Although it began as a Catholic holiday named for two Christian martyrs named Valentine (only associated with romance from the 14th century), Valentine’s Day always reminds me of the most important intimate connections I have in my life. All of us begin life in the most intimate of ways and many of us go through it hoping to regain some semblance of our original feelings of emotional connection. As David Schnarch points out in his wonderful book, Passionate Marriage, the most important component of ‘hot sex’ (i.e. chemistry), is an emotional connection. We almost rejoice in a spontaneous feeling of recognition when we meet someone who inspires this experience in us.
When it comes to the dance of emotionally committed relationships — whether in the form of lovers, friends or family — how we come together and how well we communicate determines how well we get along. Just like a sense of rhythm in dancing, relating well has everything to do with a good sense of timing between two people.