love and its kinds

Love & its kinds

Love & its kinds

SM Atiqur Rahman

The answer to the question of human existence is love. Freud said that, there is a sexual desire behind love. Love is kind of selfish.But Erich Fromm did not accept it. According to him, love is all about caring and giving.

Actually, every individual has a different perspective on love. Maybe someone not involved physically because of love or maybe someone fell in love because of physical necessity. So the main goal of the relationship is to be intimate to each other.

Intimacy ends loneliness. This intimacy comes in a few steps. A cognitive or a unity of thoughts and emotion is created. It can also be said to be emotionally depended. At this level, they accept their taste, likes and dislikes and interacts with each other. It turns out that sub-consciously you are using the same words which your partner uses and some of your partner behaviors are being carried on too.

Then there is an emotional level of love; the mutual exchange of emotions. Emotion is aerial. The body makes these aerial emotions touchable. A touch of love is not meant for sex always. It is called Non-Sexual Affective Touch. Holding hands, hugging etc. are all non-sexual affective touches. When love goes in this way, sexual intercourse makes it fulfill for physical touch.

The perfect love or consummate love comes after intimacy. So the episodes of intimacy are cognitive sharing, emotional or effective sharing, and physical sharing. And this physical sharing has two episodes too: non-sexual and sexual. Thus the mind and body get involved in love. But it does not have to be started with the mind always. The body can make the first move too. So only then we can name it love when the two change their behavior and expectations depending on each other and their intimacy grows. Intimacy begins when the two feel connected.

So the question remains what is love? Is it an intense emotion or the practice of continuous intimacy or the promise of being together in happiness and in trouble? The one, who fell in love at first sight, knows intense emotion and passion. These emotions, feeling a great attraction towards their love, work as inspiration in the mind. The person wants to meet his/her love beyond all the obstacles for this reason. The love that is based on only passion is called infatuation. This infatuation is different from sexual desire. Sexual desire or lust invokes a desire for sexual gratification – it is like seeing a sexually provocative picture or reading something. But for infatuation, it is only the desire to get closer or enjoying time with the special person.



The romantic love is the composition of intimacy and intense emotional attachment. When the intimacy is limited to the thoughts and feelings, it is called Platonic love. That means only cognitive sharing and effective sharing happen. Sometimes love is full of emotional touch but there is no sexual relationship between the two. So, the Freudian doctrine does not fit in this regard.

Another important feature of romantic love is that there is no commitment here. In spite of having intense attraction and intimacy, the reality hurts less because of not having any commitments. The promise or commitment means the decision. The decision of staying together can be taken even without love. The family takes decision for the marriage and then the couple stays together not because of love but because of this commitment. Then the emotion works slowly between them and thus they become intimate and fall in love too.

Consultant Psychiatrist, Dept. of Psychiatry, Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University-BSMMU, Dhaka, Bangladesh