What is love? In the 1980s, American psychologist Robert Sternberg developed the “triangular” theory of love to provide an answer. His theory explains that love is an interaction between 3 things: emotional intimacy, passion, and commitment. From this model, Sternberg later created distinctions between the 7 types of love.
If you find yourself between 2 types of love, remember that these classifications aren’t black and white. Some couples move in and out of the categories and evolve to reach consummate love; others might be perfectly happy living as companions or romantic partners. Achieving a certain type of love might be very important to a couple; others might prefer to take a more laid-back approach. It’s all about personal preference.
Empty Love 3:12
Fatuous Love 4:00
Romantic Love 5:18
Companionate Love 6:20
Consummate Love 7:16
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Tres metros sobre el cielo (2010) Mario Casas, Maria Valverde: By Globomedia, https://www.globomedia.es/cine/3-Metros-sobre-el-cielo
Enemy (2013) Jake Gyllenhaal, Melanie Laurent: By Capital Pictures/EAST NEWS, https://www.eastnews.ru/pictures/picture/id/44585516/i/10/t/30
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– Infatuation is the place where romantic love usually begins. It’s that messy stage of crazy feelings and burning passion that makes you feel like you’re the king or queen of the world.
– Liking means you can always be yourself. You don’t have to pretend or hide anything. Here, people are united by common interests, views on life, and the feeling of being understood.
– The word “empty” refers to a lack of emotional intimacy and passion. This type of relationship sometimes appears after a big and intense love that faded over time.
– Fatuous love includes commitment and passion and is familiar to many couples. It exists when 2 people are really attracted to each other and are ready to take the next steps of getting married and sharing responsibilities.
– Romantic love is a combination of passion and emotional intimacy. Many romance movies show couples experiencing the romantic type of love. They show you how it takes 2 people years to find each other, and then they go through a series of problems before finally getting back together at the end.
– Companionate love can be seen in couples who live together, are deeply committed to one another, and treat each other as friends. Companionate love is built on commitment and emotional intimacy.
– Consummate love is also called “complete love” in the Sternberg model. It involves the 3 components of his theory coming together: passion plus emotional intimacy plus commitment.
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