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Your brain in love?

In a fascinating new book, Dirty Minds: How Our Brain Influences Love, Sex, and Relationships, author Kay Sukel explores the neurobiology of love. I am a science fan so this was right up my alley! I reached out to her and asked, “What happens to our brain when we fall in love?”

(Don’t laugh because when you realize that the stupid things you do and say when you are head over heels in love is rooted in science, it makes you feel better!)

Kayt Sukel: For a long time, we’ve thought of love as an emotion. But it’s got more a lot more staying power than that. Love results in actual physical changes to the brain. An important part of our “reptilian brain,” or the most evolutionarily preserved part of the human brain, helps to facilitate risk and reward processing.

Romantic love makes changes to that circuitry through the increase and decrease of key neurochemicals. That’s why love can make us feel physical sensations like butterflies in the belly or sweaty palms. It’s why love feels so good and compelling. It’s also why we can be both so obsessed with our intended yet so distracted by the rest of the world. And it’s why we often make bad decisions and see our lover in those rose-colored glasses. Love is a powerful, bold and neurally altering thing.

See? Love is neurally-altering! Perhaps this will help us when we are knee-deep in love and need a little insight.

Have you ever experienced this firsthand? Do you think you have worn those rose-colored glasses before? In hindsight, what did you learn about yourself?

Tomorrow, we will continue to dig into how the brain affects sex. Stay tuned!

By Wise Diva, Misadventures in Atlanta Dating Blog

190 comments Add your comment

Lady~

March 19th, 2012
1:18 pm

Sorry to say, but once a man cuts his losses (sorry lack of a better phrase), he’s done. <<<<truth.com

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
1:21 pm

Bluzgirl…..relate..relax…release

..inhale…exhale and now say it with me……relate..relax…release
Close your eyes and repeat this. Your grieving several things at once and don’t know how to process it all. Take some time,seen?!

I lost my grandmother late January and another close family member six weeks to the day she passed so I understand…but you won’t be any good to your friend if you, yourself aren’t 100% (or as close as you can get given the circumstances)

Bluzgirl

March 19th, 2012
1:28 pm

Thank you Sassy…it is a lot to deal with at once. When I’m around my friend’s wife, I can be strong and we can share stories and laugh and cry. I’m sitting here at work like a zombie. I just don’t know how to deal with all the grief.

Willie Dynamite

March 19th, 2012
1:37 pm

Anyone do anything fun or exciting over the weekend? It was beautiful outside and felt good to get out and about.

Leggs

March 19th, 2012
1:38 pm

Now that I’ve read everyone’s comments, swiss, I wholeheartedly agree with your 12:45!

SlimUno

March 19th, 2012
1:41 pm

WD – I did go see 21 Jump Street and it turned out to be much more funny than I originally anticipated. How about yourself, what did you get into over the weekend?

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
1:42 pm

Willie my weekend was good… I avoided unwanted drama and did some stuff around the house. Washed the car (in vain cause pollen’s errrwhere), grilled out with my brother n sister-in-law and watched alot of basketball.

Willie Dynamite

March 19th, 2012
1:45 pm

Slim – Hung out with my lil one because the pollen kept the Wifey and oldest ones in the house. We actually had milk shake date at Stonecrest. Did you get your ice cream?

Sassy – Good for you, we grilled a lil bit as well but I didn’t watch any B-ball.

Leggs

March 19th, 2012
1:48 pm

“I just don’t know how to deal with all the grief.” – In time you will find a way, and I believe you will. However, if you keep even the tiniest of a corner of your heart grieving because your ex didn’t reach out and comfort you, you’re doing yourself a huge disservice. Girl, stand up and pinch yourself. Also, if you ex should contact you, please don’t chastise him for not coming to your aid/showing concern for your welfare quicker. It’s no longer his place to do any of that.

i'm swiss

March 19th, 2012
1:49 pm

Wille D — Won 2 tennis matches in straight sets. In my singles match yesterday, I was down 0-5 in the second set, then reeled off 7 straight games to win it in straight sets. :D My last service game at 6-5: Ace wide, forehand winner up the line, ace middle, forehand winner cross court. Boooyah! :lol:

Also, got to watch fellow DAWG, John Isner, knock off Novak Djokovic to reach his first Masters 1000 final & crack the top 10 for the first time. (And then lose to Federer the next day, but hey, good run anyway). :lol:

