Yearning is more than wanting, it’s the step beyond, when we feel we just have to have something, we’ll have a hard time surviving if we don’t have it as soon as possible. We all yearn for different things, but we all yearn. Wanting the basics in life is not really yearning, and many of these we don’t ache for. Most of us don’t yearn for mac and cheese for dinner, but we might yearn for our favorite dessert. When yearning takes the next step, to need, you crave the mac and cheese and the almost pleasurable yearning is now absent. There is a time to wear our yearnings on our faces and hear it in our words, there is also a time to keep our yearnings private. Public yearnings can be the subjects of music, song, poetry, and prose; putting the yearning to music or into words is cathartic and can help ease some of the pain of the situation. Some of the art produced to help lessen yearnings is most amazing and beautiful and the world would be a worse place without it. Yearnings made public that embarrass or offend the yearnee or others by their inappropriate disclosures or explicit content don’t seem to me to be real yearnings. If the yearner really cared for the person or thing they longed for they would be incapable of such inappropriate and unwelcome outpourings. Unreachable yearnings can bring satisfaction or unparalleled sorrow and tension. For those whose self-esteem is low in the first place, forming yearnings they know they can never satisfy is almost satisfying in itself; they can be self-fulfilling prophecies and the yearners can bask in the sympathy of others. For those who love a challenge or are goal-oriented yearnings can be satisfying just because they may seem unattainable at first, but the trying is worth all the effort. The fact that people do yearn, and take pleasure in yearning, tells us that on some level people take pleasure in being hurt or in pain, at least mentally. This kind of mental pain can be alleviated relatively easily so that suffering is minimized or non-existent. But why in the world do we invite and accept pain at all?