous, suspicious looks from me, I'm sold !

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