As you know, Papabear gets a lot of letters about love and relationships, so this seemed like a good time to write a note to all of you about love.
I think the most frequent problem I see from letter writers is that they think love is something that they get from someone else. They are troubled when they feel they are not getting the attention they deserve. While it is important that the other person in your life respects you and cares about you, you should never think of love in terms of what the other person does for you. If you are truly in love with someone, you'll know it because the only thing on your mind will be "How can I help my love be happy?"
Love isn't about sex. Love isn't about money. Yes, these are important issues, but love is about a heart connection that cannot be broken if it is real love. I've often written about the issues of sex and money in relationships, but I want to make it clear that when I do so it is really more in terms about whether lovers have respect for one another, not so much about the money and sex itself. For example, perhaps the one you love is poor and is having trouble finding work, but he or she is trying very hard to do right by you: they don't take advantage of the fact that you have money and they don't use you; they sincerely try their best to get by. That is a person you can support and love back.
I've sometimes written about long distance relationships, and I'm going to change my POV there a little, if you don't mind. I'm currently in the longest of long distance relationships that is possible because the one I love is now in the spirit world. Yet my love is still strong. Given this, who the hell am I to say that a relationship via Skype or an iPhone is less possible?
There is a thing in physics called "entanglement." This is a phenomenon described by quantum physics in which two or more particles influence their physical states ... and they do so no matter the distance between them. They can be in different galaxies and still interact with one another.
I must amend my opinion on LDRs, then. Love knows no distance. Love knows no barriers or boundaries. Love is not limited by time. Love just is.
As we travel through this existence, we learn and grow. Papabear is no exception to this. Every letter I write, I do so with sincerity and in the spirit of helping. You, dear letter writers, actually help me to learn and grow, too. We can help each other along the way, and that is what life here is all about.
Whether you are with someone or all alone today, you are never truly alone. The universe cares about you. And I care about you. Thank you for contributing to this column and thank you for being you.
Happy Valentine's Day,
A note on comments: Comments on letters to Papabear are welcome, especially those that offer extra helpful advice and add something to the conversation that is of use to the letter writer and those reading this column. Also welcome are constructive criticisms and opposing views. What is NOT welcome are hateful, hurtful comments, flaming, and trolling. Such comments will be deleted from this site. Thank you.