Post valentine seemed like a good time to mull over some love issues though I worry that putting it across on a public domain might stir up a hornet’s nest. Nevertheless, with all my sincerity I am asking it upfront, “Is it possible to be in love with two people at the same time”? I assume a very instinctive, strong and divided opinion base has already quelled up amongst the readers in this very instant of reading the question.
At the outset, let me be clear about it, it isn’t talking about double dating, flings or some such frivolous stuff because you can most definitely be enjoying multiple dating fun depending on your wooing skills. What we are talking about is having some honest, genuine and sincere feelings for more than one person at the same time, and it of course includes the romantic angle. People in a committed relationship and bound by it may not necessarily be happy in it. So they naturally tend to look for companionship elsewhere or are attracted to another who might fulfill that lacking in their lives. However, the question here is that you might be completely satisfied and happy in one relationship, but have genuine feelings for someone else as well. And that someone could be somebody from your past or somebody you met later.
It’s not criminal or scandalous or unthinkable to love more than one person. It is a natural occurrence which gets pushed more so by human infallibility. Not that I am endorsing multiple love relationships or consider them sacred, all I am putting forward is that the idea or the act of loving more than one person is not so blasphemous or far-fetched after all. It is arguable that if you are already in love and happy with one person, why would you or how can you love another. Well, love is a very nuanced emotion and you might feel very distinct love for the two people which doesn’t overlap or hinder one another. It would rather be wrong to compare the two or weigh them against any scale.
I wouldn’t say very simplistically that love just happens. It happens because you feel a “connect” with the other, a vibe which is more than pleasant, rather euphoric, and you are drawn to them for no particular reason or many reasons. And this “connect” might happen at the first sight or after knowing them for a while. There is no law whether natural or man-made which forbids a person to love another while still in love with the first one. In fact it would be the most unnatural or hypocritical thing to deny it.
Whether or not you can love two people simultaneously is merely a question, the real quagmire is what do you do of that double love filled in your heart? In monogamous societies, we are of course by law precluded from having multiple legal partners. So the question of legalizing it is redundant. But what matters is the choice you make and the stand you take on a personal level. Feeling love for someone, having expressed it and being reciprocated for it takes you to a sublime state, which you wouldn’t want to snap out of ever. However, because you love and care for both sincerely, your euphoria is marred by a sense of guilt. This guilt is not about loving another but for hurting the first and usually the lawful partner. You may not have established any physical or tangible relationship with the other, but even an emotional or mental connect can be as disturbing and difficult for the first partner to accept.
As liberal minded and accepting we might believe ourselves to be, and expect or hope that the other might also understand and look at things the same way, it doesn’t work. Despite the fact that your newer feelings have been purely accidental or instinctive, haven’t changed the dynamics or equation of your existing relationship in the slightest, and that you only enjoy and cherish the other person without restructuring anything in your life, it will but cause stinging pain to your first partner.
The reasons are simple and all too human. It feels like they are being replaced, like they aren’t enough anymore and somebody is invading their personal territory. There might be traces of ego giving rise to that pain, but it is more like losing their beautiful intimacy and precious something to someone else. Today you might be in love with two people, but tomorrow if roles reverse and you become one of the two lovers in your partner’s life, trust me it will hurt you as much. Your open mindedness, your own experience of doing it, your attempt to be accepting, nothing will help from not feeling that stab of your space suddenly being slit and shared. You might rationally understand your partner’s perspective, which will make it easier to let go eventually but nothing prepares you from not feeling the crushing of your heart. However, such experiences don’t necessarily apart the couples or partners forever. We are greatly vulnerable humans both physically and emotionally but accepting and understanding those vulnerabilities can draw us closer and stronger.
Human that we are, we feel by instinct and human that we are, we act by deliberation. Human that we are, we may love simply, but human that we are, we live complexly. Human that we are, we can love two, but human that we are, we might have to make choices. Human that we are, we raise questions, and human that we are, we tend to judge the answers. I will not comment on any answer to my question, all I feel is that if one love hurts the other for its place or survival, the joy in it will soon begin to perish anyway. And love without that seamless joy only remains a barren word whether it’s for one or both.