Love and Romantic Relationships
What Is Love? What Is Love?
Three Component of Love
Intimacy Feeling of closeness Connectedness Bondedness
- Wanting happiness for other person
- Give and receive emotional support
- Feeling that gives rise to romance
- Not in all relationships Found in lovers
- Decision to love a person (short term)
- Commitment to the person, maintaining the relationship (long term)
- A state of intense longing for the union with another
Lust what We Know About Human Sexual Desire
- Who are they in love with
- Who are they sexually attracted to
Love list had a 2% overlap with sexual attracted list In love list had a 85% overlap with sexually attracive list
Would you marry a Person you were not in love with ?
- Regan & Berschid asked if you would marry some one who had all the qualities you desired but were not in love with
- The affection and tenderness we feel for those with who our lives are intertwined with .
Would include :
- Sprecher and Regan gave couples scales to measure their companionate love and passionate love.
- They found passionate love initially rose but after it peaked it declined as time went on.
- Companionate love did not decline
How do I love thee
Three Styles of Love
Eros : The god of love
- Powerful physical attraction
- Strong at first then lessens over time
Eros style of love
- My lover and I have the right physical chemistry
- Our love making is intense and satisfying
- We were made for each other
Storge : love of sibling/ playmate
- Love style develops when people have the same interests
- Starts out as friends and build to love
- The best kind of love grows out of a long friendship
- Love is really a deep friendship not a mystical emotion
- Genuine love requires caring
Ludus : The game
- Bounce from lover to lover
- Experience less satisfaction then other styles
- I enjoy playing the game of love with different people
- I try to keep my lover a little uncertain of my commitment to him or her
- I sometimes have to keep my lovers from finding out about one another
Secondary Stages Of Love
- The combination of eros and ludus
- Love the idea of being in love
- When my lover does not pay enough attention to me I feel sick
- When I am in love I have trouble concentrating
- Sometimes I get so excited about being in love I can’t sleep.
- Combination of ludus and storge
- Compatibility is the goal
- The greater the compatibility the greater the love
- One consideration in choosing a partner is how they will reflect on my career
- I plan my life carefully when choosing a lover
- How compatible is his/her background with mine for future children
- Give love with nothing in return
- I would rather see something bad happen to me then to have my lover unhappy
- I am willing to sacrifice my own wishes to let my partner achieve his/hers
- I would endure all things for the sake of my partner
Gender differences In love styles
- Men seem to see love in terms of eros or ludus
- Women have a more pragmatic out look on love
Goal of Romantic Relationships
- Gain resources and status
- reassurance and information
Why is Sex Important
- Sex differentiates passionate romantic love from other forms of love
- Provides mutual pleasure and enjoyment
- Is looked at differently by men and women
Sexual Satisfaction Sexual Desire
- Men view on sex is different then women
- Masturbate earlier and more frequently
- Women see commitment as a context for sex
- More interested in intimacy
- Less interested in casual sex
- Sexual fantasies involve partner
- Hormones that play a key role in sex
- Hormone that acts as a neurotransmitter in the brain
- After stimulation of the nipples
- Can be released in both sexes after orgasm
- Leads to more attachment and longer relationships
- Correlation between sexual desire and testosterone production/levels
- Males with malfunctioning testes will have less sexual fantasies
- Women injected with testosterone will have and increase in sexual fantasies
- The tendency to prefer unrestricted sex or restricted sex
- Restricted sex- only in the context of loving, long term, committed relationship
- Unrestricted – without love
Socio-sexual Orientations Scale
- Simpson & Gangestand developed a scale to measure socio-sexual orientation
- How often do you fantasize about having sex with someone other then your partner?
- I need a close attachment with some one before I can have sex with them.
- More partners in the past
- Have sex earlier in relationship
- Intend to have more partners in the future
- Have more then one partner at the same time
- More likely to have one night stands
- Feel less commitment to current partner
- Males tend to be more unrestricted and females more restricted.
- The traits an unrestricted person look for are socially visible, attractive.
- The traits a restricted person looks for are good parenting skills, responsibility, faithfulness
- Both types want sex just as much!
- Testosterone injected into men with defective testes
- Testosterone levels measured in women after reporting number of sexual fantasies
- Testosterone levels affect both sexual dysfunction in men and women
- Triangular theory of love
Human Sexuality : How men and women differ
- Looks at gender differences in:
- Sexual desire – the subjective experience of being interested in sexual objects or activates or wishing to engage in sexual activities.
Sexual Desire in Men
- Rate their own sex drive higher then females
- Think about sex more often
- Visit prostitutes more often
- Spend more money on x rated videos and magazines
Sexual Frequency in Couples
- Heterosexual–compromise between the desire of male and female partners
- Homosexual–lesbian couples have sex less often than gay men or heterosexual couples
- Women more likely to refrain from sex due to religious reasons.
- Women’s sexuality tends to be strongly linked to close relationships.
