Tenderness comes into being at the moment when life propels man to the threshold of adulthood, and he anxiously realizes all the advantages of childhood he had not appreciated as a child.
Tenderness is the fear instilled by adulthood.
Tenderness is the attempt to create a tiny artificial space in which it is mutually agreed that each will treat the other like a child.
Tenderness is also fear of the physical consequences of love; it is an attempt to take love out of the world of adults (where it is insidious, coercive, heavy with flesh and responsibility) and to consider a woman as a child.
-Milan Kundera (Life is Elsewhere)