Relationships, Integrity, "Going with the Flow"

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default Relationships, Integrity, "Going with the Flow"

Post by Cat on Tue Aug 02, 2016 12:10 pm

Just something I was pondering today. For me, the idea of a relationship has always been monogamous and deeply intimate. Since I'm an introvert with a small inner circle of friends to begin with, this is pretty easy and clear-cut for me. I'm not getting close to other people regularly, so it's easy for me to be very direct and honest about who is in that position in my life.

That said, many of my close friends are also male. And they date, and have very social lives. I've always been kind of iffy about when they do date and we continue our close friendships--am I getting in the way of their relationship? Are we at the brother/sister level of friendship now after so many years, and that makes it "OK"? They think my views are a little stubborn and unrealistic, likely because they go with the flow and interact with more people on a constant basis, as a lot of people do.

People live different lives, and we all have our own values, but this made me curious about what my definition of integrity really is.

On one hand, I see the value in being more "casual" about things - appreciate everyone for who they are, cherish connection when and if it happens, let it go when it ends.

On the other hand, I value a higher degree of intimacy, and that means not being as casual/minimizing external barriers to that intimacy.

Not sure what point I'm trying to make here haha, just curious what other thoughts on it are.
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Post by melodiccolor on Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:33 pm

For me it's simple; friends are friends and I get very close to mine for most of them. I've always had friends of both genders who were extremely close; something those I was in a romantic relationship knew going in. My husband has always been fine with it. This is possible because there is full trust. Just because you love someone as a friend or brother or sister, doesn't mean you have less love for your significant other. Your male friends are not betraying their partners by maintaining a close friendship with you, unless it is at the expense of it, in which case it wasn't the right person in the first place for them.

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Post by Cat on Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:57 pm

Where do you think the line of "emotional infidelity" is?
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Post by melodiccolor on Tue Aug 02, 2016 8:17 pm

That term is loaded. As long as you're open with your partner, emotionally, intellectually and with your true self fully, you are being fully there in the relationship. If you find yourself withholding aspects of yourself to fit an image your partner holds of you, but sharing your full self with another, I guess that is in "emotional infidelity" territory. If one of your friends is doing so, he has a problem with his relationship; you are not cheating.

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default Re: Relationships, Integrity, "Going with the Flow"

Post by Cat on Tue Aug 02, 2016 8:55 pm

Great points. I naturally share my "full self" within all of my friendships, so sometimes I feel like I should be holding back or not sharing so much in order to not step on anyone's toes. But it's out of my control in the end, like you said.

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Post by bosharpe on Thu Aug 04, 2016 7:49 pm

I'm can be very shy and quiet in groups of people. I tend to take a step back and as it can become quite loud, intense and familiar quickly. I crave intensity and intimacy however.

One on one with non-single friends of the opposite sex I'd probably be more familiar (not flirty), in contrast to if their partner was there in the room unless I knew them both very well.
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