I don't love you anymore.
The science behind falling out of love.

FALLING OUT OF LOVE: THE BRAIN EXPLAINS IT.

ASANTEWAA BEATRICE
ASANTEWAA BEATRICE
‌‌Do you remember the last time you ran into someone you find attractive? Did you realize the instance change of your body? Maybe you didn't take note of that, let me remind you. You stammered in your greetings, your palms started sweating, your heart was beating faster than usual, you uttered something incredibly crazy and all you could ask was " is that just me?"‌‌Do you remember?‌‌It's no surprise that you ask whether it was you. Because that wasn't you. It was hormones arising from your brain.

Love is a beautiful thing everyone wants to experience, and when It comes to the person you want to be in love with, science has established several systems called neurotransmitters responsible for that. You can never fall in love without the combination of these chemicals in the body.

Huh, does that mean those who don't love lack neurotransmitters?‌‌ You will find out the answer at the end of the story. But what are neurotransmitters?

What are neurotransmitters?

NEUROTRANSMITTERS.‌‌

Neurotransmitters are the body’s chemical messengers. Their job is to be used by the nervous system to communicate messages between neurons and muscles.‌‌ Neurotransmitters influence a neuron in one of three ways: excitatory, inhibitory, and modulatory.‌‌

Excitatory neurotransmitters;  facilitate a target cell to take action. For example, Acetylcholine is one of the excitatory neurotransmitters that control heartbeat, triggers muscle contraction and brain function.‌‌

Inhibitory neurotransmitters; reduce the opportunities of the target cell transferring action. In some instances, these neurotransmitters have a relaxation-like fallout. An example of an inhibitory neurotransmitter is the love hormone called oxytocin.‌‌

Modulatory neurotransmitters; can send messages to many neurons at the same time. Examples are dopamine and serotonin responsible for regulating mood and behavior.‌‌

So, the brain needs neurotransmitters to regulate many physical and psychological functions, and control body organs. Regardless, all these hormones play a role in falling in love and falling out of love.‌‌
But how does it happen?
Falling in love, how does it happen?

FALLEN IN LOVE, HOW DOES IT HAPPEN?‌‌

Naturally, our bodies react to changes when we fall in love. Activities such as kissing, cuddling, and having sex increase the hormone oxytocin, resulting in strong feelings of intimacy, understanding, and bonding with the opposite sex.‌‌ Interestingly, at every beginning of a relationship, a serotonin-a hormone that causes obsessive thought and anxiety normalizes and makes you feel good with your partner. Unfortunately, the impact of serotonin on relationships largely depends on gender. For men, serotonin levels decrease in response to a romantic relationship, while women experience a significant increase in serotonin.‌‌

So, just as your brain changes when you fall in love, it does the same when you fall out of it.

What makes you not love someone again?

Falling out of love is a process of missing habits and connections of adjusting hormones and neurotransmitters, and of course changing attitudes.

The brain in love happens on a major reward center called the "nucleus accumbens" fused to the frontal cortex to generate positive feelings and has a lessened relation to the fear center of the brain called the amygdala.

‌‌Now, the brain ceases to produce the positivity-inducing chemical called dopamine when your feelings towards a sweetheart begin to fade away.

The reward centers of the brain that release dopamine and cause pleasure rewire and make you unhappy and not feel good when you are around your partner.‌‌Also, while your brain is no more releasing dopamine, serotonin similarly decreases. Although there is now data that when you're madly in love, the dopamine system is more and more activated, and the serotonin system is less activated. Moreover, low serotonin causes all kinds of things, unstable moods, anxiety, depression, memory issues, and trouble sleeping. And these low levels are found in people deeply in love and people falling out of love.‌‌

Hum, if that's the case, what makes both parties jealous in a relationship? Is there scientific evidence to it?
Causes of jealousy in relationship

Yes, generally, jealousy refers to feelings of insecurity, fear, anxiety, and concerns over a proximate lack of protection. And we know that low levels of serotonin cause fear and anxiety between people deeply in love.‌‌ Don't forget that the impact of serotonin depends on gender. So there might not be an equal proportion of jealousy between the two lovers.‌‌ From the story, we might say that men have higher levels of jealousy as compared to women because of the drastic decrease of serotonin after having sex with the partner he so loves and desires at the start of the relationship. But, for women, serotonin normalizes after having sex with their partner. They feel attached to their partner and feel less anxious.

‌‌Does this mean they don't feel jealous?
‌‌Not at all, unfortunately, the oxytocin level of women rises to the brim after sex regardless of oxytocin being linked to trust, liberality, and empathy, Oxytocin plays a role in jealousy.
The lateral septum

Oxytocin has been discovered to strengthen social memory in one particular area of the brain called the lateral septum. This lateral septum has the highest oxytocin level and receptors in the brain of humans and all species. However, the lateral septum is involved in stress and emotional responses. So, the lateral septum has been the route oxytocin uses to develop fear and anxiety.‌‌

This is how it happens.

Oxytocin is two edges Sword, and it largely depends on the social context. For instance, If a known experience is negative or embarrassing, the hormone triggers a part of the brain that intensifies the memory that increases the susceptibility to feeling frightened and uncomfortable even in response to future negative events.‌‌ At this point, the oxytocin triggers a vital signaling molecule called extracellular signal-regulated kinases(ERK) that enhances fear, a sort of belief, by boosting the brain's fear pathways.‌‌ So, is the fear makes you feel jealous of your partner spending time with a member of the opposite sex.

‌‌At the bottom line, is there a sort of “formula” for love?‌‌

Regardless, it looks like love works in headway, and there are countless qualms left unanswered. But, as we’ve understood by now, it’s not only the hormone aspect of the love that’s confounded.‌‌ Love can be both the fortunate and awful thing for you – it can be the alarm that wakes you up in the morning, or what compels you never want to revive again.‌‌ However, I can not define “love” for you if I keep you here for another eight pages. But, l can say that "love is you".

REFERENCES

1. "Unlocking the Love Code | Psychology Today" Retrieved from  https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/food-body-love/202202/unlocking-the-love-code

2. "Love and the Brain | Harvard Medical School" Retrieved from https://hms.harvard.edu/news-events/publications-archive/brain/love-brain

3.  "Love, Actually: The science behind lust, attraction, and companionship - Science in the News" Retrieved from https://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2017/love-actually-science-behind-lust-attraction-companionship/

Biochemistry

ASANTEWAA BEATRICE

I am an artless lady who seeks to improve the health care of children in deprived areas with little knowledge l have. I love to write, motivate, and inspire people with academic challenges.