The Difference Between Love and Sex


I was watching last Friday’s episode of Battlestar Galactica last night and was struck by something.

In case you haven’t been watching there in an ongoing affair between Starbuck and Apollo, both of whom are married to other people. They are struggling because Apollo wants them to divorce and get married, but Starbuck thinks divorce is a sin. But Starbuck is OK with them cheating on their spoused for sex, but Apollo wants it to stop because its a sin.

In the scenes from next week we see Starbuck and her husband, who loves her, asking her if she loves Apollo and then saying “If you love him you should go to him”.

This is STUPID. OK the whole thing is the kind of stupid people get into, but that line is extra dumb.

To me though the problem is that both Starbuck and Apollo are confusing sex and love. Not in the normal way people confuse it, meaning having sex with someone means you love them, or that it is completely separate. The idea you can have “recreational” sex with out emotional involvement is a myth.

That’s not where these two are having a problem. Their problem is they think you have to have sex with someone because you love them.

Starbuck and Apollo love each other. They should, they’ve known each other for years. They’ve been through hell together. They have close connections through Apollo’s family. They love each other.

That doesn’t mean they have to have sex.

That’s the problem. They can love each other in a deep sense like what they are – comrades in arms and life long friends. They may even love each other deeper than they love their spouses because they’ve loved each other longer.

This belief that love has to be consummated with sex is the under current of a lot of problems we have. Homosexuality is another example. I don’t know if it is the chicken or the egg. Does our acceptance of homosexuality cause us to think we have to treat all people as possible sex partners regardless of gender? Or does our belief we have to have sex with anyone we love make us accept homosexuality?

Today men can’t have a deep love relationship with other men. We don’t have any concept of that kind of relationship that the members of WWII units had. Where they continued to love, in both the emotional and action based sense, for their whole lives. Taking care of each other and each other’s family their whole lives.

Today if you have strong caring feelings about a member of the same sex you start to wonder if you are gay, because we can’t understand how you could love someone and not need to have sex with them.

This is one of those things that we are culturally blind to. We don’t even understand what the underlying belief causing these things to happen. We accept that Starbuck and Apollo have to have sex if they love each other.

We need to step back and try and determine our beliefs. As do Starbuck and Apollo.

One Comment

  1. The Mayday Martyr says:

    That’s very insightful. I’m a man, and there are some men in my life that I love very much, and I totally know what you mean when you say that men these days can’t have deep love relationships with other men without people thinking that he’s gay.

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