- Women have more romantic view of sexual relationships
- Intimacy is the important goal.
Sexual Relationships in Homosexuals
- Lesbians–more likely to form relationships from preexisting friendships, sexual fantasies are more personal and romantic
- Gay men–more likely to have sex with partners outside their relationship, have sexual fantasies much like heterosexual males.
- Sexual concept includes romantic, passionate
- Men sexual self–concept also includes aggression
- Extent to which they see them selves as
- Men are more assertive than women
- Sexual fantasies–men are more likely to imagine doing something sexual, take more active role
- Woman use many different ways to get a man to have sex with her but typically not force or violence
- Physically coercion is more typical of male behavior
- Also seen in heterosexual relationships
- Women’s sexual beliefs and behaviors are more easily shaped by cultural social and situational factors.
- Changes in behavior due to socialization
Changes in Sexuality
- Most likely to see variability in sexual frequency in women
- Women are more likely to change their sexual orientation
- 25% of 18 -25 year old women who identified as bisexual or lesbian changed their identity five years later.
Changes Due to Socialization
- Women more likely to change behaviors due to situational influences
- Education: going to college more liberal attitudes
- Relocation: move to new culture less sexual
Gender difference In Sex
- Students at Arizona State University were asked what was the lowest level of intelligence that you would accept in:
DATE SEX STEADY MARRIAGE Women Men Intelligence And the differences are even more pronounced for one-night stands
Experiment by Clark and Hatfield
- College students were approached by member of opposite sex and asked one of three questions
- I have seen you around campus and think you are very attractive, will you:
- Go out on a date with me tonight
- What do you think they Found?
Go out Go to apartment Go to bed Women Men % Saying “Yes” 0 20 40 60 80 100 (Clark & Hatfield, 1989)
Why the Differences
- Sexual encounters with strangers do not fulfill women's goals for sexual relationship. Need for love and intimacy in order to have good sex.
- Not just fear of pregnancy
- In lesbians where no fear of pregnancy,
- lesbians prefer and lead less active sex lives then heterosexual women
- Given that pregnancy results, what is the minimum investment of copulation for:
- Minimum female investment
- 9 months of pregnancy, 30 lbs of nutrients, 3-4 years of nursing
- 5 minutes of copulation 1 sperm, one ten trillionth of an ounce
- Females make more judicious mate choices
- Males less discriminate about who they mate with
- What makes someone attractive?
Who is More Attractive?
- Faces that exaggerate gender characteristics
Weight to Hip Ratio (WHR)
- Calculated by dividing waist measurement by hip measurement
- Women with a 0.7 WHR are often rated as more attractive by men regardless of culture, race, religion or ethnicity.
- Examples: Twiggy, Kate Moss, Salma Hayek & Marilyn Monroe
Preference in Men
- Asked to rank the attractiveness of 12 line drawings of average height females figures
- Different levels of WHR (.7, .8, .9)
- Three levels of body weight (underweight- 90lbs, normal weight- 120 lbs, and overweight- 150 lbs).
- A WHR of 0.7 for women and 0.9 for men have been shown to correlate strongly with general health and fertility
- Women within the 0.7 range
- Optimal levels of estrogen
- Less susceptible to major diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disorders and ovarian cancers.
- Less prostate and testicular cancer
- Symmetry of features seen as more attractive
- Symmetry–marker for good health
- Greater asymmetry was related to more self-reported depression, neuroses, infertility, more physical health problems
- Associated with greater masculinity and dominance
- More symmetrical men have shorter courtships before intercourse, they invest the least money and time in them and they cheat on their mates much more often
Faces that Exaggerate Gender Characteristics
- Faces that exaggerate gender characteristics seen more attractive then average faces
- Big jaw, chin and large brow reflect androgen
- Smaller chin, nose, fuller lips reflect estrogen
- Who is it more important to?
- More important to men then to women.
- Attractive women can raise a mans social status but does not work the other way around.
- Women more concerned with a mans social status.
- Townsend and Levy (1990). Looked at the effects of status (measured by clothing), and attractiveness on female willingness to engage in a romantic relationship.
- Male targets were pre-rated for physical attractiveness
- 2 categories: handsome and homely
- Wore one of three costumes:
- Blazer, shirt designer tie, Rolex—described as being doctors (high status)
- Plain white shirt—described as being teachers (medium status)
- Uniform of a Burger King employee—described as being trainee (low status)
- Women were more willing to engage in relationships with high status/homely males than with medium or low status handsome males
- Cognitive bias in which the assessment of an individual quality serves to influence and bias the judgment of other qualities
- Attractive people are seen as having a more desirable personality and more skills than someone of average appearance
Benefits of Attractiveness
- Attractive individuals more socially competent, have higher self esteem, are less shy and have better social skills
- Limitations to Attractiveness
- Super attractive make others feel inferior, not as influential as less attractive
- Super attractiveness may cause resentment
- Seen as intellectually inferior
Goal of Romantic Relationships
- Gain resources and status
- Same as friendship—reassurance and information
- Passion fades, so why do we stay on long term relationships?
