Is it actually real?
Chemistry is a killer. Let's face it: the minute your lips lock, the super glue holding you together is cemented into place and you're hooked. This always happens. Your body makes sure you don't miss each other.
So what's the problem? Only a fraction of these hot and heavy relationships have any staying power. Some experts guess that 80 percent of "chemistry-driven" relationships fail in less than three months.
According to Psychology Today, "Each couple that engages in love at first sight believes that their passionate feelings for one another will overcome the steep odds against a whimsical union actually providing a lifetime of personal fulfillment for each partner."
Scientists can now measure the brain chemicals that collide with each other, creating an addictive cocktail that controls you when sexual chemistry is ignited. Addictive? You bet. The areas of the brain that light up when cocaine hits the bloodstream are the exact same areas that light up when the chemicals of love and attraction are released.
You're addicted to love — literally.
Do people get tired of each other? Why does the sizzle fizzle out? Once more, can you avoid the fizzlers right away so you can get on to the happily ever after kind of love? Are there signs that love is true in the first few passionate days? Is there love at first sight?
Here are five signs that your new guy could be the real deal (in spite of the chemistry):
1. He treats restaurant staff kindly.
No, I'm not talking about manners... well, not eating habits anyway. A wise woman once told me, "Watch how your man treats waitresses. You will see much about his character." Kindness and generosity to blue and pink collar workers is a genuine trait not easy to fake.
2. He has a great relationship with his female family members.
How does he treat his mom? Sisters? Ex? When I met my husband (my second, I met him at age 52) he still took his ex-mother-in-law for outings away from her rehab home once a month, even though he had been divorced for years. He treats me with old-fashioned chivalry to this day and it's one of the things I love the best about him.
3. He's busy and fulfilled with a productive hobby or career.
If you fall for a guy who's on fire about his own life and still takes time to prioritize you, that's a great sign. The Universe may be able to create happily ever afters with broke, unemployed guys; after all, nothing is impossible. But do you really want that? Chemistry with a man with no income may be hot but is rarely the real deal.
4. He's not your type.
Countless love at first sighters — the couples that claimed they knew very early on that their one was the one — say the same thing: "We met in the most surprising way. I never expected to be with someone like him. He's not my type at all." When you're attracted to someone outside your "type," pay attention.
5. You're still into him two to three months down the line.
Sometime in the two-to-three-month range, take a reading of your relationship. How hot is the chemistry? Has it changed for either one of you? If you guys are cooling off, here's what to check: How fascinated are you with each other? You want to watch for signs that he's "into you" outside of sexual attraction.
Curiosity and fascination are two powerful indicators that this is the real deal, especially when the first rushes of chemistry start to pale. Crushes always melt you in the beginning and then break your heart in the end. In between crush and heartbreak, there are a lot of experiences waiting for you. Love at first sight experiences can rock your world and some are the real deal.
If you're in the midst of that roller coaster ride right now, buckle your seatbelt and hang on, have fun and enjoy how it unfolds. There really is nothing like a mind-numbing crush. Just check in at that two-to-three-month point and be honest with what's happening. If he's still into you, that's the best sign of all.
Catherine Behan is a Dating, Sex and Intimacy Coach practicing in San Diego, CA. For a free 20 minute chat to explore your dating style or lack thereof, click here.
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