The Three Types of Love


Love is a complex emotion that involves changes in brain chemicals and impacts our social relationships. It can warm your heart, captivate your soul, or leave you feeling broken and disappointed. It is so powerful that it has inspired poets, philosophers and authors through the ages and continues to be one of the most common subjects for songs and movies. It also inspires scientists, researchers in fields such as psychology and neuroscience.

People use the word love to describe a variety of emotions and behaviors, from adoration for non-human animals to commitment to principles or religious beliefs. However, we often don’t agree on what “love” actually means; different people may have very different definitions of love.

In the 20th century, psychologists started to scientifically study love, and they found that it’s a very complex phenomenon with many different types of love. They identified three broad components of love, which we can view as the vertices of a triangle: intimacy, passion and commitment.

The intimacy component of love is characterized by emotional closeness and trust. The passion component relates to feelings of attraction and arousal, which can be sexual in nature. The commitment component of love is characterized by a desire to stay together for the long term. It can include a sense of obligation and selflessness, as well as a need for stability. Many people have a mixture of these three love styles. They may experience intimacy, passion and a sense of commitment in their romantic relationships but also have a deeper connection to family members or friends.