In my previous post, I discussed the biological factors around romantic love – specifically surrounding sexual desire and attachment.  In psychology, there are typically three concepts that come to play in romantic love:  Attachment, Sex, and Caregiving.  Today I’m going to discuss how early experiences in attachment can color behaviors in romance.


Attachment has always been primarily known as the bond between an infant and a caregiver – usually a parent.  In the late 80’s, psychologists began to apply this attachment theory to sexual, adult relationships.  The idea put forth was that early experiences with a parental figure help a child develop self-worth, and a series of behavior responses based on the emotional availability of parents and an infant’s feelings of security.  Young children seek closeness to parental figures in times of emotional stress or physical need.  Their early experiences become a model of expected behavior in intimate adult relationships.  When a child seeks closeness of a parental figure, and gets it, there is a reinforcement of availability and support.  “I was scared, I needed Mommy and she was there.  I can rely on Mommy to always be there.

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