‘Here’s What You Don’t Do’ is a new podcast series that offers reflection on and discussion of real-life issues, including relationship issues, in a light-hearted but deeply-felt, informative way; available through iTunes, Google Play Music, Facebook, Stitcher and Podbean. (You’ll need to search the title, in bold above, at those last two links–clicking Facebook takes you directly to the page holding the newest installment.) New episodes post every Tuesday (except during hiatus).
I’ve had a pair of comments/ questions from the lovely Nina; I’ll put the bodies of both messages below, then my own commentary.
Hi! My first Saturn return is coming up at the end of this year. I have this feeling that someone who I had a brief, but intense karmic relationship with ten years ago will be a part of my life again during this time. Our past encounter ultimately ended badly and I don’t feel like I’ve ever really had closure, nor has my attraction to this person ceased, despite being in a six year relationship with a different person (which recently ended).
My question is not “is this person my soul mate” or “will I end up with this person?” (I read the guidelines for submitting questions!) What I’m wondering is, what is your take on this? My intuition is telling me that we will date during this time and that it would bring us each closure and immense healing. I have a bit of astrology knowledge and I think we have some aspects that support this. But, I haven’t been able to find anything online about the idea of love or relationships specifically during a Saturn return. I am so curious for the take of an objective, experienced astrologer on this!
And then this:
Hi, it’s Nina, I submitted a question a few days ago involving love/relationship during a Saturn return.
As I have been thinking my question over, wondering if you’ll find the topic interesting, wondering if I explained myself well enough, I realized that I may have glossed over a relevant piece of information in pursuit of being concise.
So, I explained how I had a tumultuous “relationship” (we were never officially dating, but fought intensely and hooked up) with person A. This took place during our freshman year of college, specifically October 2007 through April 2008. It ended when he simultaneously stopped talking to me and started dating a close friend of mine the day after we had sex for the first time.
Fast forward about four years and I start my first real relationship with person B, who had become my best friend after meeting at the same college freshman year. He is also a best friend of person A. This is the relationship I was in for nearly six years. Person B had been secretly harboring feelings for me since the first time we met. our relationship was healthy for about a year and then turned sour for the remainder. We’ve recently given ourselves space and there is a significant part of me that hopes he will be the person I end up with, once we have each had time to grow as individuals. (That is to say, I hold out hope that we may start a new relationship after our Saturn return.)
We also make music together as our profession, so we are still very much a part of each others’ life. (In fact, we still live together! But, we are going to change this this summer or fall.)
So, the question I asked you in the first place was what are your thoughts on a relationship during a Saturn return. I want to date person A during my Saturn return, and then start a new and hopefully permanent relationship with Person B. It occurred to me that this love triangle was almost certainly important context for my question.
(It maybe be relevant to mention that I have no intent to hurt Person B by dating Person A. It was a mutual decision for Person B and I to break up, but it was he who was not sure if he was attracted to/loved me anymore. I don’t know if Person B would necessarily know about my potential relationship with Person A. But, I wanted to make sure to explicitly state that this is not any sort of revenge or malicious intent. I never got over Person A and I feel overwhelming drawn to him. (And, yes–I noticed out Black Moon Lilith/Venus conjunction!))
You seem to be something of an expert in dissecting relationships via astrology. And, I think love triangles might be something of an intriguing topic to people? I do apologize for submitting my question in such a fragmented way.
Since material presented on this blog is centered in analysis that can be useful to others, I’ll be addressing your first issue concerning the implications of dating during the Saturn Return, as that’s a good subject that I’ve never seen addressed myself. Then I’ll talk briefly about the more personal issues for you.
The Saturn Return, for those who are not aware of this, occurs at roughly (dependent on the retro-direct cycle at the time of birth) 29.5 years, when the planet returns to its position at birth. Leading up to the first Return we have three bursts of major, hard contact between transiting and natal Saturn, a square at approximately 7 years old (considered ‘The Age of Reason’, when the individual first sees their responsibility for their own behavior and becomes aware of potential consequences), an opposition at 14 (another turning point, one where the first big steps away from childhood are taken), and at 21 (a complete coming-of-age that leaves the individual solely responsible for her or his own life and actions). Each of these hard contacts of transiting to natal Saturn typically brings more responsibility, and in a certain way, more freedom, as the individual is asked to take on more, to follow the rules, and thereby gain autonomy and reach a new stage of maturity.
