Falling in love is full of heart-stopping, giddy moments. You might find it difficult to eat or sleep because all you can do is think about them. It turns out it’s not just you! There are dramatic chemical changes in the brain when you fall head-over-heels for someone. Being love-sick is no joke, so here are 10 signs that show you are truly, madly, deeply in love.
1. You obsessively think about them.
When you first fall in love, all you can do is think about them. What are they doing now? When will you see them next? Will they text back?!
That’s because you’re receiving a high release of dopamine (your feel-good hormones), and it has the same effects as taking cocaine. No wonder your other half becomes so addictive!
Being in love also changes your serotonin levels which can cause obsessive behavior. A 2012 study found that the participants in love spend 65% of their day thinking about their one and only.
2. You want to spend time together.
Yes, you enjoy their company, but the chemical changes in your brain have you hooked on spending time together.
Your body craves a hit of dopamine, which you get in high doses when you see each other. Just like chocolate and exercise, falling in love gives you a high.
3. You feel clingy.
‘Clinginess’ is often seen as bad, but it’s crucial for social evolution. People who wander off alone are less likely to survive in the wilderness, so when you check on your partners’ whereabouts, it increases their safety.
It’s perfectly normal to feel emotionally attached to your partner. However, be sure not to mix genuine concern and compassion with someone controlling.
4. You enjoy getting physical.
Although sex isn’t the only thing in a relationship, it’s understandable that the more you have sex, the more you want it. That’s because the chemical oxytocin creates bonding and social intimacy.
Considering couples tend to ‘get down to it’ more often in the early stages of their relationship, it comes as no surprise that you enjoy getting physical together when you first fall in love.
5. You’re constantly distracted.
Studies show that your cognitive function is impaired when you fall in love, and MRI scans indicate that some brain regions ‘deactivate.’ The result is a reduction in focus and concentration levels. The energy you receive from increases in dopamine can also make it hard to sleep and even eat.
Checking your emails and getting a good night’s sleep just became even harder!
6. You want to try new things with them.
It’s normal on a first date to compromise or do activities your partner enjoys because you care. That’s because trying something new with them creates a unique bonding experience. Couples are also more satisfied with their relationships when trying different activities. So go ahead, and enjoy snowboarding! It’s something you might never have tried without your other half.
7. You adore their individuality.
Maybe you have a type, but perhaps that type is also someone who’s a bit of a clutz and adores horror movies. What might have begun as an obvious physical attraction can deepen into an emotional attraction, and you start to notice their uniqueness. Everybody prefers different quirks and no two people are the same. So when you get to know someone better, you find that their imperfections are what makes them perfect.
8. You want what’s best for them.
‘Compassionate love’ develops after passionate love has had its time in the limelight. You can still feel passion for each other, but there is also a deep level of trust, commitment, and intimacy. You share every aspect of your life, and you want what’s best for them. Whether that’s supporting them if they’re going to go back to school or making them a coffee in the morning, you only have their best interests at heart.
9. Your personality traits complement each other.
‘Opposites attract’ is a common saying in relationships and for a good reason. You are initially drawn to someone different because they are new, exciting, and intriguing. Their actions and responses may contrast your thinking and increase your empathy for other personality traits. Maybe you’re excitable and fiery, while your partner is calm and grounded. Often you’re drawn to each other because the other person balances you out.
If your values and goals align, then your opposite traits hold the potential for a long-lasting and loving relationship.
10. When you think of the future, they’re in it.
When those initial serotonin cravings wear off, you return to your normal baseline levels. However, that doesn’t mean your love for them goes away! As your serotonin levels settle down, oxytocin (the love hormone) increases. It’s a hormone associated with wanting a long-term relationship.
Now your love hormones are on the rise, you start to feel bonded and trust your partner. That’s means you feel secure imagining them as a part of your future.
Remember, love, happens in varying degrees. Some of us dive in head first, whereas others feel it slowly and then all at once. Although being in love is a bumpy ride, everyone knows it’s worth the journey.