Define Relationships

What constitutes healthy relationships?

When I say ” relationships, ” I mean romantically intimate human interaction, and there are many ways these relationships are had.

An array of needs must be fulfilled in our relationships to be happy, though the convention, it is difficult to have them all fulfilled by a single person. Some find contentment, accepting that some needs won’t be fulfilled, others don’t; some are in constant search for the perfect intimate connection, by any means.

Watching the show, ” Seeking Sister-Wife ” on TLC, I saw a man searching for a second wife, and his wife wanting a sister-wife. In this addition to their marriage, both were seeking in another what they couldn’t find in each other. Though deeply in love, they needed more, so they found mutually pleasing means to do so. It may be socially abnormal, but does that mean unhealthy?

Something we strive to fulfill in prison is our need for intimate connection, something we are deprived of to the extreme, and like anything else, we find abstract ways of obtaining our goals. Some make connections with fellow prisoners, some connect with people who seek out connections with incarcerated person(s); some last, some don’t, some are transitory.

I once had a correspondence with a married woman, and some of our interactions were very intimate; our communications were a safe place for her to experiment with herself spiritually, emotionally, and pseudo-physically, allowing her to see her marriage in a new way. Our interactions, in the end, benefitted her marriage. Was it wrong to use me as an abstract stand-in to benefit her marriage?

I had another relationship, strained, and our interactions were sometimes aggressive and stressful. We tried to have a ” traditional relationship, ” when the parameters of prison made it, by definition, non-traditional, and it doomed us. Was it healthy to view our relationship through ” traditional ” lenses?

There are many different styles of relationships based on our desires and experiences, some may seem very abstract or abnormal, so I ask…

What constitutes a healthy relationship?

Image by Goran Horvat from Pixabay

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