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Sep. 29th, 2003 | 06:53 pm

Sometime yesterday I started feeling like there was no point in putting any effort into trying to make myself presentable, it's not like anyone is going to want to date me anyway.

I was still sulking today at lunch.

I stopped sulking after my boss told me an entertaining story about the neurological basis for romantic feelings. Apparently they did functional MRIs of people who were deeply in love with someone and showed them pictures of their love along with others of the appropriate orientation they had been friends with for a long time.

Two places lit up and one place decreased in intensity.

For me the place that decreased in intensity was interesting, for their sample, the drop was in a part of the brain associated with feelings of fear.

Thinking about my own life, I bet that doesn't happen to me. I see someone I find attractive and end up being paralyzed by fear. With some concentration I can dissociate from my fear and express interest in someone but it usually comes out quite dispassionate.

Now if I could only modify my brain.

(Makes bioinformatics a more appealing career path)

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Comments {5}

Jane Tutor

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from: pixelpoet
date: Sep. 29th, 2003 09:11 pm (UTC)
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I think it's the same for me. I tend to have fears of the person I like.

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Diane Trout

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from: alienghic
date: Oct. 1st, 2003 01:10 am (UTC)
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I think most people do, it's just some people are better at dealing with that fear. Some by having a neural advantage in feeling less fear, others by rationally trying to convince themselves that it will be ok.

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Nafees

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from: nogbogfrog
date: Sep. 29th, 2003 09:19 pm (UTC)
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fascinating. I'm going through a breakup right now. Except it's one of those where it was on good terms, and I still want to be around her, and she still calls me.

Perhaps we are both afraid of other people.

Did they determine an inverse relationship between concentrations in the "fear region", and the other two?

-n

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Nafees

that sounded dumb

from: nogbogfrog
date: Sep. 29th, 2003 09:21 pm (UTC)
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I meant a direct inverse relationship. Now that I think about it, that would be a very difficult unbiased experiment to construct.

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Diane Trout

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from: alienghic
date: Oct. 1st, 2003 01:08 am (UTC)
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I actually haven't read the paper yet so I don't know if they found a relationship or not. It was "The neural basis of romantic love" Andreas Bartels and Semir Zeki.

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