My bestfriend and I have been together for more than a year. However, there are times when we feel that our relationship as friends would never last. But on the deepest part of our hearts, we do hope that our friendship would last until the last day of our lives. Having known the Minding Theory of Love gives me an idea of how we could strengthen our relationship as best of friends. The Minding Theory of relationships claims that a variety of “expectations and cognitive patterns” are advantageous to satisfying close relationships (Harvey and Omarzu, 2006, p. 99).
Using this concept, our knowledge about each other and attribution of each other’s behaviors would be enhanced. As Minding Theory promotes relationships based on “knowing, accepting and respecting a partner”, it is therefore important to have an ample of knowledge about each other (Harvey and Omarzu, 2006, p. 99). Sharing of information and getting to know each other day by day is one of the best strategies that would be employed to strengthen our friendship. This way, we could make each other know that one is special, treasured and cared for. Such actions could also prevent misunderstanding, miscommunication and break in our friendship.
On my part, any collected information about my bestfriend would enable me to know his strengths and weaknesses and his likes and dislikes. Not doing the things that could hurt him and helping him to fight with his weaknesses, I think, could make my relationship with him to become stronger. In addition, appreciating him, trusting him and winning his trust, accepting the whole of him, understanding and respecting him, giving and sharing my resources with him, and providing disclosure in our relationship could also help in strengthening our relationship while pursuing continuity and synergy.
Part Two: Exploring Love Through Triangular Theory of Love The Triangular Theory of Love by Sternberg (2006) holds that love could be understood in terms of three components that together could be viewed forming the vertices of triangle: intimacy (top vertex of the triangle); passion (left-hand vertex of the triangle); and decision/commitment (right-hand vertex of the triangle). On top vertex of the triangle, Intimacy in loving relationships refers to feelings of “closeness, connectedness and bondedness” (Sternberg, 2006, p. 185).
It provides the partners the experience of warmth within relationships. On the other left side of the triangle, passion in loving relationship refers to the drives or motivation that lead to physical attraction, romance, sexual consummation and other related events in a relationship. It includes “a state of intense longing” for the union with a partner (Sternberg, 2006, p. 185). Furthermore, on the left side of the triangle, decision/commitment refers to the decision that one loves a certain other, for short term relationships; and to one’s commitment to maintain love, for long-term relationships.
The three components of love interact with each other and determine the kind of love relationship one have for his or her partner. In the absence of the three components, a relationship is identified as non-love. However, if one of the three components exists, it is either an infatuated love or empty love. Infatuated love occurs when the relationship of partners is solely rooted on passion. On the other hand, a relationship that emanates from the decision that one loves another and is committed to that love is known as empty love (Sternberg, 2006).
Meanwhile, a combination of two components of love also differentiates one kind of love to the other. A love relationship that is based on intimacy and passion is classified as romantic love while intimacy and decision/commitment are best associated with compassionate love. And lastly, a relationship that is rooted from passion and decision/commitment, on the absence of intimacy, is known as fatuous love. Nevertheless, the complete mixture of the three components of love – intimacy, passion and decision/commitment – is also possible as such kind of love is distinguished as the consummate love (Sternberg, 2006).
With regard to the three components mentioned, it is perceived that the type of love relationship that an individual have for his or her partner or object of attention is greatly affected by the kind of attachment that he or she holds for the other. As an individual grows older, he or she would develop various forms of attachment for other people around him or her. For example, a child who is not yet familiar with things around him, only lives according to his instinct or to what is dictated to him by the people around him.
The concept of attachment and love is still not innate to the child, thus the type of love he has as of this moment could be identified as non-love. As the child grows, he would develop a feeling of attachment to other people, most probably to his family. Considering Sternberg’s Triangular Theory of Love, forms of attachment which are likely to sprout on the child’s emotion are intimacy and commitment. Such forms of attachment is associated with compassionate love. Once he becomes a teenager, he might experience passion toward his opposite sex or come into decision of loving another person who is not his relative.
On this stage, he is either experiencing infatuated love or empty love. Infatuated love is associated with passion while empty love emanates from a decision to love other person. As he matures, he might develop or experience another kind of love which is either a romantic love or a fatuous love. Romantic love involves intimacy and passion while fatuous love is rooted from passion and decision/commitment. When the partners finally take the bow of marriage, it only means that they have developed their love relationship into a complete form of love, which is consummate love.
Consummate love involves intimacy, passion and commitment. Looking at the above example, we could conclude that the closer or stronger a relationship is, more developed feelings of attachment and love is being experienced by an individual. The forms of attachment, therefore, affect the type of love relationship an individual holds for the other person. Moreover, the amount of love and the balance of love also affects the relationship of partners such that the greater the amount of love being shared with a partner, the greater the area of the love triangle and the more stable the love relationship will be.
On the other hand, the balance of love determines the shape of the love triangle wherein in a love relationship where partners have balanced their feelings of intimacy, passion and decision/commitment, the shape of the love triangle is also balanced such that an equilateral triangle is identified. A love relationship where intimacy and commitment have equal measurement yet passion is larger than the two is likely to have an obtuse love triangle and so forth.
In general, an individual who had early experiences of love is likely to result in consummate love, which is recognized as an almost perfect kind of love, because his or her experiences of love relationships would enable him or her to develop various feelings of attachments, more love minding and better or improved love relationships. References Harvey, J. H. And Omarzu, J. (2006). Minding the close relationship: a theory of relationship enhancement. United States: Cambridge University Press. Sternberg, R. J. (2006). A Duplex Theory of Love. In The New Psychology of Love by Robert J.