love

Love, Actually: The science behind love, attraction, and intimacy

We love this blog post by Katherine Wu. It clearly outlines the neurobiology of love (in as much as we can understand it scientifically) with easy to understand graphics. Broadly we can understand lust, driven by testosterone, as the drive for sex. Attraction is based in the brain’s reward system, associated with the release of dopamine and norepinephrine that make us feel energetic and excited. When dopamine levels rise beyond a threshold it has the same addictive quality as cocaine, causing some to act recklessly (we can probably all identify at some level). Another pitfall of being in love is the deactivation of neural pathways that help us make judgments about others, hence “love is blind.” We fall in love blind, dumb, and addicted but hopefully emerge with a more stable attachment based relationship.

Katherine Wu

Love, Actually: The science behind love, attraction, and intimacy

Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find - and Keep - Love

This book came recommended by a couple of single non-psychologist friends who described it as “eye opening” and “a must read.” Attachment, our style of intimacy in romantic relationships, influences how we respond to our crushes, dates, and partners. Broadly attachment can be divided into categories of secure (comfortable with intimacy), anxious (preoccupied with relationships and worried about rejection), and avoidant (discomfort with intimacy and independent). ‘Attached’ helps you examine your own attachment style, recognize the attachment style of others, and improve communication in romantic relationships. This is an excellent primer to understanding attachment and offers useful strategies for self regulation when the attachment system is activated. However, we caution against thinking too simplistically about attachment. Our attachment style is fluid and can shift with time or changing contexts.

Amir Levine & Rachel S.F. Heller

Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find - and Keep - Love

Fall In Love With Anyone Do This

Is it possible to create the feeling of falling in love? Psychologist Arthur Aron thought so. He developed an experiment in which he had heterosexual strangers pair off and ask one another 36 questions and then stare into each other’s eyes for 4 minutes. Six months later, two pairs of those subjects got married and invited the lab to their weddings. Len Catron describes her own recreation of this experiment with an acquaintance of hers, with whom she was mildly romantically interested in. The questions are intended to really see person, both literally and metaphorically. The result? She fell in love of course!

 Mandy Len Catron

Fall In Love With Anyone Do This