Attachment Style and Relationships
The three dimensions of love are intimacy, passion, and commitment. Passion is when
a person or individuals feel strong emotions, excitement, and physiological arousal.
Commitment is a conscious decision to stay in a relationship. This includes a sense of devotion
to the individual who they are with or the relationship. Intimacy is a mutual understanding with
warm affection, and mutual concern for each others welfare. Sternberg theory is there are certain
types of love when one or more of these dimensions of love are interrelated. There are five
interrelated loves, and they are romantic, compassionate, fatuous and infatuated, empty, and
consummate love. Compassionate love is a mixture of intimacy and commitment. This is a slow
developing love built on high intimacy and strong commitment. Fatuous loves is a combination
of passion and commitment often describing people in a whirlwind passionate romance, but
barely know each other and it is unlikely to last. Romantic love is a mixture of intimacy and
passion. This love may not always include commitment, for example spring break or summer
love. Infatuated love is mostly the same as fatuous, but may be described as people in awe,
adoration, and sex related feelings. Empty love is relationships built on commitment only.
People often describe this as a “dead” relationship and both parties often find a reason to stay
together. For example some will stay together just for the financial reason and not love.
Consummate is the complete form of love, representing the ideal relationship toward which
many people strive but which apparently few achieve. Sternberg cautions that maintaining a
consummate love may be even harder than achieving it. "Without expression," he warns,
"even the greatest of loves can die" (1987, p.341). . Sternberg cautions that maintaining a
consummate love may be even harder than achieving it. The variety of love is captured in
Sternberg’s theory of love’s essential ingredients. He explains in depth what love is and how
emotions and feelings are a part of his triangular theory of love. However time alone Page 4
does not cause intimacy, passion, and commitment to occur and grow. Knowing
about these components of love may help couples avoid pitfalls in their relationship.
Sternberg, R. J. (1986) A triangular theory of love. Psychological Review, 93, 119-135.
Sternberg, R. J. (1988) The Triangle of Love: Intimacy, Passion, Commitment,
Basic Books (ISBN 0465087469)...la:triangulus amoris
I believe attachment style first starts as an infant and how you develop a relationship with
your primary caregiver. This establishes how you will develop relationships in the future with
others, such as friends and spouses. When there is a secure attachment pattern, a person is
confident and self-possessed and is able to easily interact with others, meeting both their own
and another’s needs. Though many who do not have a secure attachment pattern will most likely
find a spouse who does not make him or her happy. For example a person with an anxious or
preoccupied attachment feels that, in order to be close to another and have their needs met, they
need to be with your friend or spouse all the time. The person with this perception of reality,
they will choose someone who is hard to connect with or who is isolated. A secure attachment
adults tend to be more satisfied in their relationships. Children with this attachment view their
caregiver as a secure base, from which they can venture out and independently find themselves
and the world. This allows them as adults in relationships to be secure and connected,...
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