Helen Fisher, anthropologist and expert on love and attraction, is very optimistic about the future of relationships. Even though the decline in the number of people getting married, the internet dating and the one night stands might unleash panic for some, they are actually good signs.
We do not live, as some may think, in a post-love or post-commitment era. The fact that people choose to get married later in life or not at all it’s only an indication that people realized you need to spend more time getting to know your partner before getting married.
Helen Fisher was part of a team of scientists who asked people living together why they hadn’t got married yet. The main reason people invoked was that they were afraid of divorce. Not only the legal and economic aspects of a divorce struck terror, but also the social and the emotional costs of it.
So apparently it’s a matter of caution. People are trying to learn everything there is to know about the other person before getting married. Which is a good thing, because once you know what you have and you are happy with it, you can fully commit to building a long and stable relationship.
So this process of fast sex and slow love can actually lead to better decisions and therefore to happier marriages.
Helen Fisher’s advice is to wait at least 2 years before getting married. It’s time enough to see how your partner handles different life situations, from family dinners to summer vacations.
But once committed, how can we sustain the romantic part of the relationship through the years?
1. Have sex as often as you can.
This will improve your immune system, will deepen your feelings of attachment and will help you and your partner relax.
2. Do new things together.
Romantic love is fueled by novelty: visit a new place, discuss the last book that you read, find a common hobby.
3. Non-sexual physical contact is important.
It creates deep attachment feelings. So hold hands, cuddle or pamper your partner with a massage.
Being in a long term and happy relationship can:
- Increase empathy
- Regulate your own emotions
- Create positive illusions (overlooking what you don’t like about the other and focusing on what you like)
Spread the knowledge, spread the love!