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The Healthy Relationship

  1. Apr 3, 2010 #1
    In my opinion, there are a couple of absolutes.

    1). You need to have your sexual desires fulfilled by your partner.

    2). You need to have a common "life project" that you share an active interest in.

    3). You need to have separate spaces of existence available.

    Number one is number one. If you have fantasies and cravings that you do not share with your partner, your relationship will inevitably break, in whole or in part, sooner or later. This is THE major issue. Not having a sexually satisfying relationship is worse than having no relationship at all. Intimacy is king. Sharing your body and soul begins in bed.

    Number two simply means that you have a common goal that you work towards, that you take an active interest in and feed off eachother with. The most common "project" like this is of course to make a family and raise kids - but even without that you will still need *something* that unite you outside of the bedchamber. Business, studies, whatever.

    Number three is about withdrawal. No matter how close you are and no matter how tight it is, there will be moments when your mood shifts and you feel alienated and needing to be alone, just wanting to be silent and ponder whatever weirdness it is that occupies your mind. This is when you need to have *faith* in eachother and allow it to happen. People are weird. Deal with it. Tomorrow's another day.

    If you have 1, 2 and 3 checked and roger'd, your relationship stands a fair chance of success.
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 5, 2010 #2
    I couldn't disagree more to be honest.

    On the basis of 1 I am extremely unorthodox and well aware of that, but I believe that if a partner completely satisfies you sexually, you in fact, objectify that person, controversial I know, but humour me as I explain.

    Assume you're outside of a relationship, I mean, I'd reckon about any bloke at least once a week sees a person he thinks of 'I'd so do her [or him]', now, assume that this stays in a relationship, then surely you are not sexually satisfied?

    Assume it leaves, then thus, having sex with one person can take away your need to have sex with another person yes? It's not about the people per se, it's about having sex. The person with whom this intimacy is shared with is secondary to the act itself, and I believe this is case with people in about all things, it's not about wanting to be friends with a certain person, it's about having friends as a goal on its own. I mean, say you have a really good friend, up until the moment you've met that friend, it's not like you always wanted that person in your life right? Same for sex, same for relationships, if that is healthy or not might be debatable, but if having sex with one person can sedate the desire to have sex with another person, id est, you feel like you want to have sex, rather than feeling like you want to have sex, or be intimate to some degree with a specific object [itex]$x$[/itex], then you objectify both. Which is 'only human' if that makes it forgivable is your own to make up.

    As for 2), I have no idea why people should have a common interest? For me, I define the very notion of love as wanting to talk to people an sich, as a goal, not a means. If I want to talk to a person as a goal in itself, not as a means for some other goal like the extraction of information, and if it's not 'to have some one to talk to', but if no other person can satisfy that specific desire—though it's quite possible to have it towards multiple people at the same time—then I would be to say that I love that person. Now, there are many different types of love of course. But the main issue is that it's not necessary to share an interest, since whatever that person talks about it's a time well spent to me, because I enjoy talking to that person, so the subject is not extremely relevant. I would always be interested in hearing that person's view thereon.

    As for a goal to work on together, why? Goals get finished anyway if only one person works on them. Unity comes from talking together, and unity isn't needed. The person I'd definitely and indisputably say of that I loved the most I shared little unity with, but as explained afore, arguing is talking too, so it was fun in a way. Then again, a lot of outside observers would say that our relationship was less than healthy, more of a 'George and Mildred' type.

    The necessity of 3 seems a prime indication for me that your relationship is in fact, not healthy. Note again that this is 'only human'.
  4. Apr 5, 2010 #3

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    Quick semantics question: an sich is the German for "for it's own sake", correct?

    Literally it means "by itself" or "at itself", so I wanted to check.
  5. Apr 5, 2010 #4
    Yes, 'sich' is the German third person dative/accusative reflexive pronoun for all genders and numbers, 'an sich' is hard to translate literally but I suppose 'on itself' would be the best option in this context.

