Romantic love—we can’t live with it and we can’t live without it.
As humans we are very open both to great love and to great sorrow. We are built for monogamous love as well as for cheating. How we straddle the enormous divide between the drive to mate and the drive for independence varies with each of us, influenced by societal norms and even public health issues, like the hormone-altering-chemicals found in plastics and heavy metals.
Is the drive to love so deeply wired that it’s safe from outside toxicities, or might environmental pollution be changing our brains and thus our ability to love?
- Why is the drive to love so strong?
- Where does romantic love “live” inside our brains?
- Once we find love, how do we make it stay?
Tragedy has a way of defining us, so does our pursuit and relationship with love. Some of us get complacent in our intimate relationships. And most of us aren’t taught tools and negotiation skills in the love arena in the same way we are taught math and history. Yet, love rules our lives. When love goes right, it feeds our greatest joy, but when it goes wrong, it feeds our worst fears and depressions. Love has profound far-reaching effects on citizens and families, and thus affects not only individuals, but also countries and the world.
Love is a deep need—a subterranean drive that lives within the oldest recesses of our 4.4 million-year-old brain, right next to the drives for thirst and hunger. Yet we are not taught how to live in love or how to keep the fires of love burning. So, we often get love wrong.
In this show you’ll learn the exact part of your brain that allows you to see things you don’t particularly like in your lover, but gifts you the tolerance to accept them so as not to throw the entire relationship under the bus. Why do some of us give our beloveds enough chances to keep love alive, while others can’t? What does romantic love have to do with the family unit? How is love like the opposite of unhappiness?
You’ll discover the work of Dr. Helen Fischer, an anthropologist from Rutgers and scientific advisor for Match.com. Dr. Fischer is famous for her “3 brain systems of love,” which she theorizes evolved from long ago.
You’ll discover the “chemistry” of love and learn where it lives in the brain, and what it looks like when it’s combined with “calm” and “commitment.” You’ll learn about the debate concerning “chemistry” and why (like the movie with Meryl Strep and Alec Baldwin) it’s complicated.
You will learn the exact hormonal cascade of love as it births and lives inside the brain. There are specific neurological “light-ups” in the brain that spark lust, new love, and older long-term love. You will learn what part of the brain stays lit up in those couples who have been together for 30, 40, and 50 years, and why they still feel as in love as they did when they first met.
Dr. Fischer teaches that technology will never alter love. She says that swiping left or right on Tinder will never ruin love that is so deeply wired inside of us. Dr. Fischer assures us, love “lives” protected deep inside the “bowels” of the brain, right next to our survival mechanisms and way beneath conscious thought.
Dr. Berkson begs to differ. In this episode, she explains how hormone-altering chemicals threaten our brain structures and functions, even in the nooks and crannies beneath the deepest conscious recesses. Dr. Berkson has published this scientific debate in her latest book: Sexy Brain.
You will also learn:
- What’s the new “slow love?”
- How to pick the “right” person for both your brain and life.
- What David Whyte, the elegant and mesmerizing poet and motivational speaker, has to say about getting love right or wrong.
Did you know a broken heart has a billable insurance code? You’ll hear how a broken heart is exactly like a real heart attack. And how it’s different.
By the end of this scientific and lyrical conversation, you will understand the debate between “optimism” and “pessimism” and why love is here to stay. You will have an enhanced understanding of what love means for your brain health and even for the stability of your family and children.
- Book: Sexy Brain
- Book: Why is Love So Hard: Tips on how to soften love and make love stay
- Book: Juicy Souls: How we give our spirits away and how to get them back.
- Blog: Oxytocin: The Love/Orgasm Hormone
- Blog: Valentine’s Blog: Getting Love Right