But, by the time the Return arrives, we’ve been out in the world for awhile. We feel we’ve got something of a handle on things, that we understand how the world works, and that we’ve found at least some avenues of expression and ways of creating security. As Saturn nears its natal position, though, we begin to Self-assess, to consider what it is that we’ve actually built. This period of consideration occurs even in those who have non-material goals, or an outlook that isn’t trained on establishing authority, joining an established hierarchy, or meeting professional benchmarks. It’s about seeing how far you’ve come, and judging that progress by your own particular standards–and for some, especially those who see themselves as rootless, as craving the unconventional experience, it may be the revelation that they have goals at all, ones they’ve never admitted even to themselves.
If you’ve been telling yourself you want one thing out of life, but actually want another, you’ll realize it now. Stability may become more important to you, as may a sense of ‘moving up’ or ‘moving on’, especially if there are personal milestones you’ve always assumed you’d meet, such as getting married, having children, or attaining a particular professional status. We judge our own life accomplishments at the Return for what they may mean in a larger sense; what have we contributed to society, and what do we want to contribute in the future? What do we want our roles to be? How do we want to make our mark, be remembered, have an impact?
So, we can see that this is an appropriately Self-focused period, one where we are taking our own measure, assessing just how, where, and how well we fit into the social order–and that means that dating at this time won’t really be about the other person, but about fulfilling our own needs. That sounds harsh, and it’s not like we can’t fall in love at this time; it’s just that we are much more likely to spend our time seeking partners or others who will help us fulfill our own aims. The more conscious we are of those aims, of course, the more deliberate our decisions, and the more likely we are to fulfill our Saturnian needs for status, security, and order (and we all have these, know it or not).
Dating during this period can take on a certain quality of mission, of seriousness of purpose–and that almost always translates into establishing a more permanent situation either professionally or personally, through marriage or partnership of some kind, even if that commitment is to oneself, initiating a kind of marriage to an achievement or goal. Now, be aware, all this usually happens without excessive conscious intent; we don’t realize, necessarily, that we’re assessing our lives, judging our choices up to now (though we may become overwhelmingly aware of our own discontent), but we are, and that means that dating takes on an almost predatory tone: we are looking for a mate, or we are looking to meet certain life goals such as those involving reproduction and the parental experience–and if we’re not, we’re usually bent on throwing our energy into some other area of accomplishment–and so not dating at all.
I hope that sets the Saturn Return stage for dating–it’s not to be taken lightly, in fact, you can’t take it lightly, even when you believe you can, as there’s a part of you that will persistently wonder where it’s all leading. So now, Nina, you must be wondering what I’ll say about your situation?
Dear Nina, You may be very disappointed with what I have to say here, and I apologize for that. I want to offer you the same feedback I would offer any client who provided me with the details you’ve supplied–and please forgive me if I’ve misunderstood what you’ve conveyed, but you are speaking as if you have the ultimate say in having a relationship with either of these men–but you yourself say that each has broken things off, implying the break wasn’t in your hands.
I also want to ask you this: if you were Person B, how would you feel if your prospective partner wanted to date someone else (your best friend!) but then had plans to ‘settle down’ with you after? I know you have no intention of hurting either man–that’s absolutely not in question–but I do think you’re feeling a kind of Saturn pressure, and that it may be overpowering your respect for the feelings of these men, both of whom have created distance that they may or may not want to continue.
So I would counsel that you get clear both on what you actually want, and how much of creating that is actually within your power (sometimes, all you can do is know what you want, and offer yourself). As I’m sure you’re aware, your Saturn Return hasn’t actually kicked in yet–doesn’t even begin to enter orb until this November–so you may be anticipating something before you really know how it feels or will manifest. Your current focus on Saturn, though, may be a manifestation of your Solar Arc Sun within orb of conjoining your natal Saturn–in essence creating all the same considerations that the Saturn Return brings. Add to that the SA Sun is also conjoined natal Uranus, ruler of the Whole Sign 12th, and you may find the unconscious is at the steering wheel, no matter how much you try to be conscious of your choices. The effect may be you are driven, in any number of ways (some of which you will feel are Karmic or fated–such is the influence of the 12th), with the actual results only visible roughly two years down the road. With so much on your own plate, the astrology of interaction with either of these men is a moot point, at least until you sort out your own wants and intentions definitively, and taking into account the wants and wishes of these men, as well. And though you didn’t ask, with transiting Saturn in your 10th, it’s no wonder you’re focused on your status–but rather than in relationship, the place to put your effort might be the career, as this could be a high point period, if approached with maximum dedication.
