Science can do a lot of things; it can put a man on the moon, fight disease and make Lady Gaga a good singer. But can science explain love? According to the textbook I’m reading; yes.
Love has become a buzz word; a word that means everything and nothing. It’s the heavyweight champion of words in one breath when you whisper it to your significant other, then when you visit your aunt’s house it’s a word spelled out in block letters on a picture frame from Wal-Mart. You go to Starbucks; it’s on a transparent window sticker on the door. Other words that mean nothing out of context are beside it: “dream” “believe” “inspire” “hope” “breathe”.
At first I though, “let me get this straight: someone used a bunsen burner, graphing calculator and litmus paper to come up with a solid chemical breakdown of why I love my parents or girlfriend? That’s Crazy! How could anybody, especially someone I’ve never met, define something as individual as a fingerprint; mystical as Santa Claus and powerful as the untamed human spirit? #forgetaboutit. Then I read this strikingly succinct definition:
“Passion and commitment combined with intimacy form a triangle that represents the different facets of what researchers define as love.” (Wood & Schweitzer, 2010 p.316) I can honestly tell you, that was the heaviest thing I’ve read in a long time.
-Passion is having very powerful and positive feelings and desires for another person.
-Commitment is an intention to stick with a relationship.
-Intimacy is achieved when one says or does things to build trust and support with another.
It makes a lot of sense. It almost makes too much sense; so in a way I feel like the curtain has just been pulled back. The good news is, knowing what I know now about love, I feel like I’m more in control of it, and how I experience it.