Willie Dynamite

March 19th, 2012
1:51 pm

Swiss – down 0-5 and reeled off 7 straight games. Dayum did your opponent twist an ankle or did you have tonya harding mistakenly bump into him during a break?

i'm swiss

March 19th, 2012
1:52 pm

Willie D — Nah, I just extracted my head from my arse & stopped making unforced errors.

kimmie

March 19th, 2012
1:55 pm

Bluzgirl – I’m extremely sorry for your loss. I’ve been where you are, and not to negate the friendship you had, but I lost my youngest brother and then a year later my dad had a stroke. My most recent ex at that time didn’t check on me, nor did I expect him to. AND, the guy I was seeing at the time dad had the stroke decided to check out on me as well. He dropped me off at the hospital and left to go hang out with his buddies. That’s the last time I saw him!

It could be also, Bluz, that your recent ex didn’t really understand or accept your friendship with the ex that passed. He could have even been jealous of your friendship. Sounds ugly, but some people are that way.

Let being there for your friend & his wife drown out any thoughts of him. And as for your stuff, chalk it up to a loss. He could stick them jumper cables and all up where the sun don’t shine if it were me!

SlimUno

March 19th, 2012
1:56 pm

WD – Actually, I didn’t get any ice cream over the weekend. I was over by Stonecrest though and ended up hitting the new seafood joint up, Marlin & Ray’s I believe is what it’s called. Have you ever tried that spot? The food was pretty seasoned and tasty. I was too full for ice cream afterwards

disco

March 19th, 2012
2:09 pm

sassy – got my car washed Friday and was feeling so good leaving the car wash. I didn’t even care that it rained Friday night and Saturday because my car was just that dirty. still, I must say, I was feeling some kind of way today when I saw the layer of green film on my car.

I watched a foreign film called tsotsi over the weekend. it was pretty good (even considering I had to read subtitles).

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:10 pm

Bluz,how old are u?

(going for the fatty meat today(Bluz’s posts) too tired to keep Up!–lawdie,did I just say a coded phrase? :lol: )

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:11 pm

Tsotsi means thief,Disco

Shona word …

u feel me Disco? :lol:

Willie Dynamite

March 19th, 2012
2:13 pm

Slim – You are banned from even mentioning Ice Cream this week. I haven’t tried Marlin and Rays yet. The Wifey usually tries new places out with her gf’s for lunch or happy hour. I’ll let her give me the 411 before I try it. I hate being disappointed and spending $$ at the same time.

disco

March 19th, 2012
2:15 pm

ex – I was actually thinking it meant thug or something but thief is fitting since the movie started with a robbery/murder on a train and the main storyline revolved around a carjacking. it took place in Johannesburg.

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:17 pm

some folk need to learn that probably 2 in a 100,000 people can really be “friends” after they break up. Prolly has to do with the brain chemistry, or having seen somebody make that certain face,.or sound. Just sayin’

let it go Bluz, you ex isn’t your emotional support now.

Robert

March 19th, 2012
2:20 pm

@Lady – “I want a male’s perspective on Logic vs. Love…..”

A man’s brain works differently from a woman’s brain when it comes to “logic -vs-love. For example young men have no experience (20-35) are still trying to figure out what to do and are reacting on what they see, hear and touch (TV,internet, etc.). Older men (35-55) have children and grandchildren with little or no emotional attachment or feelings (love). All men need physical stimulation – (logic – breasts, buttocks, legs, hair, eyes, etc.) in order to be attracted to a woman and develop over-time an emotional attachment (love). Men need to feel the passion from a woman in order to fuel their desire. Women have emotional attachments by design and it is logical for women to be mother’s and caregivers. “Know These Things Abidith In Me – Faith, Hope & Charity – The Greatest ofTthese Things is Charity (Love)”

Science can not ignore these facts.

kimmie

March 19th, 2012
2:21 pm

Bluzgirl – Somehow I have a feeling even if the 2 of you were still together he wouldn’t be there for you anyway. Like someone said earlier, he “checked out” of you guy’s relationship a long time ago.

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:21 pm

Thug is actually better,come to think of it.

go ahead Disco!

