Sunday, March 1, 2015

What Is The Opposite Of Love?



Ever since I first started my blog, I have enjoyed those readers who email. Some readers email for a short time and then are gone. Some stay for awhile and the emails begin to taper off. However every once in a while, a reader will write and the two of us feel an instant connection. The reader I am referring to does not have a blog and isn't interested in beginning one. Every time I see an email from her in my inbox, I smile big. She is funny and tells her story in ways that have me laughing. We compare ttwd notes and laugh that despite the difference in our ages, we have had very similar experiences.

This person sent me an online article.  I thank her for doing so. The article asked an interesting question: what is the opposite of love? The writer of the article answered in a most straight forward way. The opposite of love is indifference. Sit there a minute and just think about that. Love begins a marriage. The life happens and what is left sometimes is complacent or lackluster.

When I fell in love with Jack, I was oh so young. He was just a boy and I was just his girl. We each fell madly in love and we were still in high school. What did we know of love? Our love was strong and sweet. Those dating years were fun and went so fast. College years flew by and we married. Jack's military service interrupted things. We were poor as church mice, but so happy. Indifferent........ not for a minute were we indifferent. We were madly in love and then started our family. Indifferent........ no way! Just very busy juggling careers, deployments, and nurturing a family. Then the nest empties and things continue as deployments happen again. Careers make life very busy and interesting. We began to turn away from one another and did not even realize it. The nest empties and the first signs of indifference is right there, only we did not even notice.

Married a long time, we grew together and now were perhaps growing apart. The opposite of love is indifference. I felt disconnected and could not figure out what we needed or how to fix it. Jack seemed not to notice my discontent. We were perhaps becoming indifferent to one another at the very time we needed to turn toward one another. We were headed for the life of a house, but not one another.

Ttwd helped us turn back to one another. We turned what might have been early indifference to amazing  love and we felt the rekindling of our marriage like nothing else we had ever experienced. We were the opposite of indifferent.......... we were in love and friends noticed. Ttwd added chemistry, fireworks, passion, discipline, accountability, intimacy and deep connection. We pleased one another and the turning toward one another continued.

Marriage isn't a fairytale. There are moments that take your breath away and moments in which you wonder how frustrating things can get. For the long haul, marriage is a work in progress. The summer we married, there were four marriages in our family. Jack and I are the only ones still together. The other couples chose indifference. When facing complacency or working to improve our relationship, we always choose to roll up our sleeves. Lots of couples our age choose to give up, move on and go separate ways. We turned toward on another. We chose love instead of indifference.

Tell me what you think. Are you choosing love and ttwd? Is ttwd making a startling difference in your marriage? Is indifference nudging its way into your marriage? What are you doing about it?









Thanks, L. and to you, H., for inspiring the post!

Meredith

32 comments:

  1. This is so beautifully stated. It made me cry actually. It is sad when we let indifference come between two people who were so much in love. Then life gets in the way, drifting occurs even without one another realizing it. True love is a treasured gift and must be nurtured in order for it to continue and grow. This takes work, dedication and a willingness to make necessary changes from within the heart. TTWD can help in that it causes both partners to stop and reflect and determine how to move forward. This can be a delicate balance to achieve but so much worth the effort when you realize how blessed you are to have that special someone with whom you would give your life for. Not everyone gets such a once in a lifetime opportunity or the ability to renew the love and passion they have. Life is too short and too precious to not take time to grow and change.

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  2. Mere,,,Lovely post,so happy for You and Jack. : - )


    L.

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  3. Powerful post, Meredith! Before ttwd our marriage was definitely indifferent, but we didn't even recognize it. We are so grateful that our marriage has now been transformed. Thanks you so much for posting this.

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  4. I agree wholeheartedly with this...indifference/complacency is the opposite of love. It's the trust, respect, and commitment that are the bedrock for ttwd that ignite the flame. Then ttwd ensures that the flame keeps burning brightly.

    Mere, I love how you expressed that when indifference grew, you rolled up your sleeves and got to work on your marriage. Marriage certainly does take work. I'm so thankful for what I've learned through your blog.

    SSB

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  5. Beautifully stated Mere and I so agree! I would rather someone hate me as to be indifferent....that is so painful. Very happy that you and Jack are doing so well. ;)

    Hugs and Blessings...
    Cat

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  6. In one of our many talks, I told Steve that before DD we were pretty much roommates. He agreed. We shared a house, a child and occasionally a bed, but that was it. We pretty much lived separate lives. DD changed that.

    I think that's a big part of why I get so upset if DD seems to be slipping away. I don't want to go back to being indifferent. I don't want to go back to being roommates.

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  7. Marriage is like a home,it needs constant attention, different attention at different points, it in involves work. But put the hard work in and the reward can be wonderful for all to see. We achieve nothing in this life without effort. Make the effort, giggle,laugh and cry together,bend over for him,it will be good. Take it from one who tied the knot 43 years ago it can be done.

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  8. What ever you do don,t stop talking

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  9. Lovely post Meredith, and so well said.

    Hugs
    Roz

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  10. As usual, you have hit the nail on the head. Indifference is a terrible state of mind, and like you, we have been there. Looking back, it is so easy to recognise the signs, but at the time, we were moving apart without even realising it.

    The only other comment I would add it that there are some marriages that 'never should have been' in the first place. You and Jack, and Dan and I, were lucky. But some people are just plain too young and immature to take such a step. Like Anna states, above, marriage is very hard work and for some it can seem easier to get their excitement in other ways and ignore the reason for coming together in the first place.

    A very thought-provoking post.

