What sense does modesty have when you know your partner so well, sometimes for years, even decades? Modesty is not where you expect it to be. You can be modest about your own feelings and not about the physical dimension. Some people have no problem walking around naked in front of their spouse and are very embarrassed when it comes to unbuttoning psychically!
Modesty is primarily that of the body. But what does it mean to accept to expose your body to the gaze of others? This means that we are confident, for example vis-à-vis the imperfections that it can reveal. To undress is to allow a look that one wants benevolent, believing that this nudity will be accepted, and not only in the moments of desire. To undress is to admit that certain attractive, even exciting, aspects in more sensual moments take on a different allure in everyday life, aesthetic perhaps, but also distanced, a body “like any other” which opens up to the gaze. . The modesty of married life is due to this gap between the intensity of an attraction, at particular times, and the banality of everyday life which makes modesty possible.
Wish to prepare for each other
Indeed, we do not have to say everything or show everything. Do you want to show yourself to your spouse when you have just woken up, caught in the mists of a dream, worried about a neglected aspect or even bad breath? Modesty is not only that of sex. It is linked to the wish to prepare for the other, to be presentable or to want to present oneself. Not to be for his own benefit. But because we choose what we reveal. What the spouse can see and what is shareable.
Modesty is then also that of the mind. What do we keep secret from the other, the one we know so well? It happens that a spouse is jealous of what is related to a psychoanalyst. The husband or the wife cannot understand that it is told in session what would never be mentioned in conjugal intimacy. Is it duplicity or just modesty? Not to say everything, not to expose everything, is not to hide at all costs what is not glorious. It is also about preparing.
Sadness and joy are to be shared but they do not necessarily have to be delivered in their power. Filters are needed, which make it possible to show what is not blind and which help to understand (a little) what is so unique for everyone. It is the same question for the naked body. Our body, that of desire but also that of suffering, does not have to be received as such. You have to prepare it. It’s not easy to show yourself wanting in front of the one you love, and that in good timing. But on the other hand, it’s not easier to let yourself be watched in a situation of vulnerability or illness, and to determine the moment or the one you love is ready for it. Modesty is that: recognizing the strength of the body and of feelings. And prepare them for the meeting …