Leggs

March 19th, 2012
2:22 pm

@kimmie, Bluz herself said that.

disco

March 19th, 2012
2:23 pm

Ex – context clues my brother.

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:24 pm

Bluz actions are why some dudes have ‘thriving’ rotations.

What a man to dude? :lol:

she still wants emotional support even tho they broke up…

Lady~

March 19th, 2012
2:24 pm

Thanks Robert!!!!!

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:25 pm

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:25 pm

Older men (35-55) have children and grandchildren with little or no emotional attachment or feelings (love).

wow Robert, what planet are you from??

SlimUno

March 19th, 2012
2:25 pm

WD – I don’t get an ice cream pass? I didn’t think shrimp & talapia would be a good mix to be followed up with ice cream. The spot isn’t that expensive and they do have happy hour daily at the bar $1 drafts, $4/$5 cocktails

kimmie

March 19th, 2012
2:26 pm

Leggs – Girl, the lower a dude sunk, the easier it was for me to get over him! I couldn’t be influence back in any way. When others on the outside looking in would question why we broke up or I let him go, I’d just give them the facts!

disco

March 19th, 2012
2:30 pm

kimmie – your post reads like it should have said “gurrrlll” instead of just girl.

Lady~

March 19th, 2012
2:31 pm

Lady~

March 19th, 2012
2:32 pm

lolalee good point I am not trying to breakdown his POV though lol

kimmie

March 19th, 2012
2:34 pm

disco – Guurrlll is what I should have typed, cause that’s how I felt!!LOL

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
2:35 pm

I was feeling some kind of way today when I saw the layer of green film on my car.

Me, too disco…not even an hour after I washed my car it had pollen on it…it’s that time of year so it is what it is…

Older men (35-55) have children and grandchildren with little or no emotional attachment or feelings (love).

Robert..umm..yeah okay… Please don’t tell me that all men between 35-55 with chirren and grandchirren aren’t emotionally attached…and don’t/can’t love? Please expound…

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:37 pm

Sassy amen. I know plenty of men who love very deeply.

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:37 pm

So Ladies?

a lot of uall..

When u holla and scream when in the cut,is that Emotion

Or it’s Logic…

coz some of uall enjoy this thang or feel it on another level altogether..

I tell ya..

and I have had some dudes talk gibberish too..I mean real heavy stuff

Emotion or Logic?

Lady~

March 19th, 2012
2:40 pm

hmmmmmmmmm 9 times out of ten it ain’t love but I digress Ex lol you funny dude

disco

March 19th, 2012
2:42 pm

lady – not only is it not love but it is very much contrived, intended to play into the man’s emotions. let’s face it, the fellas generally get more out of that screaming and hollering than we do. that’s why they still trying to ask questions instead of focusing on the task at hand. they need verbal “validation”.

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
2:43 pm

Logic= dayum dude is working it=this d!@# is soooo good

Emotion=verbalizing said logic

SlimUno

March 19th, 2012
2:43 pm

I have had some dudes talk gibberish too

Ex – Care to elaborate on that statement and is this why you often express interest in the feelings of other wangs? :lol: jkbnr

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
2:45 pm

the fellas generally get more out of that screaming and hollering than we do…. they need verbal “validation”.

Shhh disco…You ain’t s’posed to tell!!!!! :lol:

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:46 pm

@Sassy
Hysterical!

@disco
some truth to that… men need the feedback — and the ego boost.

Sassy Me..Juicy Fruit ;-)

March 19th, 2012
2:46 pm

Slim I was gonna go there,too, when I read that but I was gonna let it go…

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:46 pm

@Slim
I was wondering the same thing

lolalee

March 19th, 2012
2:47 pm

Sassy ~ enquiring minds want to know…

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:47 pm

But if u can’t validate it then we ain’t in this together Disco…I got be given assurance or license to go harder,for our mutual enjoyment..

So those soft whispers..go harder daddy,I’m feeling u daddy gives us both energy and license to do our thang..

but the hollering can spook someone if not forewarned.

I mean,some females are just Loud! :lol:

cba

March 19th, 2012
2:48 pm

Hmmm….Hemy was 48, I don’t know what you call it, but he had something.
And now, he’s about to get his feelings hurt.

Exiled!

March 19th, 2012
2:48 pm

meant Heard! @Slim