Imprinting (Jean-Jacques Goldman)

This bilingual article deals with one of the most dramatic issues in life: the great forbidden love and the imprinting phenomenon.

Below are the video and the lyrics of Tournent Les Violons by Jean-Jacques Goldman, probably one of the best songs highlighting this tricky situation. And here is an English translation –

In short, the young girl falls in love for the first time, at an early age, with someone who is either inaccessible for various reasons, or doesn’t love her in return. Normally, in well-balanced individuals, the situation is resolved by grief and then acceptance. But in this particular case, the feeling is extremely strong and it can’t be dealt with. The girl gets fixated, imprinted, by that significant other. Physicality (sexuality) is not obligatory, as the process is primarily emotional. Symbolically, the girl sees the significant other as “her true and only love”. I don’t have a problem with “true” but I have one with “only”. Because from that moment the girl becomes unavailable for any other possible lover, except for “the one”. Nothing can change that. I personally never saw someone cured of this. Interestingly, I never saw this in men; only in women…

My life was heavily marked by imprinting. My grandma stayed married 56 years with my grandpa, dreaming about her “true love”. Now, in her 80s, her biggest regret remains that impossible love. Just imagine what my grandpa felt living 56 years with a woman he loved but never truly loved him back… Following this family model, I encountered friends and lovers who had someone else as their “true love”. I broke up with them every time, out of an unconscious fear of not repeating the story of my grandpa. Then, following my psy training, the fear has become conscious. I even tried in vain to “cure” several friends and girlfriends, and I lamentably failed (Pygmalion complex). I remain very sensitive to this imprinting issue when I see it in my patients – and I see it a lot – because I know there is nothing I can do about it.

Grande fête au château il y a bien longtemps
Les belles et les beaux, nobliaux, noble sang
De tout le royaume on est venu dansant

Grande fête aux rameaux et Manon a seize ans
Servante en ce château comme sa mère avant
Elle porte les plateaux lourds à ses mains d’enfant

Le bel uniforme, oh le beau lieutenant
Différent des hommes d’ici blond et grand
Le sourire éclatant d’un prince charmant

Redoublent la fête et les rires et les danses
Manon s’émerveille en remplissant les panses
Le bruit, les lumières, c’est lui qui s’avance

En prenant son verre auprès d’elle il se penche
Lui glisse à l’oreille en lui frôlant la hanche
“Tu es bien jolie” dans un divin sourire

Passent les années dures et grises à servir
Une vie de peine et si peu de plaisir
Mais ce trouble là brûle en ses souvenirs

Elle y pense encore et encore et toujours
Les violons, le décor, et ses mots de velours
Son parfum, ses dents blanches, les moindres détails

En prenant son verre auprès d’elle il se penche
Lui glisse à l’oreille en lui frôlant la hanche
Juste quatre mots, le trouble d’une vie
Juste quatre mots qu’aussitôt il oublie

Tournent les vies oh tournent et s’en vont
Tournent les violons

Elle y pense encore et encore et toujours.

4 thoughts on “Imprinting (Jean-Jacques Goldman)

  1. Silvia Onu

    Tulburator,excelent,…cum poti simti,exprima ….” nuante” de sensibilitate,de stari??de ce nu te vede cineva?e nedrept ca atata frumusete exista numai in tine…

    Liked by 1 person

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