Love Sense | Sue Johnson

Summary of: Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships
By: Sue Johnson

Introduction

Welcome to the fascinating world of ‘Love Sense: The Revolutionary New Science of Romantic Relationships’ by Sue Johnson. This book dives deep into the complexities of love, its importance in our lives, and the science behind it. Through exploring four types of love, the significance of emotional bonds, the effects of oxytocin, and the stages of long-term relationships, you’ll gain a better understanding of how love plays a pivotal role in our lives, both emotionally and biologically. Get ready to revolutionize your perspective on love and learn how to maintain strong, loving relationships in today’s world.

The Mystery of Love

Love is an elusive concept that has baffled humans throughout the ages. From the Greeks to Shakespeare and beyond, countless attempts have been made to define it. However, love remains an essential part of human experience that is crucial to our emotional fulfilment. In the past, marriage was largely an economic venture, but now love is the primary reason people choose to partner up. As we explore how love works, we may finally unlock the beautiful riddle that captivates us all.

The Changing Nature of Relationships

Charles Darwin’s view of relationships was less about love and more about finding a lifelong mate. Today, emotional connection is the primary reason people get together, and romantic relationships are the primary ones in their lives. This is due to increased social isolation, with people living away from their communities and communicating mostly through technology. As a result, our partners have to fill multiple roles, from lover to best friend, and even family.

The Science Behind Human Monogamy

Despite naturalists and some relationship experts arguing against human monogamy, science provides evidence that humans are naturally wired to mate for life. Oxytocin, the hormone produced during moments of emotional bonding, is a major reason why humans maintain exclusive partnerships. Prairie voles, who have oxytocin receptors in their brain, mate for life, while montane voles, who do not have these receptors, mate and abandon their pups. Humans can create long-lasting relationships with a significant other as nature has biologically prepared us to do so.

The Benefits of Emotional Dependency

In our society, being emotionally independent is viewed as a sign of adulthood, and being dependent is seen as weak. However, studies show that having a strong emotional bond with our partners improves our well-being and confidence. Emotional support has been proven to lower blood pressure, strengthen the immune system and make us more resilient to trauma. On the other hand, being alone can lead to detrimental effects on our mental and physical health. The fear of being tied down can make us view love as limiting, but having a secure bond is the perfect foundation for exploring the unknown. Therefore, it’s time to embrace emotional dependency and reap the benefits.

The Power of Emotional Attachment

Relationships thrive on emotional attachment, and when partners no longer see each other as their ‘safe haven,’ they become strained. According to John Bowlby’s attachment theory, our adult love relationships are shaped by the childlike need we have to attach ourselves to our parents. When transferred to our lover, this need for emotional bonding becomes our foundation for safe haven. Relationship distress arises when our emotional connection with our significant other is fading. The author suggests that creating a more emotionally open and empathetic way of interacting with each other can help restore emotional safe haven in relationships.

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