Setting Love Totally Free

This time I am changing tact from popular topics, debates, and polarizing controversy of COVID-19 and our disuniting federal-state politics and lack of leadership during these unprecedented times in the U.S. to talk about something much more personal. In my opinion, it is critically important because it has to do with advanced(?) or semi-advanced, progressive society’s most integral part of long-term strength and stability. What is it?

I am talking about true liberating, non-judgmental, euphoric, Soul Mate/Twin Flame love. The intense, rare kind of deep passionate love that few people experience in their lifetime and even fewer recognize or have the courage to seek, find, and gleefully embrace. I am also posting this over on my Private blog The Professor’s Lifestyles Memoirs. I think this is worth posting on both sites.

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I have two good long-time friends in the Alt-Open-Swinger Lifestyles, Jackie and John Melfi. They own and run all the Colette Lifestyles clubs in Dallas, New Orleans, Houston, and their newest in Austin, TX. They are fantastic role-models for the Open Lifestyle and both Jackie and John are a wealth of wisdom, experience, and tips/help for anyone or any couples interested in taking their marriage/romance to a much, much deeper fulfilling level together.

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Jackie reposted recently a blog-post she wrote in February 2016 called Setting Love Free in an Open Relationship. In her post she offers invaluable perspective and understanding that applies not only to Open-couples, but everyone else equally important in whatever the love-arrangement together. She begins:

One of the most frequent questions I get about being in an open/swinger relationship has to do with love.

“If you play apart aren’t you afraid your partner might fall in love with someone else?”

“What if someone else falls in love with your partner?”

Well, I have the perfect story to relate my response.

That is probably most every spouse’s or partner’s biggest FEAR if they allow or don’t stop the (perceived) predatory behavior on their Significant-Other by those interested. However, those perceived fears are often unjustified. Jackie continues:

Recently John had to travel out of town on business. He was traveling back to a city where he used to live, so he had several friends in the area. We discussed before he even left town about any opportunities he would have to meet up with any of his old girl friends.

There were a couple of women he said he would be interested in seeing while he was in town. I had met both of these women in the past, so I was familiar with who they were. I like both of these women. They seem to be very sweet and kind women. I encouraged John to yes, by all means, make contact with them, even if it is just for dinner.

Why didn’t this bother me?

Because I trust John.

Alright, but HOW exactly is that trust built, earned, thoroughly known and appreciated once gained between two Lovers? Is it all done only by your partner/spouse? Do you expect them to do all of the work? Or are you yourself equally a part of that trust-achievement?

Everything about his behavior towards me shows his trustworthiness. He calls when he says he will. He discusses with me beforehand about possibilities he may have or want to have with others, and his actions show his love and devotion to me and our relationship. I saw no reason to believe this situation would be any different.

So John left for his trip. It wasn’t long before I received a text from him saying he would be joining a female friend of his later in the evening. She had always been a dear friend of John’s and needed some advice.

What I love about this story is my husband gets to put his strengths (his ability to give sound advice) to others without me being afraid. How much the world would miss if I tried to keep him all to myself.

Jackie says Everything about his behavior towards me shows his trustworthiness. He calls when he says he will. He keeps his word, he is reliable and just doesn’t feed her with regular empty lip-service. In other words, John walks his talk. What he says matches what he does, time in and time out for 5, 10, 20, 50-years. This is a very rare honorable trait in John! Believe me.

I have known many married couples, where both the husband and the wife sometimes or often confide in me. It seems to be the cost of meaningful friendship. Other times the wife seeks me out, alone, wanting to keep a secret platonic(?) friendship. Then sooner or later she will even go so far as to initiate a full-blown affair with me if she trusts that I will not wreck her marriage, wreck her home with kids, and her public image. The trade-off? I must be invisible to the world and her world. Whether it’s a good thing or bad, I cannot tell you, my readers, how many times over the last 15-20 years I have been duped into this very awkward predicament. I’ve lost count. I kid you not.

