Intellectual, physical, and emotional chemistry. 

It’s been two weeks since I met Sevag. Only two weeks, even though we’ve seen each other more than ten times in that time frame. Is that like dog age dating? Each week is like seven? Perhaps. Even so, I’m challenged to explain (to me, to Sevag, and to my friends) how there are some things which just feel so right and so perfect, and others I’m still wary of.

I was at a sporting event with a close friend this week. I told her some of the things he’s told me, like “I’m falling in love with you, Ann”, and at first she, like everyone else, scoffed at the sentiment and his presumed impulsiveness. “Who could say such a thing so soon?” is the common refrain. I didn’t defend him other to say we did have a strong connection and he speaks from the heart.

Then later, I mentioned where he was from. He’s middle eastern, for those who have asked.

“Oh!” she said. “Forget all the stuff I said earlier…it all makes sense now. You’re good.”

Turns out she’d dated a similar man a decade ago, and also experienced the passion and expressiveness that seems to be just how they roll. If any of you have experience in such matters, I’d love to hear your opinion.

He tells me to just let him be who he is. He knows his feelings make me nervous and I’m skeptical, but it doesn’t stop him from expressing them – although he did say he would try to not freak me out.

I’m not freaking out, I’m just waiting for the “oh, yeah, it’s too bad about X”, which will signal the thing that prevents us from continuing to move forward.

In contrast to Fox, when Sevag told me about his love and I didn’t reciprocate, he didn’t get hurt or petulant. He didn’t say things that made me feel guilty. Sevag simply said he knew I wasn’t in the same place and he hoped someday I would be. It was not an issue…which I really appreciate.

This is how I’m thinking about things with him at this point:

Intellectually, we are as close to a perfect match as I’ve ever had – even better than my ex-husband Will. It’s not just intellectual horsepower, which is what Tony and I also shared. It’s about the actual things we believe and how we approach challenges. Tony didn’t talk much about how he felt or what he believed, whereas Sevag and I talk about everything. He’s an open about his feelings as discussions about God and reincarnation or what’s happening in the world. Our alignment is what drove a big part of our perfect OK Cupid match, I believe.

There is nothing else I need to experience with him to know that this is amazing.

Physically, things are wonderful so far. Our first sexual experience was great for a first time, and I can see it just getting better. He’s skilled and likes to take control in the bedroom, which is what I like. I believe he will try a lot of things, but he’s not particularly kinky. He is not likely to be the man to share me with others (although he was interested in going to a sex club). Could this be a problem for me? Maybe.

But like height, it’s not a deal breaker for me. If I can be with someone who gives me intellectual, emotional, and physical pleasure, and is otherwise a good partner? Not sure I need more sex club experiences to have a full life…and it wasn’t like I ever had the opportunity to test my sex club / occasional swinging stuff in a long term relationship anyway.

Emotionally? Well, this is one area where frankly I think I need more time to sort out how strong our alignment is. Whenever I wrote of the amazing intellectual and physical connection Tony and I had, several of you sagely pointed out the emotional seemed to be missing.

This is the stuff I think about when I say I need to see how someone is when they are angry or stressed, or how they are with their friends. It’s the stuff outside of intellectual and physical and other than having a sense that things will work, I don’t know I can figure it out quickly. Because don’t we say what we want to be true, versus how we really are?

So when I think of Sevag, it’s the emotional and practical stuff I just don’t know yet. I won’t know until we experience more things together.

And as I learned with Tony, I can have a great intellectual and physical connection but if the emotional is missing, a relationship just isn’t going to work.

41 thoughts on “Intellectual, physical, and emotional chemistry. 

  1. Yep, there are no shortcuts. Time is the only thing that can reveal these things. In the meantime, enjoy what good parts you already know you have, and the emotional/behavioral aspects will reveal themselves, for better or worse, in time and you can assess where things stand at that point.

    • Good plan!! What’s starting to stress me out a little is he’s just already there, and I don’t see how it’s possible without him spending more time with me. I *think* he assesses love based on the intellectual and physical, and a presumption of the emotional. Whereas I’m a bit more “trust but verify” in my approach.

