Are you watching Recovery Road yet? To recap, but not give too much away, the most recent episode deals with Wes’s past, i.e. his relationship with ex-girlfriend, Harper. They were addicts together, they became sober together, but at some point along the way she relapsed. The bulk of the episode follows Wes, Craig and Maddie on their unplanned field trip to try and get Harper back into rehab. And all of the drama got us thinking about RELATIONSHIPS!!
The people closest to us naturally have an incredible amount of influence in our lives. And when it comes to romantic relationships (or even just a crush, depending on how bad it is), it’s a whole other level.
Have you ever tried to change yourself, or done something that wasn’t really you in the hopes of winning someone over? Maybe just a little? It’s OK, most people have. It’s a part of growing up. We’re all trying figure out who we are, and that means trying on different personas, and trying out different relationships. Something’s a bad fit? We learn from it and move on, right? Right.
But hold on a sec. We all have that friend who gets totally sucked in, and loses their sense of self to every new relationship. Maybe you’re that friend? It can happen to the best of us at one time or another.
There’s a legit reason that love has been compared to drugs about a million times by poets, songwriters and meme makers alike. We say one is “under the influence” of drugs because of the changes and alterations that take place in the brain. Well, guess what. Love causes some interesting changes too.
“It’s like they’re all mixed up together in my brain. Sex, drugs, love, alcohol. It’s hard to figure out where one starts, and the other one stops. I guess they kind of feel the same, don’t they? Love? Drugs?” – Wes
The feeling of love is associated with the hormone oxytocin, and as we all know, hormones are to blame for everything. True fact. In scientific studies, oxytocin has been shown to promote in-group bias in decision-making. Translation: It can promote conformity. This is why some people seem to lose themselves in a relationship.
But as we’re always quick to point out, influence can be negative or a positive. And this is just as true when it comes to love, or at least what gets called love, as with anything else. Your hormones don’t know the difference, which is why someone wiser than us must have once said to love with your heart AND your head.