Just this last week I had a couple I have known for years, first the wife as a long-distant close friend, then her husband too, who I pushed and pushed her to please involve her husband in everything we discussed and everything she wanted to do with me in person —wide open, all the time. Nothing hidden from him. But she refused.

Just last week they “celebrated” their 20-year marriage anniversary and she publicly stated (I’m paraphrasing only a tiny bit):

Sooo much has happened these twenty-years… so many memorable, remarkable, special-times and experiences, and just as many difficult bumps in our road together. Marriage ain’t for the faint-hearted!! LOL I love this man, and he is my best friend. He’s an incredible Dad, protector, repairman, and bozo.

This same woman has carried on a 3-year affair with another man her husband never knew about, still doesn’t know about, and has carried on two separate long-distant phone-sex affairs for several years with two old ex-boyfriends (one of them married with children) and her husband doesn’t know about them either. He also doesn’t know about a one-day stand this past March in a hotel room with a fourth man.

Is it right to hide anything from your spouse? Is it right or healthy to keep secrets from your 20-year spouse several sexual-romantic affairs from him or her under false pretenses? More importantly, is that REALLY a testimony of “true love” to your own children, much less the world? Of course not!

When I read her above public statement to family, friends, and the world… I honestly could not stop laughing in disappointment, deep disappointment. Reading her husband’s beautiful tribute to her and pride in their “marriage” caused me to then get nauseated with pity for him/them, because he has no real clue whatsoever who his wife of 20-22 years is truly. It broke my heart to read their public proclamations, especially for their children who believe (falsely) their parents are perfectly and happily married even after many difficult bumps in our road together. Sadly, this woman, a former friend, doesn’t really know what brutal honesty is, the kind Paolo Coelho bluntly describes:

Paolo Coelho quote

Or make them believe in false-realities. I finally had to break-off, breakaway from her and our risky, precarious, dishonest friendship. It hurts what she became because there was so much hope for her as well as her husband to get hardcore real with each other. But in the end she was a scared, confused woman struggling with being true to herself. Consequently, she was becoming a prude, more and more untrustworthy drowning in her fear, denial, and endless excuses no matter what I tried to warn her about. It was just no longer worth it, especially when over the last 6-10 months she would fire nasty, self-absorbed exceptions/barbs and retaliations at me over ridiculous, trivial, insignificant, knit-picky things about me… like Jackie Melfi is describing here in her exceptional Feb. 2016 blog-post. Let me continue with her wisdom:

What I love about this story is my husband gets to put his strengths (his ability to give sound advice) to others without me being afraid. How much the world would miss if I tried to keep him all to myself.

As I laid in my bed at home reading, John was hundreds of miles away with a woman in his hotel room. He called me several hours later to tell me the evening went well. They spent those hours talking. In that moment I loved my husband with just a little more gusto.

I was so proud of him, not because he hadn’t had sex with her, but because he is so loving. Loving enough to share with others what he has learned in life. I allowed myself to be filled with gratitude for this amazing man. A man, who not only loves me, but strives to be loving to everyone. I love him even more because of this.

Jackie is so incredibly lucky to have John, and equally as well, John is so very lucky to have Jackie. What a rare, almost unheard of healthy, thriving marriage and complete trust they share together! They are one of my top heroes of couples I know and deeply respect.

But the story doesn’t end here. The very next evening, John had another opportunity to visit with a female friend. This visit was different. It was the same in the sense that I knew it was going to take place. John told me she had asked him to dinner and that he wasn’t sure how the evening would end. It was different in what happened.

John arrives at her home. She has prepared a scrumptious home cooked meal for them to share. To make a long story short, they ended up having sex. While they were having sex, she told John she still loved and cared about him.

Okay, so this is the dreaded scenario most people fear and will attempt to control from happening with their partner. Like I said earlier, it’s that fear of, “but what if your partner or the person they are playing with, fall in love?”

What if they do?

