Eye Contact and rekindling love
It is one thing to fight, well, and something else all together to love well.
Rekindle the fire now, or even before, it starts to grow dim.
Lust is at a distance, love is up close.
Don’t confuse the two, and don’t depend on lust to rekindle romance. This is a common mistake.
The reason we feel like strangers, might be that there’s a sense of unfamiliarity.
What would it take to have Love up close?
The main objective of the amygdala is that we not be killed. After that it is invested in perpetuating the species. We detect the potential for lust.
If someone is too different, it repels our amygdala. If they are too unfamiliar, it is threatening - just the right amount of “strangerness”spices things up.
Romantic love must pass muster with both our primitives (amygdala)and our ambassadors (hippocampus).
Lust only has to pass muster with our primitives.
Person looks quite different up-close than at a distance -the ventral visual stream is reserved for people or objects deemed safe, and those being closely observed.
The sense of smell also engages in close proximity.
We can smell more subtle scents produced by the neuroendocrine system, that suggest friendliness, sexual arousal, fear, and even dislike. We may engage in brief or sustained touch.
When you gaze into your partner’s eyes, you can see not only his or her essence, but the entire play of the nervous system.
You can witness the live, exciting, and rapidly changing inner landscape of emotion, energy, and reality that belongs to, and defines your partner.
The eyes seem miraculously immune to aging.
As long as we are mentally and emotionally healthy, they remain beautiful, vibrant, and vital.
A few minutes of sustained, eye gazing can lead to relaxation, a sense of safety, and full here, and now engagement. Daniel Stern terms this “moments of meeting.”
People with avoidant and anxious attachment styles have trouble up close.
They may not pick up important cues from their partner, or simply not pick them up quickly enough, or may not know how to quickly fix misattuned moments.
The avoidant style tends to prefer gazing inwardly or distantly. Many “islands” did not experience lots of physical contact as children, or did not receive gazing into their eyes. The contact they did experience may have been overly intrusive or misattuned.
There might be an aversion at being what they perceive as too close. This aversion can include not only gazing into the eyes, but the senses of smell, taste, and touch.
They may feel irritated and even harassed by the attempt to get near or maintain close physical contact.
They may be ashamed of their aversion to touch and they might conceal it with avoidance, excuses, withdrawal, or anger.
With anxious attachment, that style tends to be comfortable with physical proximity for long durations.
With anxious attachment, there is not an aversive reaction unless there was physical or sexual trauma and then there’s simultaneous desire and aversion.
Because the anxious style craves close contact, they can appear overly intrusive, even threatening to their partner, if their partner is an island.
The person with the anxious attachment style may not be aware of the impact on their partner, so might not try to correct This.
Anxious attachment style tends to have experienced lots of physical contact as children and they often report memories of a parent gazing into their eyes.
It can be attractive and seductive to the avoidant style, during courtship.
Once the relationship is committed, the person with anxious style can begin to perceive threats of rejection, withdrawal, or punishment, whether real or imagined. The overly sensitized anticipation of rejection may result in them first rejecting their partner.
The amount of stress we have can be staggering. How much energy have you expended adapting to life’s various stresses?
What is the price that we pay for the adaptations required of us throughout life? (This is called allostatic load)
Cardiovascular, autoimmune, inflammatory, and metabolic systems are involved -we can develop illness in any or all of these systems heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, fibromyalgia, are common.
Our relationships can influence this significantly. It can make it better. It can make it worse.