Theory of dating
But what do terms like ‘romantic love,’ ‘companionate love,’ and ‘consummate love’ actually mean? Passion is a love component that many of us are familiar with.It’s responsible for the wildly beating heart, the flip-flops in the stomach, that feeling of love at first sight.The lack of intimacy means that when passion mellows such relationships are often difficult to sustain (and also, depending on the level of commitment involved, tricky to dissolve!) In romantic love, the intimacy component brings a meeting of minds, while the passion component means that there's physical attraction too.
At the other end of the drama scale to romantic love is companionate love.
It’s an essential part of any lasting love, but, when devoid of intimacy and passion, it’s a part that can feel more like a duty than a romantic choice.
Often, a long-term relationship that has lost all passion and intimacy will hover in this ‘empty love’ stage before ending, but as Sternberg points out, love can begin here too: in an arranged marriage, for instance, the commitment often comes first.
): When you combine the fire of passionate infatuation and the bonds of commitment but don’t intimately who the other person is, you get fatuous love.
Whirlwind celebrity marriages and the clichéd quickie Vegas wedding can often be described as fatuous love, as can any ardent, committed connection built without much substance behind it.