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Chapter 12

Textbook Chapter 12.docx

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PSYC 215
Michael Sullivan

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Chapter 12: Close Relationships: Passion, Intimacy and Sexuality What is Love? Passionate and Companionate Love Passionate love: having strong feelings of longing, desire, and excitement towards a certain person. This is also called romantic love. Companionate love: less strongly emotional, tends to be calmer and more serene. It is also called affectionate love. It involves thinking of the other person as your soul mate or special partner. It is what makes people want to remain each others companions. There may be a physiological, even biochemical difference between the two kinds of love. o People who feel passionately about each other high high levels of phenylethylamine (PEA), a NT. This causes strong emotional feelings. It also produces high intensity or frequency of sexual desire. o Companionate love is not characterized by high levels of PEA. Love and Culture The question of whether love is universal or a product of Western culture has been debated. o Some cultures place more of a value on it than others do. Love Across Time A successful relationship depends on making the transition from passionate to companionate love. A behavioural sign in the decrease in passion can be found in data about frequency of sexual intercourse. Sternbergs Triangle Sternberg (1986): love is composed of three ingredients (passion- largely emotional, intimacy- common core of all relationships, commitment- conscious decision). QUIZ: 1. Passionate love is an aspect of _____. a. Eastern culture b. Western culture c. Both Eastern and Western culture d. Neither of the two 2. Passionate love is to companionate love as _____ love is to _____ love. a. Affectionate, romantic b. Committed, intimate c. Married, single d. Romantic, affectionate 3. People who feel passionately in love have high levels of ______. a. Acetylcholine b. Dopamine c. Epinephrine d. Phenylethelamine 4. In the triangle theory of love, what does companionate love stem from? a. Commitment b. Intimacy c. Passion d. Both a and b Different Types of Relationships Exchange vs. Communal Two different basic types of relationship o Exchange Relationships: based on reciprocity and fairness o Communal Relationships: based on mutual love and concern A difference is whether people keep track or not. Social psychologists say that communal relationships are more mature and desirable than exchange ones. This is only for romantic relationships. Across the broader society, exchange relationships seem more powerful. o Communal societies are more primitive. Attachment Started by John Bowlby and continued in the 1980s. He was influenced by Freud and learning psychologists. o He noticed that children separated from their parents during WWII reacted differently, and he proposed that they would take this behaviour into later life. Types of Attachment: o Bowlbys observations were extended by Philip Shaver to describe adult relationships. They found that people could classify themselves easily, without any long questionnaires. Classifications range from anxious/ambivalent (where they want to be around the other person 24/7 and completely merge with them) to avoidant (where they want to maintain some distance between themselves and the other person). In the middle lie secure attachment individuals (a comfortable balance). o While communal vs. exchange are equal, not all attachment styles are. The secure attachment style produces the best outcomes. The other attachment styles do, however, provide some limited kind of defence mechanisms or ways of coping with painful relationships. Eg: avoidant style is thought to begin when parents neglect their children. Two Dimensions of Attachment?: o Researchers started to move from a single dimension model to a two dimensional attachment theory. 2 dimensions: anxiety (attitudes towards the self) and avoidance (attitudes towards the other). High Anxiety (Negative attitude towards self) Low Avoidance Preoccupied of Fearful avoidant High Avoidance (Positive attitude anxious ambivalent (Negative attitude towards others) Secure Dismissing avoidant towards others) Low Anxiety (Positive attitude towards self) Basically, the avoidance category is divided into 2. o Secure attachment people seem to have the most healthy relationships. o Preoccupied attachment people want more from their partners, want closeness however worry that their partners will see their flaws and abandon them. They view partners are unrealiable and uncommitting. o Dismissing avoidant attachment people have a high opinion of them selves but a lot opinion of others.
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