Does Eternal Love Exist?

· November 3, 2016

An older man is reading a book to an old woman. It’s about the love of a couple that met in the 1940s: Allie and Noah. They fell in love, but her parents were against her being in a relationship with a boy who did not have many economic resources.

Life separates them, but they never forget one another, until one day they find each other again and build a life together. Those young people in the story are actually the two old people. The man reads the story of their love to his wife, who has lost her memory, each day, to remind her of a love that they will never forget.

This is the story told by the movie “The Notebook,” one of the most romantic and touching movies released in recent years. Seeing something like this makes us wonder if we can manage to have such an intense, sincere, and lasting relationship in a world where many relationships start very quickly and disappear in a few days or months.

It seems like everything is too superficial; it leaves us empty. Where do we find the time necessary to really get to know a person? Why are we so afraid to bear our soul? Relationships may or may not be eternal, but we don’t even give ourselves the time or have the courage to find out.

“But if we never meet again and this is truly goodbye, I know we will see each other again, and maybe the stars will have changed, and we will not only love each other in that time, but for all the times we’ve had before…”

-The Notebook-

Couple With Balloons

Studies on eternal love

Harvard University published a study that concluded that eternal love does exist and there is only one secret: feeling true empathy for the other person. According to therapist Charlotte Pasquier, “For a couple to work out, two people need to walk in the same direction, but not necessarily have the same opinions about everything nor want the same things. They just need to be aware of the other person’s desires.”


According to this study, the secret to lasting love is empathy for the other person. That means that each person mentally and emotionally identifies with the other’s mood. Eternal love is a matter of understanding without judging.

“If you fall, I’ll pick you up, if not, I will lay down with you.”

-Julio Cortázar-

A group of neurochemists from Stony Brook University in New York managed to find evidence that eternal love is possible. The scientists measured the reactions in the brains of a group of volunteer who had just started romantic relationships.

They found that when we see a photo of the person we are in love with, the ventral tegmental area (VTA) of the midbrain reacts. This area of the brain is dedicated to processing dopamine, a neurotransmitter that is responsible for triggering desire.

Reading Each Other's Mind

If the photo was shown to another person, even if it looked like their loved one or an old friend that they had not had a romantic relationship with, the brain remained unchanged. Later, married people (10 women and 7 men) who claimed to still have romantic feelings for their partners were analyzed over many years (approximately 20).

Their brains reactions were measured in the same way and rated on a 7-point scale to analyze the intensity of the love that the volunteers felt for their partners. Well, the minimum intensity registered in this group of volunteers was five points.

The reactions of this group of people were registered in the same area of the brain as in the other group of “recent lovers”: the ventral tegmental area and the striatum. However, there were also differences. While effects were seen in the first group of volunteers in the areas responsible for obsessions and nervous tension, in the second group, the areas affected were those responsible for friendship and maternity.

What makes love last?

Of course there is no magic formula for love to last, but if we want a relationship to be enduring, we will have to make a very significant effort each day. Below, we will show you some keys that are necessary for a relationship to be solid and for it to last.

Similarity

The most enduring relationships are those who share different values, principles, and hobbies. It is not necessary to be identical to your partner, but you do have to have things in common that you can share and enjoy together. It is advisable for there to be a bit of intimacy shared with our partner.

“Because without searching, I keep finding you everywhere, especially when I close my eyes.”

-Julio Cortázar-

Sense of humor

It is very important to learn to see situations with humor and to get rid of the drama in certain situations. Conflicts in relationships can take on a more relaxed form if we use humor, always with respect for the other person.

Mutual admiration

Admiration and the ability to learn things from the other person is one of the aspects that most unites us. It is very positive to express that admiration in different ways and to let the other person know, and for them to share this information as well.

Displays of affection

Do not expect the other person to know you want it. Show it every day, even if it is in the little details, like making them coffee in the morning, giving them flowers, leaving cute notes. It is about taking care of the relationship and the love we feel towards our partner.