What Is the "Cuddle Hormone" and How Do I Get It Back In My Relationship?
Submitted by Marilyn Stevens, LCSW, of ConnectedPairs .
When a romantic connection happens, have you ever wondered why it is called chemistry? Well, actually there is chemistry involved. Research indicates a specific hormone is released while a person is "in love.”
Oxytocin is often referred to as the “cuddle hormone” and has a large role in promoting enduring friendships, marriages, and relationships.
When chemistry is at its height, couples find it easy to show appreciation, share deep thoughts, do thoughtful things, dream, admire, share and more. Couples live in a bubble, thinking only of each other. However, within six months to two years, when couples begin to deal with careers, kids, bills and other stresses, the hormone decreases and it takes more than a hormone to keep the connection strong.
So, what’s a couple to do when the chemistry fades?
1. Learn how to listen. When the chemistry fades, the focus on your partner is no longer instinctive, and couples need to remember that 50% of communication is listening. During conversations on challenging topics, you begin to focus what you are going to say next and miss hearing what the other person is trying to say. So, when trying to communicate something important, remember these tips.
Set aside uninterrupted time and undivided attention. Be physically close and maintain eye contact while talking. With a calm tone, repeat back what you heard to make sure you heard correctly. It may seem unnecessary, but a few seconds of listening can save hours of misunderstanding.
2. Learn to love your partner in their love language. In the book "Five Love Languages," Gary Chapman identifies five ways people like to be loved and cared about.
When the chemistry is high, we use all these “love languages” naturally, but in time we tend to fall back to expressing love in our own primary love language. We are often attracted to someone with a different love language and are tempted to love our partner the way we like to be loved, and vice versa.
Learning your partner's “love language” and loving them using their “love language” helps them feel cared about. For example, many men spend time and money providing for their partner, when appreciation, quality time and acts of service would mean more. Many women shed a lot of tears trying to convince their man to talk about their feelings, when appreciation / respect, quality time or physical touch would mean much more to their partner.
How do you know what your partner's love language is?
The "Five Love Languages" book has an inventory to help you identify your partner's love language. Another way is to observe your partner; what they do for others is usually what makes them happy.
3. Greet one another affectionately the first five minutes when reuniting at the end of the day. Hugs and affection raise the oxyitocin hormone. When life becomes busy with kids, bills, schedules, meals, etc.; the first few minutes together after a busy day set the stage for the rest of the evening.
4. Make monthly dates a priority. Parenting preschoolers and adolescents are the most stressful times for marriages. The time and energy absorbed caring for children at these ages can sap your relationship of energy, especially for sex. Remember, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Keep the dream of your journey together alive by spending time alone and setting goals for the future, while enjoying and meeting the needs of child rearing.
5. Be proactive in maintaining your relationship. Have a plan to maintain your relationship so it will last a lifetime. Don’t wait until your relationship is in the “emergency room” to enlist professional assistance. Occasional checkups or even “minor surgery” beats getting to the “emergency room” too late.
Submitted by Springfield Moms sponsor Marilyn Stevens, LCSW. For more information on click the link: ConnectedPairs .
73.0 F (22.8 C)
Pressure : 1011.7 mb
Humidity : 79 %
Wind : Southeast at 9.2 MPH (8 KT)
What's on FOX Illinois Full Schedule
FOX News Sunday with
The Chris Matthews Show
To Be Announced