The dictionary defines compersion as:
The feeling of joy one has experiencing another’s joy, such as in witnessing a toddler’s joy and feeling joy in response.
You can think of compersion as the opposite of envy. The envious response to the above would be feeling envy rather than joy when watching the toddler. Compersion is an interesting thing when applied to lovemaking. For example, my Kevin feels compersion when watching me have an orgasm even when he is not allowed one of his own.
Many would argue that jealousy is the opposite of compersion but I don’t think so. Envy is wanting what someone else has and jealousy is being upset about losing what you have. These two emotions are quite complicated but they are similar at their most basic level and all of them stem from insecurity.
I feel that compersion is one of the markers of true love. If I feel compersion toward you, I am quite literally valuing your feelings over my own. If I am feeling envious of you, I am wishing to take the feelings from you and make them my own. Envy in a relationship is toxic and will poison even the best relationship in short order.
Lots of things can trigger jealousy and envy but watch for these specific red flags:
- Possessiveness – You are not his property.
- Low Self-Esteem – You need a guy who knows who he is and is comfortable in his own skin.
- Control Issues – I should probably look in the mirror on this one but I won’t. I know that I wouldn’t be compatible with a man who has control issues.
- Vulnerability – Communication is key here, we all feel vulnerable sometimes and it is essential to communicate those feelings with your partner.
Here is an interesting blog about compersion in the context of poly-amorous couples. While I think that the word jealousy should be replaced with envy in the chart below, it does a good job of illustrating these feelings.
I’ll save you the effort of googling Schadenfreude. Schadenfreude is the experience of pleasure, joy, or self-satisfaction that comes from learning of or witnessing the troubles, failures, or humiliation of another.
Kevin and I have been talking about the infrequency of his orgasms and noted that he has been taking physical pleasure and sexual satisfaction from my orgasms when he watches me. We started researching this a bit and found this term so I figured that I would share it with all of you.
Thanks for reading!