Love has been discussed by poets and philosophers from time immemorial, but it is only relatively recently that it has received the attention it deserves from medical men and psychiatrists. It is still a mystery, and likely to remain so; but much has been discovered concerning this most absorbing of all the passions; and as this knowledge increases, it is to be hoped that humanity will become better, healthier and happier.
Men and women differ in their approach and attitude toward love, as they do in most other things! There can be no doubt that a harmonious sex-life adds charm and romance to the union; and if this is satifactory, many faults and shortcomings will be readily overlooked.
Idyllic love should constitute the basic of every marriage, but this must not be confused with mere physical attraction. Other factors should be considered too, as before emphasized. Too much sex may well end in satiety, just as too little may result in frustration and disappointment. Young couples should realize that their first transports of joy will not last forever; and that, after the first thrill and excitement has abated, they should still find in the other their ideal, happiness and contentment.
Boys and girls undoubtedly possess a sort of vital magnetism, which is polarized, as it is in the case of electricity or magne’ tism. They represent the positive and negative poles in nature, as typified by their sexes; unlike poles attract, while like poles repel one another. Too great freedom in contact between the sexes tends to lessen this magnetic attraction; on the other hand, keeping the sexes completely apart, as they were in most European schools until recently, prevents them from under’ standing one another and treating each other naturally. A hap’ py medium should be found, in which this contact between the sexes is permitted, without allowing it to become too intimate.
In short, marriage should be based upon love plus common sense. Either of these in itself is not enough. But if they are both present, there is every likelihood of the marriage being a lasting success, carrying the couple through years of close and intimate companionship. This is what marriage should be.