Posted on Dec 13, 2023Read on

Why We Love by Helen Fischer | GratitudeSeries 40/60

As I navigated the turbulence of a break-up last year, both romantically and professionally, I stumbled upon a beacon of understanding in Helen Fisher's "Why We Love." This book, rooted in the depths of biological anthropology, offered me a logical lens to view the enigma of love, especially during a time when my heart felt like it needed to be pulled out, chopped into pieces, and scattered to the birds.

Fisher describes love as an outcome of our brain chemistry, involving neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and norepinephrine, which influence our mood, concentration, and motivation​​. It's akin to a natural drug; when we're with someone special, dopamine floods our brains, creating a feeling of addictive pleasure. This explains the intense reliance and yearning we often experience in love.

In my journey, I realized that love has an order - lust, love, attachment. Interestingly, this sequence contrasts starkly with the traditional Indian arranged marriage system, where marriage precedes love, often neglecting lust. In the dating world, we generally start with the premise of falling in love. Apps like Pure or Feet Life focus on lust, but they rarely progress to attachment, as only "attached couples/females" are prevalent there.

Dr. Huberman's podcast on desire, love, and attachment further cemented this sequence for me. It was a revelation that helped me understand my experiences. Love, in its entirety, is not just a whimsical feeling but a complex interplay of emotions, chemistry, and evolution.

Fisher's book also delves into the evolution of love. About 3.5 million years ago, human evolution took a turn when we began walking on two feet. This change led to a form of serial monogamy, where couples stayed together just long enough to raise a child to infancy before moving on. This practice ensured genetic diversity and might have been the precursor to our modern understanding of romantic love​​.

Moreover, Fisher's concept of the "lovemap" resonated deeply with me. This internal guide, unique to each individual, is shaped by personal experiences and directs us towards specific partners. It explains why, in a room full of people, we might find ourselves inexplicably drawn to one person over another​​.

Through Fisher's insights, I've come to see love not just as an emotional rollercoaster but as a fundamental aspect of human evolution, shaped by our biology and experiences. Her work has helped me to make sense of my experiences, transforming the pain of a break-up into an opportunity for growth and self-discovery.

In the end, love is a complex feeling with neuromodulators under pinning this core emotions. Like most emotions if we understand it deeply, we can regulate it top down with natural and supplemental protocols. We explore this in our wellbeing protocol.

As I emerge from the shadows of heartache, I find myself more resilient, more enlightened, and, like a kintsugi cup, beautifully remade with golden seams.

Thank to Dr. Helen Fischer for “Why we Love”


Recommended Reading