    I believe the term entered English by Kant, as in 'das ding für mich' (the thing for me) opposed to 'das ding an sich', however now that you mention it I'm actually not sure how well spread its use is, I think I'm the only person who would use it in oral communication. =P

  6. Apr 5, 2010 #5

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    Hmm... The dictionary translates it as "in itself" which I would think would be "in sich".

    "on itself" would be better translated as "auf sich"...

    But I guess that's why I can't take it literally...

    Back to the topic, I must strongly disagree with your counterargument to point 1.

    You seem to be saying (and correct me if I'm wrong) that satisfying sex is bad because it objectifies your significant other. I disagree, I believe that sex can create new bonds, rather than objectifying the old ones. Usually if sex isn't provided, in addition, one or the other in a couple go looking for it elsewhere... and that's REALLY bad in a relationship. Men and women both have needs, and the other should at least try sometimes to fulfill them if you want a healthy and long-lasting relationship.
  7. Apr 5, 2010 #6
    I guess, 'an' is pretty hard to translate. I mean, German superlatives 'am Größten', how do you translate that literally, the best I can come with is 'amongst the greatest/largest'

    No, not at all, I'm saying that if one person can satisfy all your sexual needs, you have sex for the sex an sich, rather than for the purpose of that particular person. (für sie?)

    The chance of only feeling sexual attraction towards one person is astronomically small, therefore, if one person can satisfy it all, you don't feel sexual attraction towards people, rather, you like to have sex, and praeferably with a person that's also attractive.
  8. Apr 6, 2010 #7

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    Für sie/ihn depending on gender.

    I can see the logic of your argument now.
  9. Apr 6, 2010 #8
    I actually mean the plural sie, the 'them'.

    Seriously, how do Germans manage when in three of the four cases, feminine singular is identical to plural for any gender and by extension second person formal forms?

    "Ach, das ist für Sie."
    'Ach, ich rufe ihr denn.
    "NEIN, für Sie'
    'Ach, dann rufe ich ihnen'
    "Nein, SIE, DU!"
    'Ahh, für mich?'
    "Na klar."
  10. Apr 6, 2010 #9
    "An sich" means "in and of itself". "Das Ding an sich" means "the thing, in and of itself". "Talking to people an sich" means "talking to people, in and of itself".
  11. Apr 6, 2010 #10
    That all people translate it differently here, including dictionaries is a pretty good indication to my original point that 'an' has no aequivalent in English.
  12. Apr 7, 2010 #11
    You can't derive a proper translation of "an sich" from knowing what the two words mean separately. One has simply to be taught that "an sich" means "in and of itself".

    Let me rephrase: I am not offering "in and of itself" as my best shot at a translation of "an sich". I am telling you that this is what all of my German teachers instructed me to understand what it means. Some of them were Germans very conversant in English, some were Americans very conversant with German. None of them contradicted the other on this.

    There is no special problem with the word "an". All prepositions are arbitrary after a point. It makes no particular sense to say a person is "in the money", or "on the prowl," or to do something "by the book", or "by accident", and so forth. What preposition is used is often a matter of convention. One simple has to be told what to understand by it in a given usage.
  13. Apr 7, 2010 #12
    No it doesn't, you can't directly translate that phrase, it depends heavily on context, you can only translate it in the context of a sentence.

    All people gave a different one.

    Were these separate and unrelated teachers or on the same school? Could be part of the cirriculum you know. Also, I would be sceptical towards the level of your German classes if they tell you you can that easily translate a phrase so short to English, languages need to be translated sentence by sentence.

    Anyway, google translate translates it as 'per se', and google translate works with parallel corpora, so... seems like the UN rather has 'per se', itself Latin for 'through itself'

    That hardly works, one has to see it in context a lot of times to grasp the meaning.

