More than one

More than one

“But that's not necessarily true. The idea that love has to be confined to only one person is a myth and most likely what we were brought up to believe that,” say relationship experts.

Geetha (name changed) didn’t want to displease her parents, so she agreed to marry the man they chose for her although she was in love with a colleague. “It was terrible at first but I knew my father would be very upset if I told him I wanted to marry someone from another religious background so I went along with it. I am now happily married and my husband is kind and loving but I still have feelings for my ex. We see each other everyday and it’s not easy. I will be moving abroad soon,” she says.

Hassan and Priya had a live-in relationship for three years. Both their families lived in other cities. She left for England to pursue her studies and he married a girl his parents chose for him. Neither told their parents about their relationship as they were sure it would never work because of cultural differences. After she returned to Bangalore, they keep in touch and share pieces of their life with each other but keep their friendship platonic.

“Most people don't entertain the possibility that love can extend to two individuals at the same time, because it is scary to be in such a confusing state. Having said that, I am not sure if people who are absorbed in their feelings for one person are actually incapable of having feelings for someone else or whether they simply do not allow themselves to have such feelings,” says Suma Ranganthan, a marriage counsellor.

Shireen found love successfully after a badly failed marriage. “We easily accept that one can go from a past love to a future love in the case of divorce or death of a spouse. But some people never seek or find another love because of a sense of devotion to their departed mate or the fear of of beginning again with a new partner.  Such people may be incapable of loving more than one person,” she explains.

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