But to Fredrickson, these numbers reveal a "worldwide collapse of imagination," as she writes in her book. "Thinking of love purely as romance or commitment that you share with one special person—as it appears most on earth do—surely limits the health and happiness you derive" from love.
Dr. Frederickson's research is flawed. Her direct experiments were conducted on a population that was overly homogenous and not representative of the diversity of human pairings. As is the case in a lot of academic psych research this appears to have been caused by an over-reliance on student volunteers. Reading summaries of her research observations is like watching an episode How I met your mother; some of the subjects seem to have walked right off the TV. It is very hard to find everlasting love between hedonistic self centered late adolescent kids. They lack that interior smile and confidence that comes from a more mature individual.
Another criticism is that her research focuses too much on how couples meet short term physical needs. We can learn nothing from cuddles in the backseat, or 5 minute thrills. Everlasting love is only observed in couples who don't constantly think about tomorrow or next week. Those couples are able to develop a deep friendship and god(dess) like intimacy with their partner. The disposable emotions generated by oxytocin and mirror neurons are a notch on the bedpost. They are not indicators of an everlasting love. Finally her findings are contrary to established convention. Extraordinary claims, require extraordinary evidence. When we push and pull at her writings, the seams burst open.
My own decades of research has shown time and again that there is everlasting love. It is precious and worth waiting for. Don't get bitter if you can't find it quickly in your own research. Just wait for it, give it some time.
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