Three Components to Love? Yes!

Dr. Sternberg’s research on love and its components is some of the best I have read.  Rather than a spiritual approach to love, he really sought to understand love from a practical standpoint and found that love has three components, or traits.  These are:

  1. Intimacy – which has to do with the friendship and closeness in a relationship
  2. Passion – this includes the desire for and romantic attraction of love; hes this means sex too…
  3. Decision/Commitment – this is a definite decision to enter into a loving relationship with another and a sense of commitment to them and the relationship.

I found his theory wonderful as this allows us to understand love in any relationship.  The following graphic provides insight into love from its various traits and what it looks like with select traits lacking.  Love has its greatest meaning when all three components are present, or what he calls Consummate love.  If only Intimacy is present, he points out that these folks simply like each other.  Love devoid of passion and intimacy is empty love.  And passion without intimacy and commitment is infatuation.

This might help us understand why many relationships break up and fall apart as they lose one or two of these components.  For example, couples who cohabitate tend to have passion and intimacy but no commitment.  Thus the reason that if these couples marry the majority divorce.  Why, commitment was not a part of the relationship.

I will leave the graphic for you to consider.  Good day…

What Story Does Your Relationship Tell?

I just read a really good story about WW2.  It was amazing.  Real life characters.  Real life challenges.  Real life emotions that we can all relate to as we read it.  And then the ending of the book.  WOW!  What a great read it was.  I am ready to read the next in the series!  As you well know there are many kinds of stories.  Some are dramas, some are tragedies, some are mysteries, some are comedies, and some are love stories.

I have also realized that my marriage is a story.  I write this story every day of my marriage.  And who reads this story?  My children.  They get to watch the story play itself out each day, every week, monthly and yearly.  What kind of story are they reading?  A tragedy?  A mystery?  A drama?  Or  a love story?  Sadly, most children today are reading dramas and tragedies and very little love stories.  I want my children to read of love story: a story of two people in love, who challenge each other and themselves to love better, more meaningfully, and that at the end of the book (read that as til death do us part), the story of love is complete.

Everything you do in your marriage writes a story.  What are your children and others reading?  You decide by what you write.  What you write is indicated by how you treat each other.

Let’s write love stories.