Love May Last, Even When Lovers Part

Romantic love lingers long after lovers say good-bye, according to a study released just in time for Valentine's Day. Couples break up because of decreased levels of satisfaction in the relationship -- not because they stop loving each other.

The researcher found that "romantic partners in stable relationships perceive that their love, commitment, and satisfaction increase over time. The researcher then examined the strengths and weaknesses of the 60 relationships that failed.

These couples did not end their relationships because of the disappearance of love, but because of a dissatisfaction or unhappiness that develops, which may cause love to stop growing.

The researcher also notes that among couples who separated, the perception that love had stopped increasing (or was decreasing) was more predictive than actual scores on love and related phenomena.

Even after the break-up, these individuals told the researcher that their love for their ex-partner remained strong, even if their commitment to the relationship had faltered.

The researcher concludes that while love may be forever, relationships can have definite lifespans. Love does tend to grow, but loving each other may not prevent break-up

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology February 1999;76:46-53.

Dr. Mercola's Comment:

I thought since this newsletter was being distributed on Valentine’s Day, it is good to lead with a story such as this.

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