If your love affair feels like an addiction research studies are now in that will validate your obsession!
This guy, Art Aron and some other researchers over at Stony Brook University’s Department of Psychology did a study last year that used real time MRI brain images of people in the initial throes of passion to determine that love originates far from the brain’s logic center, emotional nexus and centers of desire. It comes from the same place as drug addiction!
Pia Mellody knew about this in 2003, when she wrote a book called “Facing Love Addiction”, and I blogged about it back in November seems actual science has now confirmed what we all kind of knew in our guts!
Aron says, “There’s this general craving-and-desire system that’s engaged, only in this case the desire isn’t for money or a drug or power or freedom. The desire is for merging with another person.” . . . Furthermore, the neural systems engaged by sex and love are really quite distinct.” This is really the first unambiguous evidence that they really are separate systems.” This explains why people fall in love with people they aren’t even sexually attracted to; or why others can feel equally strong, sudden emotion for a newborn child or even God.”
So according to Aron, my X was right when he said love and sex are 2 different things! We argued about that a lot! I guess, according to science I was wrong! I hate being wrong!
Another researcher said, “we feel now that romantic love is a drive, not an emotion. It’s a basic mating drive. Emotion, it seems, doesn’t get involved until new love grows old. After eight months, researchers detected activity in the regions of the brain associated with emotion.”
These kind of studies, like the monkey studies throw the idea of actual romance right out the window. I guess the good news is that it makes the human experience universal and it explains why love can feel like addiction, but it still leaves me with unanswered questions.
Do some of us experience this feeling of addiction more than others? If not than Pia Mellody and others while correct in their beliefs, are really just treating totally normal behavior?
Should we really “treat” love like an addiction, or should we just recognize what the feelings are and use that information when entering a relationship to help us make “rational” love choices?
Or should we just wait 8 months and see what “actual” emotions grow?