Your Love Is My Drug

Your Love Is My Drug - Cheryl Woolstone Counselling Blog

Everyone remembers the high of falling in love.

Your body is flooded with nature’s feel good chemicals. You want this blissful state to last forever.

Neuroscientists have found that after a period of 6 months to 2 years the brain stops producing these stimulating chemicals.

Dr. Daniel Amen, author of The Brain in Love, discusses the major chemicals involved with the primary phases of love.

  • Attraction – the drive for sexual gratification is driven by testosterone and estrogen
  • Infatuation – intense passionate love is controlled by a cocktail of chemicals (dopamine, serotonin, PEA, nor-epinephrine)
  • Commitment – sense of connectedness, stability created by oxytocin and vasopressin
  • Detachment – losing a love through breakups or death leads to deficiencies in serotonin and endorphins

Fascinating to consider the forces of nature that drive our commitment behaviour. There really is more to love that what we see with the naked eye.

It isn’t necessary to understand the exact properties or structure of these chemicals. What is important to understand is that falling in love triggers a long, complex shift of the mind and body, resulting in temporary changes to your judgement and behaviour.

I Love Him, But I Am Not In Love With Him

In the beginning, while we are in a  chemically altered state of infatuation, we feel neither obligated nor burdened. We believe that we have found the one person with whom we will enjoy free flowing give and take and endless positive feelings.

The time limit on the chemical high runs out and fears of incompatibility take center stage and disenchantment sets in.

A  lot of unnecessary breakups can occur during this phase when people mistake the lack of intensity as a sign that they have fallen out of love. At this point the power struggle phase of the relationship has kicked in.

Couples who land up in a therapist’s office are usually smack in the middle of the power struggle with the cyclical fights and the mounting frustrations list.

So go slow at this point particularly if you believe that the relationship has integrity and caring. The power struggle is inevitable. Self-responsibility and curiousity about your partner will help you move through the  power struggle  to a deeper, more lasting form of partnership.

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This entry was posted on Monday, March 28th, 2011 at 8:00 AM and is filed under IMAGO and Relationships. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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