    Hugs
    Ami

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  11. Hi Meredith, thank you for this wonderful entry. Maybe the tricky years are still ahead of us, because our family of three is still very new, but how a couple can grow closer due to ttwd is something I have learned from early on when we married. The relationship that I have with hubby is much stronger than anything I have known before. We do things differently, with us at the centre of it and in a way which focuses so much more on the needs that each of us has. I have never had that before hubby and see exactly what you mean. There is no indifference for us and when our connection weakens for some reason we both notice this (sooner or later) and both of us want that back. I have experienced our relationship as far more intense than others I had had before and attributed a lot of this to ttwd. So, instead of letting us distance, we communicate, compromise and find ways out of problems and often enough spankings are the best choice to for us to settle things, it is definitely the best way for us to reconnect. And then we talk some more. :)

    hugs

    Nina

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  12. Hi Meredith, lovely post. I have a vanilla friend and I can see the indifference in her marriage. I am helpless to advise her but I don't think she even sees it. They sort of exist on two parallel lines whereas our lines are all twisted together. Really sad
    love Jan.xx

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  13. Beautiful post - so well stated.

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  14. beautiful post Meredith! I'm so happy for you and jack, and for the people who commented here. I can't say that our marriage has ever been indifferent, we've always loved each other very much, but with dd communication and our connection has improved so dramatically. The days of silent angry stewing are over though, and I feel like we continue to grow together. I'll be honest, I'm very happy we found dd while we are still somewhat young, I hope that we never grow indifferent and if we do, we know how to find our way back.

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  15. Nailed it! I totally agree with what you wrote. And so many of the comments too- how indifference an creep in so slowly that you hardly notice it is there. It is only after you take steps to come back together that you realize just how big of a gap had grown between you. So I guess the sad part is that so many couples live that way and can't even see it, they just assume it's the way things go after so many years of marriage. Thanks for such a nice post, Meredith!

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  16. Love this Meredith, and I can so relate!

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  17. Meredith -- What a beautiful post. I love the honesty in which you write. Our marriage was also headed to indifference. TTWD is helping us come together and love with a deeper love than ever before. For us, it's slower and sometimes frustrating, but when I look back at where we were, I'm thankful for deeper communication and the new roles we are taking on in our marriage. I'm also thankful for your posts and the time you take to email those of us who are working at remodeling our marriages.
    BS

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  18. Love this post! It's all so true! Thanks for sharing :D

    Callie

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  19. Mere,
    So absolutely true. I'd never realized how awful indifference was - but you are right - that is the exact opposite of love, and sadly, the path that a lot of couples go on without even realizing it until it's too late.
    I'm so glad for you and Jack, and for the bunch of us here, that we chose differently.
    And I just love that you were high school sweethearts. ♥
    hugs,
    Cali

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  20. Love vs. indifference, what a great answer. In our marriage, I think we always valued each other, but got busy with jobs, kids, and sick parents. Sometimes it felt like we were always exhausted and just lived under the same roof. After periods of crises, we would turn back to each other for strength. The empty nest period eventually led to retirement and time for us: a smaller home in a new town, more friends and activities, less work, travel, and a sense of joy that we came this far. Like many other women in blogland, spanking centers me, improves my attitude, and increases intimacy between us. So many couples do nothing but complain about their spouses and many say they don't even miss the sex. Leaning in to each other and communicating keep relationships alive.

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  21. This is a great post Meredith! :) You know, I don't ever want to go back to what I consider now "the condo model"! In our case we had sadly turned into roommates. Roommates that loved each other still- and wanted to be next door, sharing in each others lives, but apart none the less. No thank you! In comes a lot of hard work and Dd/ttwd/twist of D/s and VOILA!!! :)

    In my post This Whole Thing, where I reviewed so many of what I thought were poignant thoughts about it all, I said something like "We will never allow ourselves to go back to complacency".

    Out with the indifference and in with the loving changes that halt such distances from ever taking place. And it really does take vigilance on both parties in a marriage or serious relationship! And really it is about what we do with our love through the years and making that effort during those times that it might seems easier to slack off.

    I loved this post, and I too think that your story is so sweet- from way back to being kids really! Good for you both! It is special- all this. Who would have thought it??? Many hugs,

    <3 Katie

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  23. Meredith,

    Only just read this. High school sweethearts:) A beautiful and a very thought provoking post.

    Love,
    Ronnie
    xx

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  24. This is exactly why I want ttwd in our marriage. If only I could convince him. Then maybe we would grow together instead of apart.

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  25. Wonderful post. I remember laying in bed a few years ago, next to my husband and feeling indifferent towards him. It scarred me and one night I stumbled on my first blog. Never going back to that. We will communicate and work things out before we get to that point. :)

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  26. You had me thinking all day! I was considering how a new relationship has so much excitement. We are always enthusiastic about our partners and the adrenalin pumping thrill of being with them!
    TTWD redirects our focus and brings back into clarity that longing we had at the beginning of our love!

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  27. Great post! We are getting there. Still fairly new but trying our best to change those areas in our marriage that could use a change. Love reading these blogs. They help a lot! Thanks for being here :)

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  29. Hi meredith,

    I am sorry I got a late start on this post. But, I want to say that this is one of the reasons I took that first step and brought TTWD to the table with my hoh. Excitement and romance are a choice both parties must chose to maintain a good relationship. I will forever be grateful to the inclusion of TTWD in my marriage.

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  30. This post really grabbed my heart. It would take a million words to explain but just know that every word meant something poignant to me. Thank you.

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  31. Just read this off your Top 10 Posts blog today and it said so much to me. My husband and I are only 6 months into TTWD and it's like a new world. No more "roommates" we are soul mates, deeply committed to each other. Indifference is gone, communication is now our strongest tool. I thank you for this post, it's like you read my heart! Chris

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