      • Yeah, he could also just be caught up in new relationship energy, and that can definitely be putting him on fast forward emotionally. As you know, it takes time to truly know someone and all their traits, quirks and tendencies once they let their guard down, and there’s no shortcut for that.

        Either way, as long as he’s not rushing or pressuring you to get somewhere that you’re not yet, it’s all good.

  2. That he is Turkish explains everything to me as well, and I think I was one of the ones who asked about his heritage. Years ago, between my divorce and meeting my present DH, I met and dated a young Turk who was one of the most interesting and amazing people I think I have ever met. He was the same way as Sevag about emotions – open, expressive, and absolutely opulent in his praise and affection toward me. By the time we had dated 4 months he was pursuing a serious, engagement-level commitment, but was patient and understanding at my hesitation. Obviously that did not work out, but primarily because I was newly divorced, insanely insecure, had 3 young children, and did I mention insanely insecure? He was patient, kind, generous, and amazing to my kids. But the ultimate deal breaker was his gypsy soul, a strong desire to travel and pursue different opportunities all over the world, an impossible thing for me and a young family. We parted as friends when he chose to pursue his original plan to return to Europe for work and to spend some time with his family after his VISA expired. At the time many of my friends were skeptical, openly stating that he was seeking an American wife as a pathway to citizenship. I never really believed that, though, and after more than 25 years, a second marriage for me, 2 marriages and 2 divorces (no children from either) for him, he remains one of my most steadfast and loyal friends. I know he has his flaws, but I love and adore him to this day.

    When my oldest daughter died, he was living and working in Russia. He got the first flights he could book to my town and made it to her memorial service with just enough time to check in to a hotel, shower, shave, and dress. Jet lagged, tired, grieving with us, he spoke at her memorial and wept sharing his remembrances of her. It was the first time he had met my DH, and whereas before M had been kind of wary of this old and somewhat serious boyfriend, that day they bonded like brothers.

    All that said, I have no idea where things will go with Sevag, but try hard to check your analytical brain that is trying to build a roadmap and just enjoy the moments with him. Maybe there is no other shoe out there dangling above you or perhaps there is a built-in shelf life for this relationship. But right here, right now, he sounds like a good man who meets a lot of your needs and desires. Enjoy that and trust yourself, and him, that things will evolve and you will both be strong enough, wise enough, to weather any storm as a couple or as individuals.

    I am super happy for you and what you have found, Ann. Hopefully the positives continue to build.

    • Such an amazing and beautiful story, Janelle!!

      There could be no other shoe waiting to drop. But it’s hard for me to understand how he can feel so passionately about me already, which makes me doubt it. I’m definitely projecting onto him and trying not to.

      • Your posts about Sevag (so sorry – I was the projecting one when I wrote Ari) made me reach out and say hi to my pal and get a gut-check from him. He simply said this is his culture, passionate and expressive, very different than so many of the “shallow and cold-fish Americans (present company excluded of course) ….” He also says there are players and posers and bad men everywhere, as every woman knows. But as always I have hopes for the best for you in all things, and no matter what, he sounds like a truly extraordinary and amazing man who recognizes and appreciates an extraordinary woman when he meets her. 🙂

        • how fun to hear Ari’s perspective. I suspect part of my doubt comes from how I break things down…meaning I hold the emotional / practical stuff in high regard because – for example – with Tony it wasn’t enough that we had intellectual and physical chemistry. Whereas I think Sevag just approaches it differently. I think he’s the type of man who says wow, here’s this amazing woman and we just “get” each other… and the rest will sort itself out.

  3. As you know, your questions will be answered in time. He is propelling this relationship forward at a breakneck speed, but it sounds as though you are slowing things down when your instincts tell you to. I was curious about his ethnicity as well. My ex-husband is from that part of the world and he was SO charming and passionate. His controlling and jealous nature became untenable for me eventually. I am not trying to generalize, but your description of Sevag hits very close to home for me–his name, physical description, personality etc. This will be an interesting relationship for you.

