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We Did the Research: Love at First Sight, Dating, Sex and Marriage

We Did the Research: Love at First Sight, Dating, Sex and Marriage

We Did the Research: Love at First Sight, Dating, Sex and Marriage

The beliefs and expectations we have about romantic relationships significantly impact how we see ourselves and the people we care about. Many of our preconceived notions about intimate relationships are unfounded by research. Relationships are assumed to be simple and straightforward. Love, it seems, should be purely instinctive and unassailable by reason. The stories of couples who met because their eyes met across a busy party room or because they accidentally bumped into one other at a club are all too common. This is the person I'm going to marry, and I couldn't be happier. What if this is all just a story that will end one day?

Definition of Love at First Sight

When selecting a sexual partner, a mere 100 milliseconds is all it takes. If you find that person beautiful in that single second, emotions and animal instincts will begin to take over. The look is undoubtedly the most powerful tool when it comes to human courtship. In societies where eye contact between the sexes is tolerated, men and women typically look closely at possible mates for around 2 to 3 seconds. Their pupils may dilate, a sign of strong interest. They lower their lids and turn their gaze away from you. Subjects evaluated photographs of faces merged with their own as more appealing when researchers invited them. People all across the globe are drawn to people with excellent complexions. Generally, males in most countries prefer fat, wide-waisted women over thin ones. Those judgments are made in the brain's medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC). Whenever we're ready to have a family, our brains are always on the prowl for potential partners who would make excellent parents and give us healthy offspring.

What Happens Next?

The hormone of attachment, oxytocin, is in overdrive. Chapman (2011) claimed that there is an increase in the bonding hormone oxytocin when one is attracted to another person. As the brain's reward centers are activated by oxytocin, other neurotransmitters are released, such as dopamine, which positively affects the body's immune system. At this time, you begin to concentrate more carefully on that individual, and your eyes will light up with excitement. It's like seeing a dog's ears perk up when its owner returns home, what it's like to be attracted to someone. Oxytocin, or the "cuddle hormone," is a neurotransmitter that makes us want physical contact with those we care about. Oxytocin is the hormone responsible for sloppy judgment. Obsession and obsessive behavior are common side effects. To rekindle the spark, you're being compelled to reach out and reconnect with this person. It releases more oxytocin when you receive more signals from your partner that they are interested. This is the time of day when our hearts beat faster, our hands sweat, and we get butterflies in our stomachs.

Can Love Grow at First Sight?

Love, at first sight, is attainable if we see love as a simple physiological sensation. Wolfe (2010) noted the brain's dopamine and norepinephrine levels can tell you that you are experiencing a love experience. Rather, looking at love from a philosophical or sociological angle, it becomes more about a course of action that we choose of our own will. Even if we're attracted to someone, we can determine that they aren't right for us for various reasons.

Is Love at First Sight Real?

Grant-Jacob (2016) suggested that love-at-first-sight is possible, but there is a catch. Take some time after your initial encounter and become acquainted with each other. Only then can you determine whether or not it's a good fit. An initial physical attraction typically plays a role in the notion of "love at first sight". When you are having a good time with someone and love how they make you feel and smell and how they find you so wonderful, it is an incredible experience. In other words, it isn't love—at least not the love needed for a successful marriage. You can't only fall in love with someone's looks; you have to fall in love with their brains, character, morals, personality, and abilities.

Do the First Sight Feelings Last Long?

If you want to avoid the butterflies for more than a year, wait between nine and twelve months after birth. Pregnancy lasts around three months, and the baby must have matured enough to be viable before a woman may conceive and give birth. It's all about ensuring the continuation of the human race. Although 'love at first sight,' as referred to by Hollywood romantics, certainly occur, true love only emerges through time. However, if couples take the time to know each other before they get married, that initial spark can grow into a long-lasting relationship. Whether virtually or in person, spending time together doing things you both enjoy is one way to achieve this goal: going on dates that combine your interests with those of your date. It is good to discuss short and long-term goals, fears and successes, and what you hope to accomplish in the next one and five years. People begin to recognize each other's unique strengths, weaknesses, baggage, red flags, and everything in between after six months of dating. A successful marriage is possible as long as you can deal with the issues and have a cool head throughout the process. However, don't underestimate the value of the first spark. The remainder of the marital puzzle might be taken for granted when two people meet and fall in love 'under the spell' of love at first sight. It is critical to remember that a long and happy marriage requires more than just love. Being able to communicate openly with your partner is just as important as respecting their goals, dreams, and aspirations in life. An intense spark can't keep up with that; it takes time, dedication, and hard effort.


Chapman, H. M. (2011). Love: A biological, psychological and philosophical study. Senior honors projects, 254, 1-29.

Grant-Jacob, J. A. (2016). Love at first sight. Frontiers in Psychology, 7, 1113.

Wolfe, P. (2010). Brain matters: Translating research into classroom practice. ASCD.