Category Archives: Triangles


“Making love with a woman and sleeping with a woman are two separate passions, not merely different but opposite. Love does not make itself felt in the desire for copulation (a desire that extends to an infinite number of women) but in the desire for shared sleep (a desire limited to one woman).”
―     Milan Kundera   “The Unbearable Lightness of Being”  

The Unbearable Lightness of Being – The Official Trailer

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If you read my earlier blogs of Jeremy and Peggy Sue, you know I have yet to write about Maggie. Briefly, Maggie is in a relationship with Jeremy, who is in a relationship with both Maggie and Peggy Sue.

Maggie has begun to trust her instincts that there is someone else in Jeremy’s love life-Peggy Sue. One day, Maggie confronts Jeremy about her suspicions. Jeremy gets angry, avoids the direct questions and overall is annoyed at the confrontation of whether he is lying about being in a relationship with someone else. After many arguments, Maggie finally presents proof that is undeniable. Is this the pivotal moment in their relationship?

Will he tell the truth and admit that he indeed has been carrying on a relationship with someone else? Can he commit to one woman? Can he commit to the responsible life that he says he wants? Can he forgive himself? Can he leave Peggy Sue once and for all? Or will he chance loosing Maggie?

Moreover, will Maggie forgive him?

Generally, the story goes that Jeremy would prefer to be with Maggie. Once the truth is known, healing can begin. But he has fallen from grace and Maggie will take a very long time to forgive, if ever.

The key to the success in this relationship is forgiveness and the belief that their relationship is worth mending and building. Jeremy’s relationship to Maggie transcends the immediacy of his transitory needs that he fulfills with Peggy Sue. His desire to be with Maggie can be said to be of a spiritual nature. The corporeal is not as important as their transcendence as a union. His love for Maggie is constant. He is aware of his need for her: Maggie inspires him.

Maggie knows she is valuable to him, but is he to her? Can she forgive or will someone else come into her life? She doubts and wonders whether his transgressions will be a pattern. It is he who must work hard to keep Maggie in his life; otherwise, the risk is she will move on. The next relationship for her should be a better one since she is the more integrated of the two or should I say three.

This ends this series of love triangles.

 If you haven’t read “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera-I highly recommend it. It was also made into a movie, well worth watching. I also recommend the movie “The Red Shoes” (1948) for more clarification on triangles in relationship as discussed in the last three posts.


The Red Shoes, The Choice: The Partner or the Obsession

Jeremy: His Shadows & Demons

The following is a fictional story of a man named Jeremy.

Jeremy is an attractive, successful, 36 year old  man with a good position at a company. He is in a relationship with Maggie, who he very much admires and loves; but he has not been able to commit to marrying her. His failure to commit is interfered with his relationship with a second woman, Peggy Sue.  According to Jeremy, Peggy Sue is not as intelligent, nor attractive, nor personable, nor as ambitious as Maggie. He also feels that Maggie would be a loyal wife and a good mother: important qualities for him because he hopes to start a family some day. He is confused about his apparent need to maintain a relationship with Peggy Sue, knowing that there is no future with her. He is critical of her because he feels her self-respect is often compromised:  he knows she’s involved sexually with other men.

At first glance, one may ask-what kind of attributes does she have that Jeremy refuses to relinquish her? Can the relationship be purely sexual in nature? But on further investigation, the allure for him is that Peggy Sue embodies a part of his personality that he has unwittingly cast off.

This “split off” part of him is unfitting for the persona that he has for himself. In other words, he has told himself a story of his life and this piece of himself just does not fit. Except when he meets someone like Peggy Sue, the “shoe fits”–they get along famously. She innately seems to understand him. Jeremy longs. Sometimes it borders on obsession to spend time with Peggy Sue. She is uncannily familiar. Since he has been critical of a part of himself, he now finds relief in finding qualities in someone else that he has cast off in himself. He toys with the familiar, the forbidden, the shadow of himself. In addition, it sometimes feels as if they have always known each other. He can be “himself” without criticism and reproach. He can indulge in the forbidden state of being: it is relishing and enticing.

Unfortunately, this presumed blissful state does not sustain, and soon enough the relationship with Peggy Sue is tumultuous. She wants more than just this compartmentalized piece of him whenever it suits him. In addition, he feels a great deal of shame from time to time after brief, intense encounters with her. Depending on what he needs to tell himself at the moment, he will either blame her for the seduction, blame Maggie for some trumped up reason why she is not enough or blame himself for making a foolish mistake for maintaining a relationship with Peggy Sue. He reenters his world of denial again and again. In truth he longs for retribution and a way out of the exhausting conflict and  unbearable feeling of shame.

But he hasn’t learned that Peggy Sue embodies what he simultaneously hates and longs to act out about himself. So what, you may ask, can be done about these unknown, destructive vestiges of the personality that interfere with building a life that he professes to want? Indulge from time to time? There is certainly the temptation to act out, but generally it will result in a repetitious pattern of disappointments. Psychotherapy or psychoanalysis is an arduous opportunity to identify the unconscious processes at work, an opportunity to feel and examine them rather than deny or run away from them and ultimately an opportunity to understand their beginnings, development and give them less power-all through continuous honest talk with someone who is neutral and willing to take you through the journey into the past to come out in the present fully integrated.

Shadows of our personalities can interfere in our ability to sustain happiness in relationships. It is paramount to understand ourselves well, in order to identify the shadows ,and integrate the unknown unconscious parts of our personalities.