Wishing you all the best,
Here’s a site you might find very useful: Relationship Knowledge
A re-print from years ago, but the situation is timeless.
What is going on: Bad Karma, something in the stars, or just plain bad luck???
I have been divorced for a little over eight years, but it has only been in the last two years that I have had the urge to get back into a relationship. Between being extremely hurt by the betrayal that led to the divorce, going back to school, getting into a second career and raising my son, I felt that I was stretched a little thin to have time to devote to a significant other. I also did not trust myself – afraid I would attract someone like my ex.
It was at my new job that I meet Mr.L, who knocked my socks off. He approached me first, and initiated conversations, and was quite complimentary. I was flattered by the attention. For the first time in years, I felt like actually going out with a man. I was physically attracted to him and we had some fun times bantering back and forth. Co-workers even commented to me on the apparent chemistry. Mr. L asked me out a total of three times (he initiated it each time) and he bailed each time – sick, sick and had to work late due to an emergency. There would be long stretches in between in which we would not see each other due to extensive travel for the job. In the end, I just figured he was not that into me and stopped any kind of flirtation. Shortly afterward he was transferred to another work location. Several months later he emailed me and told me about his new Harley and asked if I would be interested in a ride some weekend. I was casual and said sure, just call when free. Like the past situations, there was never any follow through. What makes a guy does that? I wonder if it is his Venus in Leo?
My next foray into the dating world was on a popular on line dating site. I initiated contact with Mr. B and through a series of emails, we had some interesting and fun conversations- he really made me laugh. We agreed to meet for lunch on a workday, he did not show up, and said that he had his days mixed up. (He appeared to be a absent minded professor – literally – PhD in engineering). Apologized profusely, wanted to make it up and then nothing, no further communication. Three months later, he initiates contact with me again – asks to be forgiven, was so embarrassed by what had happened, not use to dating, etc. He wants to try again. We emailed back and forth for another 2 weeks. He seems genuine so I agreed to try again. Early in the week we decide to meet the following Saturday and firm up time and place by Friday. I never hear from him again!!
Between these two instances, my self esteem has plummeted. I am so discouraged because it is rare that I feel connected enough to even want to go out with someone! Is there an astrological explanation for the run of bad luck, and why I am attracted to men that do not follow through??
Any insight is greatly appreciated!
Your recent reluctance to get back into the dating game when you already have a full plate of career and child raising is certainly understandable (and the relationship appetite suppressant known as ‘divorce’ probably hasn’t helped, either); but then to have such discouraging experiences once you do venture back in must be very disappointing. And meeting new people can be both difficult (where do you go?) and exhausting (sorting through the frogs to find even a potential prince!)
Is it the karma fairy, tapping you with her wand of invisibility and/ or payback, real or imagined? No, I think not, but what we do have to look at isn’t the men, it’s the one constant in the equation: you. There are some hints in the natal chart that say you may expect relationships not to go well: Venus is quincunx Pluto (love and relationships require constant adjustment that can be destructive–and that love itself can be wearing and destructive); Sun conjunct Chiron (a wounded Soul); Venus squares Neptune (idealizing love leads to real-life disillusion, or an inability to pinpoint what love is or, more importantly, what it feels like when it’s given). These aren’t set in stone, and of course can carry other meanings, but taken as a whole may suggest that love is an area that is not clear or easy for you.
Transits during the time you specified paint a picture of some ‘heavy’ energies being dealt with in a very public way: Pluto through the 7th, completely scouring and destroying previous notions of what it takes to partner; Jupiter through the 7th, exaggerating all mate or partnership activities (and the hurt and problems involved, as well); Uranus through the 10th, giving the reputation and public image a radical, erratic, or unstable aura (that doesn’t necessarily reflect reality, but it’s what others see); and Neptune from 9th to 10th, obscuring you, perhaps quite literally! from the sight of others. These major transits alone would explain the way others see you, acknowledge you, are attracted by what they imagine they see (Neptune’s influence) and then . . . you slip from their attention, and they abandon their intent. And I’m just supposing, here, but the pattern of men engaging, reassuring you of their interest, and then not following through may hint that what you are conveying to them may more openly show your (quite justified) hurt, need, and desire for rescue, in some sense, than you are aware of, and for many this isn’t an aphrodisiac.
