Summer Love: Fling or Foundation?

Posted on February 19, 2013

“Summer Lovin, had me a blast. Summer Lovin. Happened so Fast.” You know the song and perhaps the experience. It’s summertime-everyone’s wearing less clothes, (except maybe in San Francisco’s foggy micro climates) and there are fun festivals and outside adventures happening when. . . Bam-you meet a special someone. Imagine what follows.

Connection happens, one thing leads to another, the already minimized clothing likely come off and before long, you are both drunk off what feels like a steady drip of hormonal ecstasy cocktail into your blood system. Starry eyed and woozy with visions of love and having found the perfect mate, you may or may not be sober enough to ask yourself the following question.

Is this an intended or unintended short term, hot steamy Summer fling in which you will dwell temporarily in blissful but short lived fantasies about another, or did you find someone who evokes a passion that could be the mortar concretizing a foundation of a relationship which will endure the changes of many seasons, both literally and metaphorically. The bottom line for this question has everything to do intention and the honeymoon phase. Regarding intention, if you want a short, hot, Summery tryst with someone, then enjoy the freedom in connection arising in impermanence and unattached affection. If you are intending a long term relationship, your delusions and hormonal high can now be renamed the honeymoon phase.

The honeymoon phase is the first stage of relationships, though not all would attest to having it. It’s the part of a relationship in which two people know few facts, habits, and aspects of each other and what they do know is supplemented by a variety of fantasies and projections often making the other seem like the perfect fit for that person shaped void in each partner’s heart. The stage is typically the height of romance, excitement, and passion, and it is sustained hormonally through G-d’s/Biology’s connection elixir.

Certainly every relationship is different and honeymoon phases run a wide continuum of just plain delusional to sweetly romanticized. People’s capacity to allow this phase of “falling in love” (notice the falling part) is affected by past heart aches and failed honeymoon phases. People become skeptical or “more practical” by not even looking for this high. Think of the last time your friend was gaga for someone they just met. How many times did you think to yourself, ‘just wait and see’ or ‘yeah, I remember that feeling a decade before the daily grind and diapers’.

Since the honeymoon stage, as experienced by most, seems inherently delusional, many wonder whether it’s healthy or worthwhile, if what follows can feel like a series of disappointments. Here is the catch. This phase is incredibly crucial in later phases of relationship when the age of old truth of ‘relationships take work’ presents itself. If there is no sweet memory of bliss attained through togetherness, merging or union (not to be confused with a lost sense of self in confluence), then what will draw partners back to each other once the inevitable mutual pushing of each others’ buttons arises in the dance of closeness and separateness.

Therefore, work your honeymoon phase! Enjoy it. Delight in it, AND if you would like your hot Summer fling to be the foundation for the rest of the year and perhaps your life, here is the trick: Endure the dissolution of the honeymoon phase. As real issues emerge, can you trust and continually ground in who your partner reveals themselves to actually be. Make sure you still feel compatible with the real person versus the movie you projected over them. But assuming the fantasy doesn’t crash into a non workable connection, you simply need to buckle up during the sometimes bumpy descent back to the ground of reality and hopefully if you are looking for longevity, you have found someone who once the going gets a bit tougher, still reminds you of a feel good cocktail that you can strive for with some moderate attainment of in moments. How do you endure the dissolution of the honeymoon phase into what comes next, you may ask?

Here are a few tips.

1. Get curious about who this person is, reveling in their idiosyncrasies of humanness, rather than their initial super hero resemblance.
2. Acknowledge that deep relationships trigger but heal old wounds from our real first loves-with our primary care givers. Own what is yours and be willing to let a new story or pattern of loving emerge.
3. Explore how deeper connection that includes healthy conflict and occasional disappointments is more secure than an illusory whim of romance and lust.
4. Create time for romance and lust!

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