10 "Weird" Reasons People Fall In Love
Picture this. It was a beautiful summer night near the water. He held her close as he gazed into her eyes. She stroked his face before leaning into his kiss. That night, they fell in love. Or did they? While the idea that the couple was destined to fall for each other is enchanting, chances are there are other reasons for human attraction (feelings of falling in love). And some are quite interesting.
As it turns out, the reasons people fall for one another may have less to do with destiny and more to do with biological, psychological, and environmental factors such as attraction, timing, and...owning a dog?
1.Ring by spring. Love forecast.
Is it possible for warm weather (read: springtime) to have an affect on your love life? Some say yes. A recent blog post shared research from neuroscientists who claim that springtime is the best season for a new relationship to bloom. Naturally, as the days get longer, skirts get shorter, meaning not much is left to the imagination in the fashion department. People wear less clothes and thus, sexual attraction/desires increase. Have you ever noticed that more than flowers bloom in the spring? Online dating app, Zoosk, compared data from ten major cities to see how changes in the weather affected their users.
2.Sex, passion, and physical touch.
Listen, you had me at sex. Not that we actually needed science to tell us that sex produces feelings of love, but as it turns out, there actually is science to support this claim. Well, kinda. Our bodies churn out chemical messengers known as pheromones when we are in close proximity to one another. Therefore, physical contact where there is an exchange of bodily fluids such as sweat or saliva is present manufactures these chemicals. Additionally, sex produces oxytocin, commonly referred to as the love hormone during orgasm and replicates feelings of love but is more likely creating an attachment than actual love.
While this may seem obvious, there's actually a more biological reason why kissing increases attraction. Male saliva contains trace amounts of testosterone which can boost the sex drive of a woman. Additionally, evolutionary scientists believe women can detect genetic compounds that are essential for the immune system and will increase their chances of having healthy children. Now if that's not a good reason to spark a makeout session, then I don't know what is.
4.Menstrual cycle (for women).
Did you know that changes in your hormonal levels at different points in your menstrual cycle can trigger certain urges/outcomes? For example, women that are ovulating are rated as being more attractive by men. That's certainly an ego-boost if nothing else, especially when we feel anything but attractive while coping with cramps and excessive water retention. But that's not the only weird side effect of menstruation. A 2012 study found another useful occurrence in women who were strongly bonded to their partner and experienced more intimate physical contact with them during high fertility days of their cycle.
5.The Holy Trinity of Intimacy.
Robert Sternberg's triangular theory of love proposes that love consists of three elements: passion, intimacy, and commitment, with commitment as the foundational basis and passion being the most unstable. Intimacy refers to the closeness between partners with regard to emotional connection, while passion is more aligned with feelings gained through a sexual connection.
The element of commitment is when partners make a decision to "stop looking" for other partners and pursue a relationship with each other. While each component is separate, they can influence each other. For example, having greater intimacy can lead to more commitment and vice versa. Sternberg's theory can be summed up with the idea that a relationship can exist with a combination of any two (or less) elements, but for a consummate love, all three aspects are required.
6.Tug of war.
There's a popular saying that opposites attract, but the Bible says you must be equally yoked. So which one is? Actually, it's both. Communication theorists call this interplay relational dialectics. You can email me to learn more about that, if you're interested, but what it primarily focuses on is how individuals deal with contractions in their relationship. Generally speaking, attraction grows when you have something in common with a person. This can be liking the same type of music or eating similar kinds of food, or it could be something more substantial like having the same values or beliefs.
But relationships also benefit when partners are not too much alike and can offer something new to each other. The most common contradictions in relationships are the dynamics between introverts and extroverts, affectionate and non-affectionate, and clingy versus independent individuals. The key to a successful relationship is to find a happy medium.
People think commitment starts with desire, but it actually begins with necessity. Yes, people commit when you're able to fulfill a need they have. Sometimes it's sexual, emotional, intellectual, even financial. But generally speaking, people stick around when they feel like they have a reason to. I've spoken to hundreds of women who have no problem dating and meeting new men, but when it comes time to take the relationship to the next level and commit to each other, they're left wondering why he walked away.
Experts say there are three things that people consider when deciding to commit to someone: how satisfied they are with their partner or the relationship, the availability of options outside of the relationship, and how much they've already invested into the relationship.
8.Looking like your partner’s parents… Say what, now?
Greek mythology relays the tale of a mythical king, Oedipus, whose tragic demise resulted in him killing his father and marrying his mother. From this tragedy, the world-renown psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud coined "The Oedipus Complex" to describe a child's feelings of desire for his or her opposite-sex parent. Recent studies have latched on to Freud's ideas claiming some folks are attracted to people with similar features as their parents such as skin tone, hair/eye color, and the age range they saw at birth. So if it's any consolation for why your ex's new girlfriend is frumpy-looking like his mom, this might explain why. Sigh.
In 1997, Arthur Aron and a group of psychologists conducted an experiment to see if they could "create" intimacy between couples and ultimately make them fall in love. One study consisted of about 50 strangers, a series of 36 questions followed by a two-minute period of complete silence while looking into each other's eyes. Their experiment resulted in an almost 60 percent success rate with several couples going steady and two successful marriages.
10.If you own a dog.
Several studies have concluded that dogs contribute to social interaction among strangers. A 1992 study by Kelly Ann Rossbach & John P. Wilson showed that the presence of a dog can make a person appear more likable. Research shows that people are more likely to attribute positive characteristics such as being caring, patient, and nurturing to dog-owners. These qualities are commonly cited as reasons people fall in love, thus making them more desirable to date.
