Wired from Birth to Connect – The Still Face Experiment

“Love is everything it is cracked up to be. It is really worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, your risk is even greater.” – Erica Jong

The most damaging myth in American culture today is that we must be independent to be happy and healthy; that needing others is a sign of weakness. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, the opposite is true. We are wired from birth to need each other, and love is the mechanism by which we connect.

To most people love has been, and remains still, a mystical elusive emotion open to description but defying definition… “an intoxicating mixture of sex and sentiment that no one can define.” (Marilyn Yalom) But this is no longer the case. Today we know that love is, in actuality, the pinnacle of evolution, the most compelling survival mechanism of the human species. Not because it induces us to mate and reproduce (we do manage to mate without love), but because love drives us to bond emotionally with a precious few who offer us a safe haven from the tumult of life. “Love is our bulwark, designed to provide emotional protection so we can cope with the ups and downs of existence. This drive to emotionally attach is wired into our genes and our bodies. It is as basic to life, health, and happiness as the drives for food, shelter, or sex. We need emotional attachments with a few irreplaceable others to be physically and mentally healthy. We need them to survive. ” — Sue Johnson

That’s right… we are hard-wired to connect to other people. The most successful and well researched approach to couples counseling is called Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy. To learn more about how I can help you create a vibrant, loving relationship, please visit my Couples Counseling page.