I am, dare I say, a woman’s fiction writer…but I am writing about love. Does that put me into the romance genre? An agent noted my pace and tone was the that of the romance genre, but not quite that. I had to think about that for awhile. I thought I was writing about romance. But I didn’t want to be a romance novelist. I wanted something…..’not that,’ as the agent continued to evaluate my work. And that is just it. I am not writing romance, I am writing about love. Love between friends, father/daughter, mother/daughter, cousins, man and woman, etc.
I write about the loving bonds between people. I write about love…in its purest form, and in its sexual form. There is both…but do we know the difference?
That is just the thing….romance and love are not synonymous. But in this crazy American culture, where at twelve, kids are prevented from hugging each other because it is considered sexual, or a teacher cannot hold the hand of a small child to comfort them, or two men can’t hug without looking or feeling judged…well, need I say more? We don’t know the boundaries of sex and love.
I think we haven’t perfected our spiritual development where we can acknowledge a love for someone without a sexual aspect to it. If two men really find joy with one another, they start to question if they are gay. If two women really love each other, they are told to have sex with each other to “experience” those feelings. If two little boys are holding hands across the blacktop, they are labeled at the age of seven! Kissing someone on the lips is considered a sexual act. (I didn’t say, spreading their lips and tongue lashing…..) Reaching out and touching someone on the arm or leg is considered hostile or inappropriate. All these feelings of “love” are deemed wrong. How sad is that? Loving someone is cautioned. Feeling a deeper love for someone is taboo. Sharing those feelings is critiqued and criticized.
Well, I guess I must be a sexual predator for I am guilty of so many offenses. I love deeply. My heart is big and my meaning to show it is…well, inappropriate. I touch, kiss, hug, hold, grab all for the sake of being human. Our energy that surrounds us is important to our spiritual bonds to one another. To tap into that stream of energy feeds our souls. Yet, we are being driven further and further away from the very thing that makes us human.
I will admit it is hard to separate the attraction from the feeling of love. It seems very natural to want to be sexual with someone you have such deep feelings for. But yet, at the same time, I don’t want to have sex with everyone I deeply love. So, thus, it can co-exist. Loving someone can be deep and meaningful without wanting to French kiss the person! I have friends I love with the deepest of feelings. Men and women alike. When I am with them my heart sings, I am giddy, and I want to reach out and touch them to share how happy they make me feel inside. What is wrong with that???? Nothing, I say. Absolutely nothing!
I hug my girlfriends all the time. I walk arm and arm with them just to let them know I am feeling love for them. But I have never….yes, not even in college on a drunken night, wanted to sleep with my girlfriends.
I have lots of male friends. Okay…maybe not lots…but quite a few. (Probably more than an average married woman.) I have old and young, recent, and long time friends…some are really handsome. (My husband need not be jealous…for he is just as handsome!) Yet, I can actually find them attractive and still not want to sleep with them! (Okay, maybe there is one out there that I have had lascivious thoughts about…but they will have to fight among themselves to figure out who. Ha ha.) I can honestly say I “love” them deeply and truly…and love to spend time with them. But I know the difference of loving them, and sexing them. (I am sure my husband is relieved that I can differentiate!)
Love is a wonderful thing. It is a beautiful thing. It really should be rejoiced and celebrated. It should also be taught how to love someone outside of the confines of sexuality. We would be such a nicer civilization if we could do that. To reach out and touch someone..to make that spiritual connection is really the fulfillment of life. It is only with our bodies that we are separated by our souls. We need to tap into our souls to once again find our connection. But we are failing because of our limitation we are setting for ourselves. I am not saying it is easy. I am just saying it is possible.
I write books about love. Is there a genre for “Love?” But love isn’t just romance. It is so much more…and I hope my books can help bring our humanity a little closer to understanding that.