Running head: ROY G BIV OF LOVE
The ROY G BIV of Love
Lee conceptualized love styles onto a color wheel of love, using the primary styles, or colors for that matter, of Eros- red, Storge- blue, and Ludus- yellow. Just as the primary colors can be blended to create a multitude of different hues, Lee (1973) theorized that the elements of the three primary styles of love could combine to create a vast number of love styles (Guerrero at al.). Of all the possibilities within the love rainbow that these three primary styles could combine to create, Lee suggested the three most common secondary styles include: Mania- orange, Agape- purple, and Pragma- green. Lee’s love styles are not only set up to form onto a color wheel, but also represent the symbolism of each color they are paired with. Just like red, blue and yellow can create the broad spectrum of the rainbow; Eros, Storge, and Ludus can create the broad spectrum of loving. So where do you fit on this great spectrum of love? Are you the same color as your partner? Do you need to be in order to find happiness? Professionals in communication and social/personal relationships have provided extensive research to help you find the answers you are looking for about love. Before we can understand and break down the secondary styles of loving, we must first be aware of the primary styles of love. First we will start off with Eros or, as symbolized, the color red. The color red is symbolized by: love and passion, strong emotions and desire, energy and excitement, and all things intense (Bear). Red is Cupid, red is hot, red is the color of Eros. Eros is described as physical love; the intense, passionate, love at first sight, can’t keep your hands off of each other type of loving. It is the initial “hot” attraction that is the basis for erotic lovers, characterized by intense emotional highs and lows, substantial arousal, and desire for physical contact (Guerrero at al.). Lee (1973) theorized that erotic lovers are “intense communicators”, who show high levels of self-disclosure and are able to elicit similarly high levels of self-disclosure from their partners (Guerrero at al.), which is a vital trait to embrace while starting off a romantic relationship. This style is mostly evident in the early stages of relationships, which can be stereotyped as the “honeymoon stage”. Positively, Lee (1973) came to conclusion that this type of love often leads to a more friendship-based and secure style of love (Guerrero at al.). Keep in mind, a certain level of Eros is an important aspect to maintain throughout any romantic relationship; it is what keeps the fire and the spark alive! If you are in an Erotic love relationship, full of excitement and passion, enjoy it while it is there, because unfortunately the downsides may soon reveal themselves. As good as Eros may seem on paper, too much Eros can have negative effects. Dating an erotic lover could turnout to become a great challenge if you do not match your partner’s erotic love style. For instance, your partner may only be interested in you due to your ravishing good looks, which may result in the attraction deteriorating rather quickly. Also, it is difficult for erotic lovers to adjust after the initial “hot” attraction begins to cool off (Guerrero at al.), which may result in your partner moving on to find his/her next infatuation. Erotic love is not always classified as a negative style of love, in fact, some ‘lottery-winning’ couples are able to remain in this blissful “honeymoon stage” of erotic love throughout their entire life-long relationship, but they do not achieve this by relying on simply Eros alone. Which brings us to our next color, blue. The color Blue represents stability, security, loyalty, unity, and trust, all of which are principals of Storgic love. Similar to Storgic lovers, blue is seen as trustworthy, dependable, committed and perceived as a constant in our lives (Bear). Unlike Erotic lovers, Storge, or...
References: Barelds, D.P.H.& Barelds-Dijkstra, P., (2007). Love at First Sight or Friends First?. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 24, 480-493.
Bear, J.H. (n.d.) Symbolism of color and colors that go together. Color Meanings. October 5, 2010.http://desktoppub.about.com/cs/color/a/symbolism.htm
Davis, K.E.& Latty-Mann, H., (1987). Love Styles and Relationship Quality. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 4, 409-447.
Guerrero, L.K., Anderson, P.A., & Walid, A.A. (2007). Close encounters: communication in relationships (pp.118-123). Thousand Oaks CA: Sage Publications, Inc.
Hendrick, S.S.& Hendrick, C., (1993). Lovers as Friends. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 10, 459-464.
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