121. Chemical Bonding

usedbooks on June 20, 2014

I had this idea a couple months ago, but at the time, I decided to let my comatose comic hibernate and not be such a tease. Besides, I have fallen behind on Used Books updates. :P A little peer pressure and a dose of “eh-why-not” and I gave it a go.

I was inspired by this article. Oxytocin has long been associated with childbirth. It's a happy little euphoric chemical reward your body gives you to convince you that babies are awesome and shouldn't be punted across the room. Or for other animals (we hope) shouldn't be eaten or abandoned.

But it turns out, oxytocin is released during any social reaction, even something as simple as shaking hands with a stranger. Higher levels are released when we interact with friends or family. But the highest levels are obtained from being with “a significant other.” Monogamy is rare among mammals, but when it is seen (like in prairie voles), high levels of oxytocin are a major contributing factor.

So, if you are on a date, and don't feel that “spark,” the sensation you are seeking is probably the oxytocin. Yes, people can have “chemistry” with each other. And scientists can find love. But we might be a bit analytical about it because our feelings all have chemicals behind them, and we know it.