This entire dynamic is likely a mechanism the Universe is using to allow you to rest, recover, and re-discover who you are on your own, without a partner. Ruler of 11th House goals and wishes, Mars, is currently being transited by Pluto, re-working and re-vivifying what you want (and helping you re-discover what you can offer). Neptune has, through the dating periods mentioned, been in the vicinity of your natal Sun/ Chiron conjunction, making it both difficult to see in exactly what way you may at present be injured (which can show very plainly to those with whom we interact), and giving you a chance to heal and create yourself along the lines of your ideal Self–a great opportunity, that many people never get.
You have some wonderful life potentials in your Grand Trine of Sun/ Chiron trine Juno trine the Moon, and in your Grand Trine involving Vesta, Earth, and Saturn; the former says you are a vessel for development of a unique role or skill that brings the Soul Purpose and emotional state to a peak of maturity and refinement, and the latter shows the ability to honor what’s sacred about the world that surrounds us. Sun/ Chiron quincunx Ceres also suggests enormous possibilities centered in your understanding of and gifts keyed to the natural world, nurturing, and/ or your unique identity.
My thought is, give the attention and energy you would invest in a relationship to yourself, for right now, and with time, as your idea of who you are and what you want post-divorce becomes clearer, I think companions will start to come out of the woodwork. Someone like you, once she’s sure of herself and is ready to love in the best way, will attract attract attract–but you have to stop pouring the energy out, and start letting the love that’s all around you in, before you’ll reach that correct, attractive balance.
A useful re-print, just in time for Venus retrograde:
Dating During Venus Retrograde
This new blog is a great idea – inspiring and informational!
My question has to do with Venus Retrograde:
Living with mourning since the passing of a sweet soul last spring, it actually seemed like something in me began to move and open around the eclipses, suddenly the thought of looking for love again entered my mind. I have already gotten very useful information from your Venus Retrograde & Eclipse Reports, but one thing keeps puzzling me: What about dating during Venus Retrograde? This deep opening to all things Venusian (Venus crossing the IC) makes me want to open to possibilities, but the more I read about this goddess in backwards mode (books and internet), the more I doubt my own impulses to open to love & the world again at this time. Is this ’just Spring Fever’ or me going backwards at life & love?
I look forward to your insights on this, as I hope you will consider my question – I don’t think I’m the only one wondering…;-)
All the best,
Hi Ms P,
Thank you! And you ask an excellent question! I’m sure you’re right, many would like to know the prospects for romance and relationship specific to Venus retro. When considering the dating picture, I think there may be two things to evaluate: one, where were you, dating and romance-wise, eight years ago when Venus retrograded in the same spot in your natal chart? It’s an important question, as you’ll meet the same issues in a new form. If relationships weren’t on the agenda eight years ago, chances are they won’t be again at this time, either, which suggests that other Venusian topics (finances and earnings, the values picture, feelings/ intuition/ sensitivity, talents, reward) will be. In that case, you just won’t be paying attention to relationships and dating for the retro period.
But, if relationships were the focus eight years ago, then they very likely will be again. Preparation for the retrograde involves an honest inspection of the concerns apparent eight years ago, and how the circumstances, situations, standards, and desires have evolved from that point to now. If you dealt with an unfaithful paramour at this time eight years ago, for example, your experience this time around may echo that one, with betrayal once again on the menu, or the period may bring the revelation that you have now established an intimate relationship that supports you–and you’ll be able to put the issue of unfaithfulness (and all the Self-doubt and questioning it brings forward) to rest.
The second consideration is, how well do you know what you want in life? Yes, you can get back to dating and relationships during the retro, if you’ve been away from them; but with the aesthetic, personal values, and taste changes that come during the retro (and flee afterward) we can find ourselves embroiled in something we don’t really want, that isn’t true to our innate nature, once Venus goes direct, so caution in terms of commitment and irrevocable (or difficult to correct) acts (sex and what this can expose us to, impulsive marriage, buying a condo together) is in order.
