After discussing and exploring the greek loves, we complicate things more with different expectations of love. Love to you may not be the same as love for me. Likewise, what you expect and how you experience love may be different. In "what is love? #3 (yes we are still in #2), we will explore the different expressions of love. But for now, let's take a look at the different expectations and experiences of love.
Sterberg's Triangular Theory of Love. BABAM! Here it is in a picture.
Sterberg postulated that there are three pivotal corners of love. Intimacy (liking), infatuation (passion) and Empty love (commitment/loyalty/obligation).
1) Liking/Intimacy is the attraction to personality or emotional closeness. I like to equate intimacy to connection. Intimate conversations are about connection around a topic so it is easy to grasp that intimacy requires people to feel connected. The best escorts are the ones that provide intimacy without sex. You feel connected and often times that is more than enough to walk away satisfied. This is often associated with storge or philia
2) Infatuation or passion is the desire for the aesthetic feeling, physical form, or some kind of attribute. Anytime you hear desire, think of a passionate want or longing. Feeling sexy is the feeling of being desired and often leads to infatuation. Remember passion is a strong feeling. This is often associated with eros, ludus, and mania.
3) Empty love is the the decision to be committed, the feeling of being obligated, or the choice to be loyal. It is a covenant- a promise or agreement so as long as it is beneficial (loosely defined). It is often tied to storge, pragma, or philia.
Now these three corners meet at intersections and expand on our experiences of love.
When intimacy and infatuation/passion meet without commitment- it is romantic love. This is the experience of feeling close to someone and being attracted to them physically and desiring them. One-night stands f*** buddies/booty-calls fall into this experience.
When passion and commitment meet but lacks intimacy, that is called fatuous love. Fatuous love is the love at first sight kind of love. Or a i am turned on by you and we are friends, but I really feel connected or close to you. This is the love that you would experience and then go tell another friend about instead of telling the person you love. I like you as a friend, I want you and feel strong emotions, but i am not really closely connected with you so I'll go tell my best friend about us.
When Commitment and Intimacy meet without passion- you have companionate love. This is your friend that you are not attracted to kind of love. End of story. We can talk, we will stick together, but I don't like you in that way. Can be associated with philia, storge, or pragma.
Now when all three (intimacy, passion, and commitment) are found in love, we call that consummate love. You can rely on them, you are loyal and commitment (not necessarily mono-amorous), you passionate desire each other, and emotionally close and connected you are in consummate. This is often associated with agape and pragma.
Now this triangular experience is dynamic. meaning that you may go in and out of these expectations or experiences. One day you may feel a desire the next day it is fleeting. One day you may feel close, and the next day detached.
It is important to understand this as your experience of any relationship may not quite reflect the experience of the other person. Know where you stand will help you determine what steps to take in order to get where you want to go. ;)
Simmer on that!!!