    • Thanks Holly! He is definitely at a place I’m not at yet. Reality is I need to just see day to day life with him and take it from there. Certainly right now there is a ton of great stuff to enjoy.

      He’s jealous and he freely admits that. But the control I haven’t see as much. My gut isn’t yelling at me about control as yet… he and I had a conversation about Tony in which he said all the right things, and I didn’t pick up on any real issues. Time will tell!!

  4. I did have some Turkish friends in London. They are very kind and warm hearted, and will go to great lengths for the people they love. They are good people ☺️

    • I’ve always found it fascinating when we are able to say we like a “people”… but I do know what you mean. There are definitely cultural norms that influence. He’s very western in his opinions – without getting into too much detail I will say he doesn’t ascribe to many of the beliefs that he was raised with – so for me I haven’t experienced anything that concerns me around attitudes toward women, ownership, that kind of thing.

  5. It sounds like you are having an awesome time with him. Don’t overthink this.
    I did have a few Turkish friends when I lived in London. They are very kind and warm hearted (though I never had a Turkish boyfriend).

  6. I’m curious – is there any man in a serious relationship who is comfortable with sharing his S.O. with someone else? Even in a sex club? Or anywhere?

        • Oh the clubs we have in my city are considered more sex clubs than swingers clubs. Meaning it could be both. Some people go because they like to watch, or have sex in public. He’s curious what it’s like. Baby steps 🙂

          • That he is curious is wonderful! And I know what you mean. I’ve been to a couple of them in my city a few times. Sometimes watching is enough. 😉

          • We talked about it some more this week. I can’t see him ever getting to a place where he’s willing to “let” another man touch me… but he also recognizes if it’s something I want, we’ll need to talk about it.

  7. Turkish men can be just like other men. Every male in my family treat their wives like royalty and are effusive with their love & affection. But then there’s others that aren’t so great too that I’ve known through family friends. #YMMV

    • Absolutely!! And I love that hashtag (had to look it up!)

      The combination of european and middle eastern is fascinating to me…. and he’s definitely far more expressive and passionate than any man I’ve ever dated. Is that just because of who he is, versus his culture? Not sure… but when I explain he’s Turkish, people seem to then so “oh, right! of course” 🙂

      • I don’t know to be honest. Maybe it’s because I am Turkish so it’s just the way it is?

        Culturally we tend to be a very emotional bunch. Men & women. And we aren’t afraid of showing it if that’s what you mean. But like men in any culture you also have the bad apples.

        My uncles go lala over their wives even though they are all well into their 70s. But then, I’ve also seen the nasty side too (heaven forbid anyone cross them!)… Although in old age they’ve mellowed somewhat 🙂 Young Turkish guys are a newer breed than the old so one would hope that it’s all been whitewashed by now!

        • How did I not realize you were Turkish?! I could have just reached out for you to help me navigate. I can see the other side of it too with him – the angry passion as well. Sevag is almost 50… is that “younger”?

          • It’s not something I tend to tell people unless they ask 🙂

            Yeah, when I say we are an emotional bunch that includes the raging. Usually it doesn’t get violent, but it’s sometimes scary to behold when you aren’t used to it.

            Cern thinks my whole family is crazy and loud. That’s Turks in a nutshell lol

  8. Ann, write about your connection with Sevag, but I don’t think you have filled us in on where YOU are with the emotional connection. Please fill us in ( when you’re ready!

  9. Ann you are on the right course by keeping it slow. The relationship is moving too quickly to keep my suspicious thoughts at bay. I know your capable of using your discernment better these days to keep your emotions on track. You will either be so very happy to move forward or happy that you were cautious.

    • It’s hard for me to reconcile my analytical / suspicious side with the knowledge that he’s a mature, experienced, expressive, and passionate man who doesn’t believe in holding back. So I get the cynicism on your part.

      But I’m not being blind to anything, that’s for sure. Eyes wide open 🙂

  10. Hey ASV, just a heads up, in case you didn’t know, an if it matters:
    In this post about Sevag, I and some others address him in the comments by an earlier name. This is true in some other posts also. If you are cool with it:
    I just stopped to say HI!!

What do you think?