A symbolic menagerie of deep, exhaustive, liberating love:

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This is where the true, brutally honest definition of Compersion is demonstrated in our Open Lifestyle! Personally, I liken compersion to feeling the same level of joy I’d experience with my own two kids when they experienced unbelievable euphoria in another or in an event they are immersed inside. Jackie’s response and attitude to her husband afterwards is quite stoic and admirable, if I may say so myself. Bravo Jackie, bravo! I wish more husbands and wives strove HARD to get out of themselves and develop/nurture this same positive, appreciative, truly exhaustive love that Jackie and John share and model. Her conclusion is remarkably mature. Read it closely.

This is what I thought about this woman loving my husband. First, I was touched and honored because she see’s the same great qualities in John that I do. It made me like her even more. I mean of course she would love him, what’s not to love?!

Besides, just because she loves him, doesn’t mean John’s and my love for each other diminishes in any way. This woman simply adds another layer to our life. What’s not to love about that?

Can you imagine the stress and anger and fear and jealousy the evening could have had, especially using the traditional viewpoint?

First of all, John wouldn’t have even been “allowed” to go over to her home to begin with. My adult husband would not have been “allowed.” Even typing this makes me shake my head. John definitely wouldn’t have been able to share how wonderful the meal was, because I might be threatened by her ability to cook and I would probably lose John over her culinary skills! Instead of being threatened I instead have 3 new amazing recipes to try!

John returned home from his trip in great spirits and was eager and excited to see me. He told me over and over how much he loved me and how grateful he is to have such an amazing relationship.

My point is, we don’t have control over who we end up having feelings for, regardless of whether or not we think we can control it. I am so glad that John and I don’t try to control it. We embrace the love we have for those we come in contact with and relish in the goodness of this love.

John and I became a couple so we could add to each others life, not take things away.

As Jackie writes about facing your misplaced fears, embracing our own vulnerabilities and your partner’s/spouse’s, and as I know and have known so very many fairy-tale, falsely-based marriages full of secret locked closets and rugs bulging up with many unwanted 500 lbs. gorillas and pink elephants (silence), this raw hardcore honest, vulnerable love DOES EXIST. There are many paths and justifications to never-ending marital doubts, suspicions, and minefields of unhappy marriage/prison… and then there is one or two truly liberating, fulfilling, sometimes arduous sometimes fiercely real, correct paths to finding and living inside love that is completely set free and encouraged to stay completely free as Jackie speaks about. Believe me, I know. I’ve watched and experienced both. There is no comparison.

Fear stifles, courage fulfills. “The prude is in fact the libertine, without the courage to face their naked soul.” — A.S. Neill.

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Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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Monsters

When all’s been said and done
And another day’s begun
When the lines go on and on
And all you’ve got is gone
You’ve doused yourself in sin
And the daylight’s creeping in
When the shadows start to grow, oh
Maybe it’s time to go?
Maybe it’s time to go?
Maybe it’s time to go?

Panic sets in and paranoia grows, push the darkness as deep as it will go… so no one knows? Hide or run away, while life unravels and frays?

When all’s been said and done
No distance left to run
When the emptiness arrives
And there’s nowhere left to hide
When it’s stacking up inside
From the corners of your mind
When the teardrops start to flow, oh
Maybe it’s time to go?
Maybe it’s time to go?

Baby, I’ve got the monsters
Baby, I’ve got the monsters
Baby, I’ve got the monsters
Baby, I’ve got the monsters, again
Baby, I’ve got the monsters
Baby, I’ve got the monsters
Baby, I’ve got the monsters, again

Maybe it’s time to go?
Maybe it’s time to go?

Anxiety manifests in many forms from a plethora of causes. They can be social in nature, relational as the music video profoundly illustrates, they can be general in nature, for example from sociopolitical stressors and volatile unrest. They can be phobias of separation, or even medical-genetic in nature. Some anxieties are normal, common, some recurring, maybe chronic but manageable, and yet others are progressively inflamed and worsen if unidentified and untreated professionally.

The great news? All of it can be treated and managed successfully, even cured. There is always hope. But doing nothing or ignoring the problem sometimes makes everything worse…

They’re creeping up, again
They’re creeping up, again
They’re creeping up, again
They’re creeping up, again

Monsters by Empathy Test

Approximately 40-million Americans suffer from anxiety disorders, or ≈18% of the population. Though acute anxiety is very easily treatable and quite successful, only 37% address it or receive treatment.

