The Chemistry of Love: Theoretical Approaches to Partner Selection. Based on theories of Harvell Hendrex Linda L. Zimmerman, M.A., LCPC Professor of Student Development. Men look for: enhancement of the species classic beauty good bone structure clear skin, shiny hair
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The Chemistry of Love: Theoretical Approaches to Partner Selection
Based on theories of Harvell Hendrex
Linda L. Zimmerman, M.A., LCPC
Professor of Student Development
Men look for:
enhancement of the species
good bone structure
clear skin, shiny hair
bright eyes, red lips
Women look for:
We seem to be searching for a very definite set of positive and negative traits.
2. social psychology
All have some validity, but is there more to how we select partners?
How is the brain involved in forming relationships?
Neuroscientist Paul McLean suggests a model that divides the brain into three concentric layers:
1. Cerebral Cortex - “new” brain
2. Limbic System - “old” brain
3.Brain Stem - “old” brain
Generates vivid emotions.
Most primitive layer, oversees:
When current events trigger the old brain, we can suddenly feel angry, sad, abandoned,
1. Before birth we are safe and warm in our mother’s womb.
2. Birth (rudely) forces us out of our idyllic existence.
3. After birth for a short time we are unified with ourselves and perfectly connected to the world.
We are taught:
1. Hides forbidden behavior from parents
2. Thinks angry thoughts but does not speak them aloud
3. Explores his body in the privacy of his room
4. teases younger siblings when parents are away
5. eventually decides some thoughts and feelings must be eliminated
6. gets a jolt of anxiety whenever he/she comes close to the forbidden thoughts or behaviors
7. constructs an imaginary parent in his head to police his/her thoughts and actions (superego)
The child reacts by:
1. “lost self” - the parts repressed in response to demands of society
2. “false self” - the facade erected to fill the void created by repression and lack of adequate nurturing
3. “disowned self” - negative parts of the false self that met with disapproval and were therefore denied
Grew up with parents who were not or could not be close, warm, or nurturing - cold, detached.
Grew up with parents who could not or would not let them explore or venture out - engulfing, confining.
These two types tend to grow up and marry each other, thus beginning an infuriating game of push and pull that leaves neither partner satisfied.
Harville Hendrix, Ph.D.,Getting the Love you Want, 1998.
We fervently believe that finding the perfect mate will make us whole again.
*according to Harville Hendrix