Love at first sight: How it really works
Love at first sight. Lust at first sight. Whatever you want to call it, there’s no denying that little something that immediately draws us to someone.
Yours truly is not a believer in love at first sight, simply, because, if we were to get all technical about what love is (assuming we really know what love is), it’d be impossible to love someone instantly, right? Plus, how can you love someone without knowing him or her? But somehow, after meeting a pretty cool guy this week, the first thing I did was call a friend to tell her I’d met my husband. Okay, I’ll be honest. I called about six friends. Maybe more. I was lil excited (and that doesn’t happen too often where men are concerned).
Days after, I went through all the shenanigans of infatuation, staring at his photo on BBM (yes, yuh gyul get he pin), and being totally excited when he struck up interesting conversation, and suggested that we hang out. But back to this love at first sight thing.
I can honestly say that it wasn’t love at first sight. Just a really big attraction or connection or vibe at first sight. Somehow, everything about him seemed like a nice fit. He was intelligent, mellow, humble, funny, and had that whole ‘quiet-strong’ aura going on. Oh, and it didn’t hurt that he was over six feet of caramel goodness.
The level of ‘hyperness’ I had for those first few days could only be explained by scientific data, which indicates that a release of powerful neurotransmitter chemicals into the nervous system, for example, epinephrine, dopamine, phenylethylamine, and endorphins, is the powerful, bio-chemical potion, which creates that physiological arousal that some of us call love at first sight.
Now, let’s assume he and I do hang out repeatedly; hopefully the outcome is that the more we hang out, the more we come to appreciate each other – unless one of us does something to break the spell, and dilute the potion with possible ‘effery’. But if this little encounter were to turn into something more (I’m hoping all my hubby goat mouth talk works, lol), there’s no denying that the first few moments of us vibing would have been somewhat influential for things to get to a strong, romantic stage.
Part of the love at first sight formula that some of us play into has a lot to do with how we perceive the other person. It’s like feeling like you’ve hit the lotto when you discover someone who honestly seems like a cool person, and whom you just ‘click’ with. And let’s not forget the role of physical attractiveness in all of this. It takes less than one second to decide whether you find someone physically attractive.
How you view the love at first sight theory may also have something to do with how you’re wired for love. Some of us just absolutely need sparks to fly for us to get caught up in the rapture of love. Some of us take a more logical (or desperate) approach to giving every single person a chance at romance.
This initial feeling that we’ve met someone who’s a fit – note I didn’t say Mr or Ms Right – could be viewed as crazy by some. I mean, how am I supposed to know if the man goes home and slits lizards apart for kicks?
Still, some people – like Helen Fisher, PhD, a biological anthropologist, research professor at Rutgers University, and Chief Scientific Advisor to the Internet dating site, chemistry.com – will tell you that we do have the intuitive skill to size up someone instantly. According to Fisher, we are drawn to those who have a similar degree of intelligence, share our religious and social values, and come from the same economic background, and within the first three minutes of talking to someone, we make up our minds about whether that person is ‘the one’ or one of ‘the ones’ for us (I added ‘the ones’ because I honestly believe that we’re compatible with more than one person, and not just a ‘soul mate’). She says that when we feel an immediate click, go ahead and trust our instincts.
I have to admit that I can relate to the theory that we’re drawn to someone who shares the similarities outlined above, because that whole ‘quiet-strong, intelligent’ aura that my interest exhibited was principally what drew me in, and threw my chemicals into overdrive.
Now, what does all of this clicking, intuition, and philosophizing guarantee for our future love life? Nothing. It could turn into something beautiful, or he could be an a$hole, or think I’m a hyper chick who had way too much Complan and Milo to drink, when I was growing up.
Love at first sight or vibe at first sight only does one thing, and that is to create a promising setting for either party to take things further. It doesn’t necessarily guarantee that you and homeboy or homegirl will fly away to Tobago for the most romantic wedding ever.
Some people may swear that love at first sight is real, and that from the first day of meeting, they and their partner have been inseparable. Some may say that while the vibe was there, it took a while for things to really progress. Some will say that all they really wanted to do was to jump the other person’s bones, and squeeze their bumcee.
Whatever you call it, what we commonly term love at first sight is really a series of physiological experiences that makes us go goo goo gah gah for a while, until reality hits us, and we realise that success at this thing called love, and the human interaction that goes along with it, demands much more than sensory overload.
Image credit: madamenoire.com
Check out the rest of this week’s issue (11/07/11; Issue 65):
- Alone in Münster: Adjusting to Life in Germany
- Five ways to recognise a Bishops girl
- Braving Religion: Three Homosexuals and an SDA University
- The Anatomy of a Pick-up Line
- How to Survive Waiting Forever in a Long Line
Look out for a new issue of Outlish.com every Monday!