Do you have any anxiety monsters that creep up? Do they cause havoc in your life? Share any of your thoughts about unidentified and untreated anxiety monsters, perhaps those in your immediate or extended family or in your circle of friends? How does “anxiety” touch or effect you, directly or indirectly?

For help with Anxiety Disorders and/or Depression, call the national helpline of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

For more information on Anxiety Disorders go to the Mayo Clinic’s webpage here.

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Live Well — Love Much — Laugh Often — Learn Always

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Every Single Cell-Phone

Last night on PBS NOVA, Decoding COVID-19, the award-winning science show since 1974 aired a most intriguing, informatively packed episode about our current progress and fight against the Coronavirus pandemic. From their website introduction:

In an unprecedented global effort to understand and contain the virus—and find a treatment for the disease it causes—is underway. Join doctors on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19 as they strategize to stop the spread, and meet the researchers racing to develop treatments and vaccines.

Life and Survival vs. Loss of Privacy

In the latter portion of the show doctors and scientists discuss how all biophysicists, epidemiologists, virologists, geneticists, pathologists, everyone around the world in these scientific fields are racing to find a vaccine. A vaccine that can take up to 2-years of testing and manufacturing before it reaches the Earth’s population.

Meanwhile, the only defense we humans have at the moment is monitoring, managing, then restricting our social behavior. In Wuhan, China, the first epicenter of the COVID-19 outbreak, on April 8, 2020, Chinese authorities reopened the city and province for business. Residents were allowed to travel and move about in public with face-masks. The emotional, mental, and social benefits for Wuhan residents was enormous. However, life in Wuhan was/is nowhere near back to normal.

Wuhan residents, healthcare doctors,  and government officials have a serious concern and fear of a second resurgence of COVID-19 infections soon after reopening. This is justified. And so many restrictions are still in effect there. For example, anyone entering or leaving a building, property, park, or space are required (by law?) to use their cell-phone to scan in, upload special location-marking codes to a regional database. Gates of complexes, condominiums, stadiums, malls, entertainment events, parks, all have entry and exit stations, policed by security guards where every single person must scan a QR-code using a phone app at all specific entry/exit points, with your specific health condition, and based upon everyone else’s health-data condition that has been near you at the same time. Your color-coded COVID-19 warning-status is constantly updated. Green? You’re good, free to move about as you please as long as you have not been near another risk or high-risk person. Yellow or Red codes mean you will not be allowed to enter or exit before medical attention arrives. For those two color-codes, further medical testing, removal and possibly immediate quarantine may be required.

These measures in Wuhan have seemingly been very effective in squashing new outbreaks. They also have further benefits in conjunction with widespread testing. Everyone with a cell-phone will get multiple notifications of anyone who has been in near-contact with you wherever you’ve traveled. Without a doubt, for a lethal pandemic such as SARS-CoV-2 this level and complexity of monitoring is ideal for public health and safety until an effective vaccine arrives.

Therefore, here is my question for you, my readers and followers:

Is your own personal privacy more important than other people’s life and well-being?

In this day and age of hyper-sophisticated electronic technology and the fact that almost all of Earth’s human beings possess a cell-phone packed with GPS monitoring data for wireless providers and other mega-corporations to purchase and to use, is your personal privacy, movement data, and social activity more important than stopping and reducing COVID-19 from wiping out millions of the human race, possibly even taking your life, or someone dear to and deeply loved by you? Would these type of Chinese-inspired data-sets and phone apps help incompetent American leadership in any way for tracking COVID-19 infections, its hot-spots, and then assisting in testing kits and potential hospital admissions?

Yes? No? Maybe? Unsure?

Share your thoughts and feelings below. When is it right to Take One for the Team, the Village, and when is 24/7 electronic intrusion too much and goes too far for some group of questionable people of greed and control?

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Live Healthier — Love More — Laugh with Family/Friends — Learn More Science

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