“We don’t create a fantasy world to escape reality. We create it to be able to stay.” – Lynda Barry
All of us have three lives; the public, the private, and the fantasy life.
In our public lives we share what we want others to know and think about us. Those in the real public purview have a difficult time hiding anything, especially these days.
Shy or introverted people keep to themselves, while outgoing extroverted types are out there. What the world or people close to us thinks; matters. We put on a show, so to speak. For some it is easy and for many having others know us at all is not comfortable.
How many times have you heard he was not who I thought he was? The public persona is often a real myth. Sometimes we expose aspects of who we are without giving a hoot. Other times we are very careful. It may depend on with whom we are. A boss, a new love, an in-law… What we are as a compilation may be a great mystery to the outside world.
Privately we are and should be somewhat different. What goes on behind those closed doors is indeed private. No one knows what happens there except the people who are there living it. As a therapist I get to hear those stories and many are shocking, and often unbelievable.
The rational everyday lives of people are difficult. I often think of women’s lives in the past that were made up of all day and night shopping and preparing food, cleaning, and doing laundry. It left little time for any other reality.
Today, of course, women still are the primary keepers of home and hearth and child rearing but there is much help; dishwashers, washing machines, take-out food and so on. Privately people take out their frustrations and hurts and anger at home where it is thought to be private and safe. When the truth comes out as it often does, everyone is shocked. Who could have guessed?
All of the scandals, especially of celebrities and well-known people is overwhelming. It can include abuses at home with spouse or children, dishonest dealing having to do with money, drugs, sex acts, and any number of things that you can think about. The public face and the real face privately are two different faces.
At times it can just be a release of inhibition or free spiritedness that is allowed at home. It can feel safe there.
Now the fantasy self is another story. A guy walking down the beach kicking stones sees a genie pop up. The genie says you can have three wishes. He says; I would like peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians. And the second wish. Everyone in the world to have all the food they need. How about for you, personally. Well, I’d like my wife to do whatever I like sexually, oral sex, in particular. The first two; no problem. That third one…. impossible; except for fantasy.
Fantasy. We all need it and use it in a variety of areas. Kids want to be cops. Teens want to be the most popular. Adults want any number of things; money is a big one. Movies and TV and the Internet offer help to stoke this fire.
Fantasy can play a huge part in the creative juices. BUT it is in the area of horizontal versus vertical life that fantasy plays its’ largest role. Who do you think about besides your partner in bed? What do you wish they would do? What do you imagine yourself doing?
Can your fantasy ever become a reality? It has for some. And then again, it has cost many a big price. How many people in the public eye have been exposed with their pants down? Answer; lots. Can the three YOUS be merged into a complete whole person? The answer is a resounding, yes!
It happens when you are comfortable in who you are and you bring out the you, you choose, when you wish. Some people share all of themselves with others or a significant other. How nice is that? Talk about freedom!!
“I have a private life in which I do not permit interference. It must be respected.” – Vladimir Putin
Who are you… in three words. What is your fantasy? What secrets do you have?