Let's Talk About Love


Love is defined as “a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.”

Let’s think about that for a moment….and then let’s look at the two most important words in that definition….’another person’. Not ‘another person of the opposite sex’. Not ‘only as per a female toward a male, or a male toward a female.’ No…it distinctly says ANOTHER PERSON.

You get where I’m going with this. And if you’re offended….buh-bye. I rarely take a vocal stand on anything deemed ‘political’, mostly because as I’ve said MANY times, I despise politics and anyone associated with it. That being said, keeping my mouth closed on the subject of love is not something I’m at all comfortable with. Not as a woman. Not as a human being.

I’m going to back-up a sec and give you a bit of perspective. I was born in the late 60’s, a child of the 70’s, with parents who frequently welcomed all folks of age, race and sexual orientation into our home. I was raised around couples; married couples, bi-racial couples, and gay couples. To me, they weren’t “gay”, they were just my friends, and they happened to be men. I was raised with an open heart and even broader open mind, and as such have raised my own kids the same way. Thank God I married a man who is very comfortable with his own sexuality (and equally open minded) to never be threatened by either my parent’s friends or my open mind.

I certainly won’t stand here and claim I’ve never judged another. I’m human, so of course I have. But my judgement has always been (and I’m certain will always remain) towards those who profess to lead a Christian life, then behave in a manner completely the opposite.

Christianity though is a debate for another time.

Where’s this all coming from, you ask? Well…to be honest…I’m gearing up for some (maybe a lot) of backlash from my own family and friends. You see, next year I plan to release a series of books all about love. No shocker there, right? But the love I speak of in this series is not between a man and woman, it is between two men.

For the most part, the majority of my family and friends are as equally as accepting and open minded about most things as I am. And while they have accepted my somewhat racy love stories as the wanderings of my curious brain, this may shock more than a few. I’m not apologizing…I’m just preparing. Which got me wondering….do other straight authors who write gay stories experience this odd form of trepidation? Don’t get me wrong, I AM NOT apologizing for my work. These stories are probably better than anything I’ve ever written….mostly because the challenge was enormous. Writing from a man’s point of view has always been more interesting to me than writing from a woman’s point of view. But a gay man’s perspective? Let’s just say…for a 51 year old straight momma of two, this was more than a challenge. One I pray will come to me again and again. I love my boys. I love their stories. And I look forward to more books such as these. I know I really love reading same sex stories. In fact, lately that’s all I read.

Love is defined as “a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.”

Okay…let’s break this down. Is the love in the stories I’ve read or written tender? Oh hell yes. Tender and genuine and break-your-heart angsty. Is the love in the stories I‘ve read or written passionate? Of course! Romance writing wouldn’t be romance writing if it wasn’t passionate.

So why are these stores any different than the stereotypical romance novel?

I do understand….gay sex scenes are not for everyone. Neither are triad sex scenes or bondage sex scenes. To each his/her own. For that matter, some of what I write is a bit too much for some of my readers. That’s okay. We all like what we like.

A male friend came to me recently and professed to “sleeping” with other men. I wasn’t shocked. I was thankful. Thankful he had me to come to, knowing full well I would not judge, and that I would be open minded and accepting just as I would have been had he told me he was sleeping with women. He never said any of that out loud, but the ease with which he professed his truth to me felt like a heavy responsibility on my shoulders. It is imperative that I always see people as I would want to be seen; someone who loves, someone who can be hurt, someone who feels deeply. Not a straight someone who loves-hurts-feels deeply…but a PERSON who loves-hurts-feels deeply. We are not defined by who we love. We are defined by HOW we love. As long as we are happy, treat one another with respect, and love with our whole hearts, it should never matter WHO we love.

Not too long ago I found myself reminding my mom that being gay is not a choice…and that regardless of who we love, as long as we’re happy nothing else should matter. I found the entire conversation ironic, since it was my parents who instilled this great open heart and mind in me. It got me wondering if our views change with age simply because we get old and crotchety (sorry Mom) or do we really fall that out of touch with the “people” part of life. Do we have less patience for bullshit in general and become more narrow-minded as a normal part of the aging process? I sure as hell hope not. I hope I never see people as anything more than HOW they love. I sure as hell hope my kids continue to accept everyone with an open heart.

From an outsider’s perspective, people tend to fixate far too much on the bedroom specifics of homosexual folks. Until and unless you’re willing to turn that same magnifying glass on your own sexual behavior, I suggest we all take a step back and look at the love aspect instead. People – regardless of who their sexual partner is – can be freaks in the bedroom. As long as what’s being done is consensual, it’s nobody’s business.

The bottom line here is that we don’t love differently at all. We all feel joy. We all feel pain. We all experience the crazy highs and lows that are a part of being in a relationship. We all have hopes and wishes and expectations.

We all just....love.

AJ

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