Love is something that we are naturally drawn to. From parents to romantic partners to pets to children – we experience love in a wide variety of different ways. We sometimes find it to be a hassle, while at other times it seems to be the driving factor behind what keeps our world spinning. But what is it? Is it an emotion? An abstract concept? Or is it something entirely different altogether?
There’s a reason that poets, musicians, and writers of all sorts have been drawn in by love: there’s not a whole lot that is known for certain. I’m sure you have read those mass forwarded emails that talk about what children think love means. Terri (age 4), for example, thinks that love is “what makes you smile when you’re tired.” Abstract? Maybe. But not necessarily wrong.
Because we are so fascinated by love and how it affects each person, here are some truly interesting facts that you may or may not have heard:
01. Perhaps creepy, but in a phenomenon that researchers refer to as “sexual imprinting,” it has been found that men are more attracted to women who have bone structures that are similar to their own mothers.
02. A strong sense of humor is though to be a sign of intelligence. this is why, when assessing a potential partner, we tend to be more attracted to those who are funny.
03. Even small levels of physical contact such as holding hands can act as a slight pain reliever and can help to alleviate feelings of stress and fear.
04. Men with deeper voices are more likely to make a lasting impression on women than men with higher voices. (My guess is this does not carry over to women.)
05. Falling in love can induce a calming effect on the body and mind, raising levels of nerve growth factor for up to a year.
06. According to scientists/psychologists, it takes (on average) a mere 90 seconds to 4 minutes to decide whether you have feelings for someone.
07. Researchers have found that adrenaline activities done during a date can make a potential partner more attractive to the other.
08. When you are looking at someone you love, your pupils dilate. (They react, ironically, the same when you are looking at someone you hate.)
09. For most people, the urge to fall in love is a primitive, biological drive.
10. When someone looks at a new love, the neural circuits that are usually associated with social judgement are suppressed. So in a way, love really is blind.
11. Falling in love is similar to taking a dose of cocaine – both experiences affect the brain similarly and trigger a similar sensation of euphoria. (One is a MUCH better idea)
12. In some parts of Ireland, if a woman eats a four-leaf clover while thinking about a man, supposedly he will fall in love with her.
13. Many cultures use knots as symbols of an eternal love that has neither a beginning nor an end.
14. People are more attracted to those that they share a level of attractiveness with, or, in other words, are equally socially desirable.
15. Couples that are either too similar or too different tend not to last very long. Apparently, there always has to be a foundation of similarities, but there also has to be things that the two of you learn from each other.
Bonus Semi-Unrelated Fact: The founder of match.com, Gary Kremen, lost his girlfriend to someone that she met on match.com