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Why Do We Love?

Lars HindsleyBy Lars Hindsley Thu 26 Sep 2013 6:50 PM EST | 3390 Views
(DL) – It's been said that love is patient, kind... blah blah blah. Love is many things, ultimately love is a hard word. It's hard to come by, hard to find, hard to accept, hard to follow's hard! A hard word is hard to define. A word such as love begs the great question of why do we love?

It's important as we begin this excercise you accept that love is love, it's not desire. It's not something that makes you feel close to one person emotionally and desire another sexually. The love here is true love. The love that if you get it right – you will never leave that person. What inside of us makes us want a love like that?

The shortest answer is we love that we may be loved. Seems like a cruel answer. It reads like some smart ass didn't want to give a better explaination, all you need is clarity to the statement. There are reasons. Before they are given let's identify the common thread through them all. After all, anthropologist Hellen Fisher, author of Why We Love answers this question based on instinctive brain systems. She breaks down the anatomy. For Hellen the answer to why we love is stated as the presence of motivation, there is a craving, there is obsession. But let's not call love something we are motivated to do, or crave or obsess over. The real question is why do we crave, why do we obsess? What is it that love makes us so motivated. Here are the answers to why we love from an entirely different point-of-view. Why do we love?

We want someone to trust.

We do not want to be alone.

We need someone to be vulnerable to. 

We need someone whom we are comfortable with sharing our vulnerabilities.
Love in Paris

We Need Someone to Trust

Life is long. For those of us with family, the bond of blood is generally enough to know those people will be with you through thick and thin. But many grow up never knowing what family is, or not having the love of family. Love from one person becomes that family. That person is the one person you treat as family, you trust them. Deep inside we want that. Even if you have that from family there comes a day where you leave the nest and that void must be filled. Sure it can go a while before you feel the need to fill it, but a day comes when that void becomes something you no longer wish to leave empty. If you don't have that need, then more power to you. Most of us do. This is one reason we love.  

We Do Not Want To Be Alone

Here again the same story plays out. If you don't have family, this one person fills that void. If you do have family, you move on one day. There even comes a time when you leave friends behind and a roommate is not enough. Living on your own, that desire gnaws at you. You don't want to be alone, but you don't want just anyone. It goes back to the first point, that someone should be someone you trust.

We Need Someone Whom We Are Comfortable with Sharing Our Vulnerabilities

From the day we are born we are taught to be strong. The words, "Only the strong survive" is instilled upon us, and yet something about the way we are built makes us want to share our weakness. But not to just anyone. It needs to be someone special. We all have vulnerabilities. We hide them often. When we share our vulnerabilities with the right person, they help us better understand our self and hopefully become a better person. 

We Need Someone We Respect Enough To Make Us Better Ourselves. 

Who hasn't heard a man proclaim to a woman, "You make me want to be a better man",  or "You make me a better man."  Where does that come from?

We love, so that we may be loved. We want someone to that challenges us, someone almost unreachable. Someone that we feel is almost too good for us to deserve. Why? Because each of us wants to be a better person. Nothing motivates you more than the love of someone that you feel you need to work for. We want to be deserving of love. We want it because that challenge of love in turn makes us feel special. Love makes you feel special because you feel as if you have someone in your life that makes you feel lucky to have them. They are special, they are hard to get. They gave you the dedication of 'love'. It is something they decided to give only to you. Love grows from both sides when each of you gently challenge each other to be better people. Each day you share your hopes. Each day you share your battles, and each day you both know the other is a prize given to no one else.

Some may argue we love because without it we would not have the desire to procreate. That can't be true since many have no desire to procreate and still desire love. 

Studies argue that love is a combination of motivation and reward wired inside of us. That may be true, but science overlooks the easist answer. We do in fact love so that we in turn may be loved. We want to be loved, but we want to be loved by the right person. The right person then validates who we are and want to be. The right person validates us to us. The right person enables us to even love our self. 

We love because our maker built these needs into us. If you don't believe in a maker, that's fine.  But for whatever reason, we are wired this way.

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