- Feeling of intimacy grows as passion fades
- Long term commitment in lovers is different than in friends
- Friends can go on long trip and we easily adjust to their absence
- Separation from lovers is extremely emotional
- Losing spouse to divorce or death causes more emotional distress then any other life event
- Having a marriage partner protects against major illness like cancer
Why Do We Form Attachments
- Separation of lovers is similar to that shown by infants separated from their mothers
- Some easily form relationships
- Others avoid commitment by having casual affairs
3 Types Of Attachment Style
- Anxious/ ambivalent attachment
- Avoidant attachment style
Secure Attachment Style
- Easily expressed affection towards their mother, did not worry about being abandoned
- Mothers acted consistently warm and responsive
- Visibly upset at any separation from their mother, preoccupied with possible abandonment
- Mothers acted inconsistently
- Sometimes ignoring children and some times intruding on activities
- Disregarding their mother
- Refusing attention when their mother returned
- Often translates into Adult Relationships
- I find it easy to get close to others and feel comfortable having them depend on me. I don’t worry about being abandoned
- I am someone uncomfortable being close to others. I have had a hard time trusting. My Partner wants me to be more intimate then I feel comfortable with.
- I am reluctant to get close as I would like. I worry about my partner not really loving me and leaving me. I want to merge completely with another person and that pushes people away.
- Anxious/ Ambivalent Style
Threats and Attachment
- Mothers provide a safe haven
- Situations in life can cause:
Harlow Monkey Study
- Infant rhesus monkeys separated from mothers
- Ran to mother for comfort
- After comforted went back to explore
- Infants develop a schema about feeling and beliefs
- Secure attached–people can be trusted, they can be a safe haven
- Insecure attachment–close relationships provide acceptance but sometimes rejection, people are caring one minute and uncaring the next
- Adult theory of attachment
- Secure: explore, new toys
- Anxious/ Ambivalent : too worried about caregiver
- Avoidant: use play to avoid caregiver
- Secure: enjoy work, no fear of failure
- Anxious/Ambivalent use as a way to again acceptance
- Avoidant: use as a way to avoid social interaction, less satisfied with work
Do Attachment Styles Change?
- Remain constant over time
- Attachment styles of 12 month old still the same at 6 years old
- Major disruptions can cause change
- Anxious/Ambivalent – Avoidant
- Anxious/Ambivalent – Secure
Goals of Romantic Relationships
- Gain and maintain resources
- Women tend to prefer older men
- Men tend to prefer younger women
- What are they looking to gain?
- Older men can potentially provide financial resources
- Younger women can potentially provide more offspring
Differences in personal ads
- Men tend to advertise financial resources/ women request them
- Mature stockbroker looking to invest his time and bank account in young attractive women
- Young attractive college student looking for older man to spend time and money on her
When Women Gain Resources and Status
- Women who have high status/resources
- look more for personality/attractiveness
- Independent professional woman looking for a fun and attractive man to travel around the world with
- Norm Li asked people to design a mate under two conditions:
- High budget: mate dollars
- High budget – low sex differences
- Low budget – men and women made very different choices
Marital Patterns and Resources
- Monogamy—one woman and one man
- Polygamy—one man with more than one wife
- Polyandry—one woman with more than one husband, usually brothers
- Harsh conditions make it hard for single man and woman.
- When couple has more girls then the marriage patterns become polygamist
- Polygamy has to do with resources
- The more resources, the more wives
- A poor man might be able to spend more time with only wife
- Rich man can provide more resources
When Love Goes Bad
- Lose of a partner causes severe emotional distress
- What if that person was never your partner?
- What if you just won’t let go of a relationship?
- Erotomania is a disorder where a person is fixated and delusional in the belief that they are passionately loved by another person
- Usually a spiritual union rather then sexual desire
- Harass till law intervenes
- Erotomania most commonly seen in former lovers or marriage partners
- Incessant attempts to restore relationship
- 93% of people have experienced unrequited love.
- Bad for both parties involved
- Targets feel guilt, confusion and annoyance
- Would be lovers–damage self esteem, feel led on
Why So Hard to Let Go?
- Movies and books : win in the end
- Self preservation—won’t admit to self unacceptable as a lover
- Common problem in relationships
- Usually over same sex competitor
- Looked at differently by men and women
- Imagine that you discover the person with whom you are in a relationship with has become interested in someone else. Which would cause you more distress?
- Your partner falling in love with someone else
- Your partner having sex with someone else
- Men more distress in sexual infidelity
- Women more distress in emotional infidelity
- Men don’t want to raise children that are not their own
- Women lose resources if man falls in love with another women and leaves her
- ½ of marriages end in divorce
- Living together before marriage