The Feelings of Falling in Love
What is Love? Is it attraction? Is it intimacy? Is it attachment? Love, in fact, is all of these things combined together. "Love is spiritual, not physical. It is a union of souls and hearts and minds, not something you can't put under your microscope and understand!" Love is an emotion combined with a series of feelings.
These feelings can be immensely powerful and wonderful. Romantic love is defined to be an intense emotional state that one person experiences in relation to another. These types of feelings appear to be among the most intense that most of us are capable of, and at least in some cases, grow rather than diminish with time. Falling in love can be one of the most unexplainable feelings a person can endure.
There are two sets of feelings that are the basis of modern romantic relationships. The first is attraction. Attraction is the excitement you feel when falling in love. To better explain this feeling, attraction is what you feel when you have met someone new who really excites you and you begin to feel aroused when thinking about this person. Although this sounds very sexual, this feeling is just the first of what will most likely become a sexual passion. When in this first state of attraction, your body feels different - more bouncy, more energetic, and in need of less food and sleep. When in this state of attraction, one feels very happy and different every time that they are with this person. Frequently the presence (or sometimes merely thought) of the loved one can evoke specific physiological reactions. These physiological reactions include: erections for the male, wetness for the female, a lump in the throat, sweaty palms, weak knees, cold feet, a pounding heart. dizziness, and butterflies in the stomach. These physiological reations are completely normal when falling in love.
The second type of feeling that one endures when falling in love is attachment. Attachment is a bond or a special tie between people that are attracted to one another. Attachment helps keep people together and has more to do with feelings of security than of excitement. Romantic love requires attraction plus attachment. Someone can be very strongly attracted to another person but never become attached. Without some feeling of attachment, attraction is nonspecific. Once you have begun to fall in love with someone, this process becomes more and more important and you begin to feel more attached to this person. When in this state of attachment, each person would feel as if they are one person combined together. A special bond is shared and a sense of comfort and togetherness is felt in most any situation. This attachment is very normal in close relationships and healthy to a certain extent. Many times one person becomes more dependent
on the other and this can be very unhealthy
because everyone needs their own sense of identity. Without your own sense of identity, you might feel smothered or unable to funcion without your mate. Either way it is a lose-lose situation. For a healthy relationship, one needs to be able to function without total dependence on their mate.
There are three main aspects of love. According to the triangular theory of love, these three components include intimacy, passion, and decision/commitment. Intimacy is the feeling of being connected and close to another person. It is getting to know the person beyond the friendship level and understanding them on a romantic level. An example of this might be going to dinner or the movies with a prospective mate, rather than the casual encounters that someone might have with them in everyday interaction. Intimacy does not only pertain to specific acts, but also in verbal and non-verbal expressions of love. Although verbal expressions of intimate feelings through self-disclosure is important to relationship quality, the nonverbal expression appears to be more important. In general people...
Bibliography: COMMUNICATION 325
NOVEMBER 19, 1996
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