Came across a honest and refreshing perspective on Platonic Love by Parsons. Am compelled to share this with you, and when you read these words, may you recall that one person that got away.
Nothing is quite as potent as a relationship that is never consummated. To love pure and chaste from afar – cynics will tell you that it just doesn’t happen, that those feelings cannot be. But many men have a secret love, a passion they keep hidden from the world, a torch they carry with them down all the days. And platonic love never sets you free.
“When I get what I want, I never want it again,” sings Courtney Love. Naturally you know the feeling – what makes the Seattle widow one hell of a woman is that she thinks just like a man – but the flipside is that when you don’t get what you want, then you want it for a lifetime.
But platonic love is more than just fancying someone that you never had the chance to knob. Platonic love is infinitely more than frustrated desire. It is the girl that got away. It is the baby that will never be born, the opportunity for salvation that will never be taken, the final chance for happiness that is missed – and missed forever.
Fantasists, dreamers, romantics of every hue – platonic love is made for them. Because platonic love can never be tarnished by habit, boredom or betrayal. A love that is never fulfilled is never tested in the real world. It does not wither and die with time. And so it grows stronger, deeper and ever more obsessional. This kind of love can get out of control. For years you are locked into a courtship that never makes it to the altar – or even the bedroom.
Platonic love is almost ludicrously romantic. A mid-afternoon cup of coffee in a sun-dapped café, an intense thirty minutes stolen between work and home, becomes an epiphany you will remember forever. Holding hands with your platonic love is more exciting than any blow-job. This is how you know that it is real. Platonic love grazes everything with magic.
There is a secret corner of every man’s heart that keeps one woman separate from the rest. Men are driven to find a love that we can never spoil. Platonic love should not be derided too easily. The love that remains constant in a changing world is to be cherished – even if it is never given a road test. Platonic love is the real thing.
The hard of heart don’t believe in it because they think that romance cannot exist in a vacuum. They think that real love cannot live without the exchange of bodily fluids, joint bank accounts, boring dinner parties and all the rest. But in a world where it is possible to sleep with someone without knowing their name, then surely it is possible to love someone without sleeping with them.
And, of course, you do sleep with them, if only in your dreams. Platonic love has a sexual charge that will never be diluted by the years. And if sexual technique is largely concerned with delaying the moment of release, then platonic love is when that moment is delayed for a lifetime.
It brings out the best in you. Platonic love puts you back in touch with yourself. It is true that your secret love never sees your dark side. You can’t betray a platonic love, you can’t leave the top off her toothpaste. But it would be wrong to say she doesn’t know you simply because she only sees your good side. She knows what you were like before you were hardened by all the goodbyes, by all the messy endings. She knows you better than anyone.
Some argue that platonic love is the last refuge of the emotionally stunted, the ones who screwed too many of the wrong women and screwed over too many of the right women. Maybe. Except that there has to be something righteous in loving someone – truly loving someone – and asking for nothing in return.
Platonic love can be a great comfort in your darkest hours – to know that she is out there, that she lives and breathes, makes this world a better place. But it is also a relationship of sweet sorrow, of almost unbearable pathos. What if? What if? Could it ever work? Would it be like all the rest? You will never know. But still you dream the impossible dream.
Because she always knows. You can’t make your heart a hostage to someone who doesn’t feel the same way. Fate, circumstance and quite probably her husband all conspire to keep you apart – but she knows how you feel and she feels the same way. Platonic love is requited love.
Don’t feel bad about a love that lives only in your dreams. Don’t feel ridiculous. You are not some lovesick teenager waiting for the telephone to ring. You know it is hopeless. You understand it can never be. But you continue to believe, you continue to want the best for her. You don’t stop caring even when you know that there is nothing in it for you. And that’s what makes platonic love feel like the greatest love of all.