Feeling butterflies in your stomach, going weak at the knees and getting swept off your feet are just a few of the expectations we harbor when it comes to love. Long-perceived as a mystical and magical fairy tale, we just assume that love never makes sense, it’s almost always confusing, and that the heart simply wants what it wants -- no explanation necessary.
But clinical psychologist Sue Johnson is ready to change that. Her new book "Love Sense" delves into the new scientific research surrounding romantic relationships, and asks us to rethink what the "L" word really means. She joined HuffPost Live host Caitlyn Becker to discuss why love isn’t quite the mystery we’ve always chalked it up to be.
“I think it’s absolutely disastrous for us to keep defining love as a big mystery,” Johnson says. “We need to know about it, we need to know how to shape it. It’s now the basis of our families. Really, the family stands or falls on feelings of affection. ... We are all longing for it, and it’s just kind of not so poetic and fun anymore to define it as slightly out of reach and sort of only magical.”
In order to reap the benefits of love, it might be helpful to label it as something other than love.
“Really what we’re looking at here is the science of bonding, the science of close connection where you really need people,” Johnson explains. “Usually that means parents, maybe sometimes siblings, our mates who are our main bonding figure when we are adults, occasionally a really, really good friend is in there, but this is a bonding relationship.”
To hear more about the science behind the "L" word, watch the full HuffPost Live clip in the video above.