You make a good point, Ms P, when you speak of the “deep opening” to Venus energies that can be experienced at this time; and certainly, a profound opening to love is possible. With close attention to your inherent Venus nature, and flexibility in terms of entanglements and commitments, there’s no reason why the retrograde period can’t be a wonderful re-introduction to the pleasures and rituals of dating, as well as a return of romance to the life.
You might also like to read this http://juliedemboski.com/2008/04/02/is-your-mate-your-fate/
I am a 25 year-old male and I’ve been with my girlfriend for about a month. She asked me to be official on our second date and I said yes. She shows me lots of attention and meets me often but she loves talking to new people. She is always chatting with the pizza clerk or server, whether it’s a guy or girl. If it’s a guy she’s still smiling at him and talking to him in front of me. One time she gave the IHOP server a big tip and joked with him. She tells me we are allowed to have friends of the opposite sex. I told her that is fine as long as we had those friends already and we are platonic with them. She agreed but then she goes around talking to other guys.
She mentioned how when she goes by her friend Jenny’s house, her friend’s brother walks around in a tight speedo. She said he is a security guard. She was laughing and smiling.
We went to a gas station and the attendant was talking to both of us. I wasn’t getting a good vibe but my girlfriend loved to chat with him and kept smiling and talking to him. Then he told us “just drinks? buy more stuff! give me some business!” I just stood there but my girlfriend kept looking for other stuff. He said “take anything you want, honey” and she kept looking. She said, “you don’t have the gum I like”. I finally told the guy I was her boyfriend and she was with me. Later on I brought it up and she said I overreacted, that he was very nice, very friendly. She said he wasn’t flirting with her at all and she didn’t think anything of it. She said she doesn’t get flirted with often (and she sounded disappointed saying it).
She is so opposed to open relationships yet it seems like that is what she wants. Am I wrong to be jealous? Can you please explain her behavior?
Thanks in advance.
First, I want to commend you on the exceptionally mature approach you’re taking to the significance of your girlfriend’s behavior; not many guys, especially young guys, would lay out the situation in such an unbiased and thoughtful way.
I think the best way to address your question is to simply make a series of statements, my conclusions based on what you say. I’m immediately struck by how quickly your girlfriend wanted to be exclusive; sometimes this is a not-so-positive thing, as moving too fast can indicate someone who wants to pin you down, treating you more as a possession than an individual. But, you could just be a super-charming guy 🙂
Your assumption that people may only retain opposite sex friends that they knew before the relationship, however, is an unreasonable one. I’m sure that part of what attracted you to your girlfriend is her outgoing and open personality, and I understand that you may naturally worry that others will find this attractive, too–but to ask her to stop being who she is is to ask her to be other than the person you fell for–and that’s not right.
Now, to be fair, part of what she may like about you is the sense that all this bothers you; why else tell you about the friend’s brother and the tight Speedo? This suggests that there may be an element of sexual teasing in her nature that does not belong in a relationship; manipulating the feelings of one’s partner is not a kind or loving thing to do–that implies immaturity in the way she regards others, again treating you more like a plaything (to get a reaction from) than a person about whom she truly cares.
You seem like you are ready for a more committed relationship than this girl is capable of offering; you come across as a man who is looking to do the right thing by the person you’re involved with. And maybe that’s it: she sounds like a girl, playing with others’ emotions and creating sexual tension for a power-thrill, and what you need is a woman, who is ready to respect and care for you, a facet of which would be her willingness (within reason) to refrain from engaging in behavior that makes you uncomfortable.
There’s nothing wrong with enjoying this relationship while it lasts, but I would not take it seriously; I would not let her see that any of her behavior bothers you, and I’m betting that, sooner rather than later, she will behave in such a way (outrageous flirting, letting you catch her with someone else, deliberately baiting you) that makes it obvious that what she wants from you is a jealous reaction, not a real relationship. At that point I hope you’ll see that she’s just too immature for you, and that you’ll move on to someone who treats you with more kindness. The world’s a big place with a lot going on in it; you’ll soon see that putting your energy into this type of interaction is a waste of your time.
Much good luck, J–