“In pursuing love, electronic communication allows us to be more reckless, fake, distracted and more isolated than ever before.” – Daniel Jones, Editor of the Modern Love columns in the New York Times
Some readers also wrote in asking for his comment / opinion on some of their issues. I picked these two (from countless) which I thought we, young people (esp living in cities) sometimes struggle the most with.
How can monogamy still be considered a viable long-term arrangement?
Daniel’s response: Some people think we live too long to commit to one person for life. Monogamy may have made sense a few centuries ago, they argue, when we tended to die in our 40s (after raising a dozen children). But being with the same person well into our 70s and 80s? That simply can’t be natural.
This is a question, by the way, asked almost exclusively by people in their 40s (or younger). People in their 70s and 80s do not ask this question. They are, by and large, very happy to have shared a lifetime with the same person.
What happens when you’re in a no-strings-attached sexual relationship, and you start to fall in love?
Daniels’s response: Maybe the better question is: How do you incorporate feelings into a relationship that is founded on a premise of no feelings? I have heard this lament too many times to count, from men and women. And few stories follow a more predictable script than the hookup in which one person suddenly wants more.
The rationalization goes like this: I knew the rules going in, and it’s not fair to change them midstream. Agree? Hmmn, if only feelings were that easy to switch of and adjust as you please.
We can trust his responses here, or take soomething from them b/c from all the essays he reads, sifting through all sorts of tales on love, sex, dating, marriage, perversion, longing, sexual dysfunction and death that arrive hourly to his inbox, I’d say he’s read enough to give solid advise.
The Modern Love columns are made up of beautifully-written personal essays, from NYT readers, published in the New York Times.
Pic: Brian Rea