    Let me ask you this, do you have 'a feeling' for German, do you read German by translating it in your mind to your native language? can you appreciate what constitutes a poetic and beautiful phrasing in German?
  14. Apr 7, 2010 #13
    Who cares? This is a thread about healthy relationships. Furthermore, as per forum rules all posts must be made in English. Let's try to get back on topic now.
  15. Apr 12, 2010 #14
    It's a topic about language. Just like a topic about mathematics. Mathematics is not English. The only rule that they broke is thread hijacking.

    If you only speak English, I feel sorry for you.


    Anyways, back on topic.

    A healthy relationship is one that allows you to maintain a healthy relationship with yourself. So many relationships are destructive to the individuals themselves. They stay together often based on misconstrued thoughts. For example, "I'm with him because I love him." but really it's probably because both are insecure, have a fear of being alone or who knows. You can not love someone so much that you will harm your own health and theirs to be with this person.
  16. Apr 13, 2010 #15
    Well, I just used a proverb from another language which got mentioned, apparently the word is quite obscure in English.

    Monolingualism frightens me, I can only wonder how limited one's view must be by only knowing one language, having no concept of translating and different languages. That in some English cultures being 'bilingual' (and by that they mean speaking some really broken Spanish too) is some-how 'special' is just scary.

    Awww do we have to?

    I've broken one of the biggest rules in my life ('Thou shalt not know better what is good for others than they themselves.') once because of that, I gave a friend an ultimatum, either you break up with that boyfriend of yours with whom you only argue whom you clearly don't love and neither does he love you but you're just with each other because you're both afraid of being alone, or I'm out of your life until you decide to do so.

    She at first chose the boyfriend but later indeed after it broke up finally and we started to get in touch again admitted that it was for the better and it turned out that he indeed lied a lot of things together.

    I personally think that a healthy relationship shouldn't be a relationship to begin with, one shouldn't care if you are in a relationship or not, those taedious quaestions like 'Well, are we dating now?', who cares what you call it, it's about what it is.
  17. Apr 13, 2010 #16

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    Sorry, but "it's about what it is" is too deep for me... elaborate, please, without sounding like Bill Clinton in a trial...

    "it depends on what it is..."
  18. Apr 13, 2010 #17
    Let me illustrate that with an example, thereby spewing my private life on a board about exact science... I knew a girl, whose friends were all asking her 'Well, are you dating or aren't you?', to which she replied each time 'I've explained what we do together and how our bond/relationship is already, call it what you like, I don't care.', to get that quaestion back again in two days, often from the very same person.

    In our case, we had no interest in that quaestion if we were dating or not, it wouldn't change a thing about our relationship at all what we called it, and why would we give it a name to begin with? Surely we knew how we treated each other and what our bond/relationship was? To us, surely any name would have no use? A name is to identity if, we give things names because 'bread' is a lot shorter than 'Product made of baked dough to consume which contains dietary fibres', so a name is useful to refer to it, however there is absolutely no conceivable situation wherein we had to refer to our bond together amongst us, as what it is is known to us right?

    Out of that description of how our bond was, some would say we had a relationship, others would say we were simply good friends, therefore, the word 'relationship' is vague, all people define it differently, and therefore it becomes a useless term to communicate what kind of bond we have and describing it functions better.

    But most people care more about the term used than its meaning, of course. If you define beforehand 'For the purposes of this conversation, the word 'venereal whore' shall be used to denote the current reigning monarch of England and nothing more', people are still going to get offended by calling Elizabeth a venereal whore, even though we just indicated its new meaning. In fact, people care so much more about words than their respective meaning that they often go on to debate the 'true meaning' of a word, when that happens, you know both parties stopped caring about content a long time ago.
  19. Apr 13, 2010 #18

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    I understand now. Thank you.
  20. Apr 13, 2010 #19
    I was actually hoping for more resistance.

    Any way, I think this could have a thing to do with how well one is able to conceive concepts which the languages they speak have no words or idioms for.
  21. Apr 13, 2010 #20
    Agreed on both comments.
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