Whatever we water will grow. If we want the thoughts to stop growing, we must stop watering them, change the channel in our mind, and learn to focus our energy on what truly needs our attention. This is how we grow a different, and more peaceful, garden in our minds.
If we act on every thought or feeling that darts through mind or heart we will be as untamed as a toddler. By contrast, when we learn to train the mind and discipline the heart, we learn to act from our values and commitments.
You can learn to love the one you're with and create a sex life and feeling of love based on closeness instead of distance and mystery. Despite what the popular culture says, it's entirely possible! And entirely wonderful.
After the initial honeymoon stage fades (and having a honeymoon stage is not a prerequisite for a healthy relationship), feeling in love is an experience that is cultivated primarily through the intersection of two actions.
We may watch a relationship unfold over several years on a television series, but by the time the couple finally gets married, the conflicts are resolved and the show usually ends. And therein lies the false message.
The "Am I gay?" question points to two of the most challenging concepts for the anxious mind to accept, especially when you're on the verge of marriage: that love is a choice and that there are no guarantees or certainties regarding the outcome of this choice.
I used to be surprised by the number of clients who would share stories about the ways in which grade school peers (including siblings) would taunt, tease, and torture them, but now it's one of the first questions I ask when a client presents with the fear of intimacy.
In the end, fear is fear, and we either accept the task of working with it consciously and diligently or we walk away from loving, solid relationships with the erroneous belief that "It just didn't feel right. If it was right, I wouldn't have to work so hard."