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dcyphr | How Do We Love? Romantic Love Style in Men Is Related to Lower Testosterone Levels

Abstract

This study uses testosterone levels in the blood, prenatal testosterone levels, and testosterone receptor levels to see if testosterone effects love style. They found that low testosterone is associated with Eros, Ludus, Pragma, and Mania love styles. Receptor levels had no correlation with love style.

Aims

This study aims to see if testosterone levels have an effect on love styles.

Introduction

There are three primary love styles: Eros, Ludus, and Storge. Eros is passionate and romantic love, based on intuition and chemistry. Ludus is the playful style, so they date for fun and do not like intimacy. Storge is associated with a strong relationship that has formed from a deep friendship. The three secondary love styles are Manic, Pragma, and Agape. Manic love is thought to be obsessive and possessive. Pragma is business like, practical, and realistic. Agape love is selfless, unconditional, and committed love.

It is unclear whether testosterone levels impact things like marital and relationship status, or the other way around. There is evidence and good rationale for both. Studies do show that gender can play a role in love style, so this leads this research team to hypothesize that testosterone controls love style.

The ratio between the second and fourth finger, called the digit ratio, measures prenatal testosterone levels. The digit ratio can predict jealousy and number of sex partners in men.

Measuring testosterone receptors can be used to measure genetic factors that may affect love style as well.

Results

High blood testosterone levels were associated with low romantic and selfless love styles. Low prenatal testosterone levels were associated with higher romantic and game like love styles. The genetic testing of the receptors did not have any correlations.

Discussion

The results show that high testosterone levels reduce passionate, intimate, committed love styles. High testosterone levels are not associated with long term attachment in relationships. Lower testosterone levels may be associated with long lasting and stable relationships. Though we see associations, there is not evidence to say that testosterone causes these trends. It is possible that long term relationships may cause low levels of testosterone. Single men and men in new relationships have higher testosterone levels, but men in long term relationships have lower levels. Studies have shown that men with high testosterone levels in the saliva are more likely to get divorced, spend less time with children, have more sexual partners, and are more competitive. The digit ratio has shown similar correlations between high testosterone and certain behaviors as well as physical characteristics. This study has shown that there is a relationship between prenatal testosterone levels and love styles.

Methods

65 students ages 19-21 were given questionnaires to assess their love style. Blood samples were taken to assess the testosterone levels. Saliva samples were used to get genetic information on the testosterone receptors. Hand scans were taken to calculate the digit ratio of the participants.

Conclusion

Love style may be partially due to biology. Future studies with less limitation can help tell us more about testosterone and love styles.