People like to demarcate between love and lust but they are actually two sides of the same coin. I like to say that my ex and I fell into lust. We could not keep our hands off each other and even three months before I left the relationship (which lasted nearly 35 years), we would just look at each other and want to hit the sack – and that’s in our 50s! It was a very powerful feeling of attraction and desire, but I felt that too much resentment had crept in, as well as other unacceptable behaviour, and I decided, with much heartache, to leave it. However, I noticed that those strong physical feelings weren’t a fluke. They were also present , in varying degrees, with the next two men in my life.
That has forced me to conclude that lust is the pre-requisite to love. There really is no difference between the two except that, in cases where there is only lust and no development, someone in the partnership is resisting commitment, or doesn’t feel as strong. Wherever the feeling is reciprocal, there is real love on the horizon. It is a lack of commitment and a fear of the future that stop lust from developing further, because there is no greater feeling than desiring a person deeply and having that reciprocated.
Many people who are unsure of themselves, insecure in their expectations, narrow in their definition of love and very controlling, prefer to make a distinction between love and lust. They often use value judgements to imply that somehow lust is less worthy of our reaction than love, and one cannot put great faith in it. But any relationship which begins without that spark of lust will not have much to sustain it when the initial attraction wears off. When we lust after someone, we want to share their company in every possible way, and for as often as possible too. Lust precedes love and when they are both allowed to take their course, as I found out on three occasions in my life, it is a simply awesome and overwhelming experience.
When two people meet, if there really isn’t that lust there, the physical part soon goes, which eventually takes the relationship with it. Lust prepares us for the long haul in commitment, while love takes over further down the line when we know our partners better and feel more emotionally in tune with them. It then strengthens that attraction and settles us down to enjoying mutual trust, great sex and an even more satisfying relationship.