Are you a member of our insiders squad? Join us in the xoTribe Members Community today!
Featured image by Shutterstock
- 7 Reasons Men Cheat, Underrated Reasons - xoNecole: Women's ... ›
- 36 Questions That Make You Fall In Love - xoNecole: Women's ... ›
- 7 Reasons Not To Settle In A Relationship - xoNecole: Women's ... ›
- 8 Valid Reasons To Break Off An Engagement - xoNecole: Women's ... ›
Also known as The Real Black Carrie Bradshaw for her relentless love of shoes and emotionally unavailable men, DeJa K. Johnson is unapologetic in her pursuits to find love, happiness, and orgasms. A graduate of UA Little Rock, DeJa earned a Master's degree in Applied Communication with an emphasis on Interpersonal & Romantic relationships. She is also the founder of TheBreakupSpace.com, a safe space for men and women who need help getting over the loss of a romantic relationship. To connect, you can find her on all social media @TheRealBlackCarrieBradshaw or send her an email to love@TheRealBlackCarrieBradshaw.com.
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Many have wondered if one time is ever enough to see Queen Bey. Some argue yes. However, many of us on the opposite end of the spectrum, including myself, would disagree. Beyoncé's "Renaissance World Tour" is a universal yet varying experience for everyone who attends. In the words of Oprah Winfrey, the concert is "transcendent." For millennials, we have over two decades of her catalog that has served as the soundtrack for many of our lives and painted a personal portrait of our most coveted thoughts. Her music provides mental clarity and self-expression by serving as a universal language that has united fans from all walks of life through community, fashion, self-acceptance, and healing.
With a multi-layered approach to her artistry, just as she did on that winter day in December 2013 with the infamous digital drop of her self-titled album, she changed the game again on February 1, 2023, when she announced her world tour in support of Renaissance, her seventh studio album. Her cultural impact set the internet ablaze, with everyone trying to gather their coins, barter for presale codes, and figure out which cities to attend. The group chats were lit, and the Beyhive was stressed trying to get their hands on tickets.
Beyoncé's Renaissance tour stop in L.A.
Photo courtesy of Dontaira Terrell
Unfortunately, I was in that number. As the concert dates passed by and the one in my city drawing near all roads led to disappointment. With time ticking on the day of the Miami show and less than two hours to spare, my wallet bit the bullet, and I purchased three last-minute tickets, costing roughly $700.00 a piece (including fees) for me, my 9-year-old and 16-year-old nieces in Section 121 at the Hard Rock Stadium. With 10 minutes before showtime, we eagerly awaited the Queen to take the stage. A sea of metallic fringes, cowboy hats, disco fans, and western boots were in full effect and filled the entire stadium.
Dontaira with her nieces at Beyoncé's Renaissance tour stop in Miami.
Photo courtesy of Dontaira Terrell
As the lights dimmed, a flood of emotions instantly overtook my body. It continued with each note she belted, along with nearly 50,000 roaring fans. The reverberating sound of the music through the stadium transported me from one era of my life to the next. As a teen girl in her bedroom daydreaming about her first love to blossoming into an unapologetic Black woman who is still on a road of self-discovery while learning to lean into the power anthem of "You won't break my soul." For over two hours, and with each set, I felt joy, love, peace, and a commanderie with fellow concertgoers. It was therapeutic as I danced like no one was watching and sang as if I were alone in my bathroom mirror.
There were no bars held, and I realized at that moment, "Nobody can judge me but me." The "Renaissance World Tour" proved to be so vast, and my Black girl joy was re-invigorated. It was magnetic and liberating, and I had to attend again, but this time, I needed to be up close and personal; I needed to be on the floor. In the days that passed, I watched more social media clips in different cities and asked myself if I would really splurge again to attend another Renaissance show.
Beyoncé's Renaissance tour stop in Miami.
Photo courtesy of Dontaira Terrell
After all, this would be my thirteenth time (maybe more because I lost count) seeing Beyoncé live, whether she was on tour with Destiny's Child, as a solo artist, or doing a live appearance. I contemplated for a while, but it worked itself out on its own. I was gifted two tickets and the next thing I knew, I was off to LA to attend another Renaissance show with floor seats at SoFi Stadium during Beyonce's 42nd birthday weekend! This time, things were different: no kids were allowed. It was adults only this go round.
Although the energy at the Miami and Los Angeles shows was empowering, infectious, and a celebration of life, happiness, and identity, they each provided their own unique experience. However, both concerts were what I needed for my well-being, leaving me with sore feet from dancing the night away, on vocal rest for the next few days from screaming at the top of my lungs, and on an indefinite high on life.
My introduction and love for Beyoncé began in 1996, while my older sister lived in Houston, TX, right before Bey hit the scene in 1998 with "No, No, No" as a budding R&B member. Her evolution twenty-seven years later as an international superstar and into womanhood has been an incredible journey to witness. As Mrs. Carter reminds each of us in the audience every night before the curtain closes, "I want you to remember this moment, where you're standing, who you came with, and take it with you. I hope you feel inspired."
I truly felt inspired, so thank you, Queen Bey. You awakened my inner child, and I will definitely remember these moments and take them with me.
Let’s make things inbox official! Sign up for the xoNecole newsletter for daily love, wellness, career, and exclusive content delivered straight to your inbox.
Feature image by Kevin Mazur/WireImage for Parkwood