The Science Of Missing Someone

The Science Of Missing Someone

Before you beat yourself up about missing someone so much, remember this: you can't help it.
110258
views

"I just don't feel like myself without you," is probably something you've thought when you've missed someone you care about.

This idea randomly popped into my head as I sat alone in my dorm missing my partner. I am not entirely sure if the science behind this is accurate because even the scientists aren't sure about the accuracy. Emotions are difficult to understand, and neurotransmitters are difficult to track.

So with that said, here's my take on things: a layman's definition of why you might actually feel like a different person when you're away from your significant other (or anyone close to your heart).

Biology and psychology teach us that our bodies naturally produce certain chemicals- hormones are produced by glands, and neurotransmitters by the central nervous system. Evolutionarily these chemicals help us to form emotional bonds to be able to maintain group relationships, intimate relationships, and parental relationships. They help keep us alive. Today, there's a lot more added to the mix, and as a result there's a lot more grey area.

The hormones related to "love" are estrogen/testosterone, and oxytocin. The neurotransmitters most closely involved are seratonin and dopamine.

Again, we produce all of these chemicals naturally, but when you are with someone you love, they surge. When they surge, your body speeds up to process them all. When you spend an extended period of time with someone you love, you basically become addicted to an elevated level of all of these chemicals, and your body becomes used to processing them all more quickly.

If your body is used to producing all of those chemicals, and processing them quickly, can you imagine what happens when you leave the person that causes it? In short, withdrawal happens. Your body stops producing an abundance of seratonin, oxytocin, etc., and to make matters worse, the chemicals that your body does produce continue to be processed so quickly it's as if they were never there.

Now you might be wondering, how does this impact one's emotional state? Well, in many ways, but it usually mimics symptoms of depression and anxiety. This is why so many people say, "I don't feel like myself," or, "I miss my other half," because their body has become used to certain stimulation that they are no longer receiving.

If you think about it, that's why the honeymoon phase in a romantic relationship feels like such a high at the beginning. Because that surge is new, and it feels good. They're all happy chemicals after all. But just like any drug, your body gets used to it, and it still feels good, you just might need extra every once in a while (hello date night).

Anyway, when you're ripped from the person that you love, it hurts. It could take months for your body to get back to normal, and every time you see that person in between, the clock is reset.

So before you beat yourself up for missing someone so much, remember this: you can't help it.


Cover Image Credit: Begin With Yes

Popular Right Now

To The Senior Graduating High School In A Month

"What feels like the end, is often the beginning."
35856
views

It wasn’t too long ago that I was in your shoes. Just a little over a year ago, I was the senior that had a month left. One month left in the hometown that I grew up in. One month left with the friends that I didn’t want to leave. One month left in the place that I had called “my school” for the past four years. You are probably thinking the same things I thought whenever it came down to only 30 days left. You’re probably scared, nervous, worried, or anxious. Maybe you’re like me and are dying to get out of high school, ready to start a new chapter. Or maybe you aren’t so ready yet. Maybe you’re wishing for a little more time.

As scary as it is, this month you have left will fly by. You’ll blink and you’ll be standing in your cap and gown, waiting for your name to be called to receive your diploma. You’ll look back on your last four years at your school and wonder why time went by so fast. It’ll be bittersweet. However, trust me when I say that you have so much to look forward to. You are about to begin taking the steps to build your future. You are going to grow and learn so much more than any high school class could teach you. You are going to meet amazing people and accomplish amazing things. So, as scared as you might be, I encourage you to take that first step out of your comfort zone and face this world head on. Chase your dreams and work towards your goals. You are smart. You are brave. You are capable of achieving amazing things. All your life, the lessons you have learned have prepared you for this point in your life. You are more than ready.

There are times when you will feel alone, scared, or confused. There are times when it won’t always be easy. But those are the times when you will shine the most because I know you will work through whatever problems you may face. Don’t think of the bad times as a terrible thing. Use them all as learning experiences. As author Joshua Marine once said, “Challenges are what make life interesting and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful.”

You might think that this is the end. However, it’s not. This is only the beginning. Trust me when I say that the adventures and opportunities you are about to face are nothing compared to high school. Whether you are going to college, going to work, or something else, this is the beginning of your journey called life. It will be exciting, it will be terrifying, but it will all be worth it.

So, as you walk out of your high school for the very last time, I encourage you to take a deep breath. Relax. You’ll always have the memories to look back on from high school. But your time is now, it begins today. Embrace it.

Cover Image Credit: http://i.huffpost.com/gen/1152445/images/o-HIGH-SCHOOL-GRADUATION-facebook.jpg

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

My Eating Disorder Was A Secret, Even From Me

No one ever talks about it, and if they had my life might be different.

219
views

I remember ninth grade health class very well, specifically one day in particular. The day we talked about eating disorders, I was ready to hear about anorexia and bulimia. I was not ready to walk out of that classroom with confirmation that I had an eating disorder, but that is exactly what I did that day.

After speaking on anorexia and bulimia, my teacher told us about Binge Eating Disorder.

My 14-year-old ears perked up. I had never heard of this disease, but I was immediately interested. I knew anorexia and bulimia well, they were the diseases that, at the time, I wish I had the determination to try, but I was too scared to hurt my body.

Binge Eating Disorder was new to me. My teacher described it as continuing to eat after you were full and eating for hours at a time. As the signs and symptoms continued to be read, I realized... that the last three years of my life had been plagued by binges. There was a lot I couldn't control in my life, but eating was one thing that I always had control over. It was the one thing that always brought me comfort.

Most binges would start after I came home from a hard day at school, or maybe after I got in a fight with a family member. Maybe I felt insecure about the growing number on the scale, but I ate.

It always started with half a bag of chips, then maybe a cookie or other sweet treat, and then I would finish with something else I could find in the pantry. My mother would come home and begin making dinner.

Ashamed, I would hide the food anywhere so my family could not tell I had been eating and then I would go eat dinner.

This was a common occurrence for me, but I had no idea that my habits were wrong or should point to an eating disorder. The only thing that I knew was wrong with me, was that I was gaining weight.

For the longest time, I thought an eating disorder was something that helped you lose weight unhealthily, not gain weight. It wasn't until I sat in a health class that I realized that there was anything wrong with me.

Education is so important in overcoming eating disorders. We are making such great strides about informing people about the dangers of eating disorders and positive body image.

It is so important that we start making Binge Eating Disorder a topic that is as known as anorexia and bulimia. No one ever discusses Binge Eating Disorder, not even the dangers of it, maybe if they had my life might have been different.

Maybe I would have found out about it earlier and could have gotten help before it got out of hand.

I wish I could say that I left that health class that day and never had a binge again. The truth is I binged several times after that, and still to this day I have an episode, although they are very rare.

It would be unrealistic to tell you that I overcame my eating disorder that day because it is a journey I am still completing. Every day presents a new challenge, and sometimes I fail, but I will succeed, and succeeding is worth a few failures.

Related Content

Facebook Comments