When we fall in love, we release a chemical cocktail that takes over and makes us kick love into high speed. Unless you’re a Kardashian, (they release an ass-chemical that gets them another season on E!) One of the chemicals released when you’re in love–in your “love cocktail” is oxytocin, not to get it confused with the drug, Oxycodone –although the sensation in both are the same: euphoric, happy, and bond-forming. Holding hands has also been linked to helping people destress.
Research shows that our brain produces more oxytocin early in the dating phase when experiencing physical contact like holding hands, kissing, and caressing because it’s needed in order to build a love-bond. But the brain is wired to maintain a balance, so about six months to two years of being with the same person–it decreases the levels of oxytocin. The brain does this, not just to torture us, but to self-preserve. The body can’t function properly always skipping heartbeats, butterflies in the tummy, or hearing symphonies when they say your name.
The body starts to protest, “I can’t do this anymore!” And when this happens, you freak out, thinking, there are no more sparks, he no longer loves me and question if your relationship is destined to fail.
But you can start to create more oxytocin (yeah, even in public) by simply increasing the amount of physical touch with your partner. Simple kisses on the neck, holding hands, a quick hug will start to produce more oxytocin which increases your love-bond. It’s not magic, one kiss doesn’t equal 1mg of oxytocin, it’s a build up–so make sure you give it some time. I actually have been experimenting with Big Daddy for the last three days and I was shocked to see the results. He’s now calling me before he goes to work and we wake up early just to talk. It’s been two years for us, and I like the direction we’re headed in.
Coincidentally, Oxytocin is released when mothers give birth and that’s another reason doctors recommend breast-feeding because of the high levels of oxytocin present that will quickly bond mother and child. This must explain the woman who loves in a shoe with all those kids, she must have breastfed.
Key Takeaway: Oxytocin increases the love-bond. If you feel you are loosing the connection with your partner, try some physical contact.