The Three Loves Theory • Helen Fisher

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Ever heard about 3 Loves Theory?
The Three Loves Theory of Helen Fisher:
January 16, 2021

Today we are going to talk a bit about the famous Three Loves Theory of Helen Fisher, the American biological anthropologist, human behavior researcher and self-help author.

Before we get into that Three Loves Theory what else do we know about the scientist?

According to Wikipedia Helen Fisher said that when she began researching for her dissertation, she considered the one thing all humans have in common – their reproductive strategies.

She is now the most referenced scholar in the love research community.

In 2005, she was hired by to help build, which used her research and experience to create both hormone-based and personality-based matching systems.

She was one of the main speakers at the TED conference 2006 (Why we love, why we cheat), at the 2008 (The brain in love) and at the 2016 TED Conference (Technology hasn't changed love. Here's why).

On January 30, 2009, she was featured in an ABC News 20/20 special, Why Him? Why Her? The Science of Seduction, where she discussed her most recent research on brain chemistry and romantic love.

She appears in the 2014 documentary film about heart-break and loneliness, entitled Sleepless in New York and the 2017 PBS Nova special on computerized dating, 'How to Find Love Online'.

The Three Loves Theory | Helen Fisher

In Helen Fisher's book, Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love she proposed that humanity has evolved three core brain systems for mating and reproduction:

1. Lust – the sex drive or libido, also described as borogodó or infatuation.
2. Attraction – early stage intense romantic love.
3. Attachment or Commitment – deep feelings of union with a long term partner.

How this can happen and what does it means?

Stage 1

Lust or Infatuation is driven by the desire for sexual gratification and the sex hormones testosterone (mostly for men) and estrogen (for women).

It’s instantaneous; it comes from the reptilian brain and is pure, instinctual reproduction and physical attracting to the object of your affection.

You obsess about them, dream about them and can’t keep yourself away from them.

Typically, the infatuation phase lasts for around six months to a year.

So Lust or Infatuation is different than the long lasting love we most aim and definately is different from Attraction and Attachment.

Second Stage
The law of ATTRACTION:

This is the love-struck phase, the passionate but also romantic kind of love.
Passion makes two people stay up until 4AM together talking, craving for each other and wanting to spend every hour of every day together.

Romance in love brings some of life's most wonderful experiences.
Romantic love has inspired poets for centuries and been the subject of plays, songs, movies and any other creative or artistic endeavor you can think of.

But that can’t be the whole story:
Love relationships go through ups and downs, love is often accompanied by jealousy, erratic behavior, and irrationality, along with a host of other less-than-positive emotions and moods.

Stage 3

Eventually, romance fades away and we are left with a stable, identity-level commitment to someone.

This is what takes over after the attraction stage, if a relationship is going to last, accompanied in humans by feelings of calm, comfort, and emotional union with a mate.

And this is what we call Mature Love.

Mature love is the kind of devotion found in long-term relationships and successful marriages and seems to make coexistence easier.

The other person is now such a major part of our life that we struggle to imagine life without them.

Growing old together can make you a better person and can help you learn from your experiences, develop strong bonds and accept your weaknesses.

Is this the kind of Love you are looking for?

Reviews: "If you want flashes and particular experiences of romantic love, read novels. If you want to understand this central quality of human nature to its roots, read Why We Love."
— Edward O. Wilson

Lily's Tips: Having chemistry with someone might be the basis of a strong relationship or a good romance but isn't necessarily the proof that this relationship is going to last.
Even if through the years of our lives we might experience some loves well remembered (maybe for different reasons each one), they rarely last forever or till death do us apart.
Helen Fisher speaks in more scientific way about the three types or stages of love and helps us understand why and how human beings fall in love.
In "Taking Control of Passion" research chapter of her book Why We Love: The Nature and Chemistry of Romantic Love - Fisher sets forth some very useful and practical suggestions how to make your love relationship last and how to find peace of mind and inner calm through it.

Send me your comments and thoughts about Helen Fisher's Three Loves Theory here.


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