What Is True Love?
Poets and authors have tried to define love for centuries, whereas scientists have only recently started. Many of us know intuitively that love is a major purpose for living; that connection is inherent in all that we do, and without love, we cannot survive as a species.
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So then, what exactly is love?
Caring: The ancient Greeks had many different names for different forms of love: passion, virtuous, affection for the family, desire, and general affection. But no matter how love is defined, they all hold a common trait: caring.
Attractive: Attraction and chemistry form the bond that allows people to mate. Without this romantic desire for another individual, a relationship is nothing more than lust or infatuation.
Attached: Like the mother-child bond, attachment comes after the initial attraction. Attachment is the long term love that appears anywhere from one to three years into a romantic relationship (sometimes sooner and very rarely after), and youll know youve found it when you can honestly say, “Ive seen the worst and the best you have to offer, and I still love you,” while your partner feels the same way.
Committed: When it comes to affairs of the heart, commitment is more than just monogamy. Its the knowledge that your partner cares for you and has your back, no matter what the circumstances. People who are strongly committed to one another will, when faced with seemingly negative information about their partner, see only the positive. For example, a friend comments that your partner doesnt say a lot. “Ah yes, hes the strong, silent type,” you reply. People with less commitment to their partner would instead say something like, “Yeah, I can never have a conversation with him. Its annoying.”
Intimate: Intimacy is a crucial component of all relationships, regardless of their nature. In order to know another, you need to share parts of yourself. This self-revealing behavior, when reciprocated, forms an emotional bond. Over time this bond strengthens and even evolves, so that two people merge closer and closer together. Intimacy by itself if is a great friendship, but compiled with the other things in this list, it forms an equation for true love.