At the age of 3 years old, our brain has already reached 90% of its development and several default mechanisms are established – which are the things we usually do in times of stress and crisis as well as influence our decision to choose our partner.
Social and environmental factors are two of the most influential elements – much more than biological elements do. Our earliest relationships including that of our mother and primary care givers can help form and shape the kind of person we are today. In addition, the memories and perceptions we have about these relationships can influence our sense of being including our wants and desires.
Technological advancements in the field of neuroimaging showed that our initial attachments when we’re infants are imprinted on the brain. The scans proved there is synchronicity between the mother and the child. This initial attachments map out our behavioral patterns in a lifetime.
Infants are born with intense desire for passion and love from the mother and they have innate need to love and be loved in return. The initial attachment to the mother and father for the first 12 months of the child’s life is ideal but in situations where this does not happen, a positive relationship with primary caregivers can provide adequate love.
One of the important things in our lives as human beings is the capacity to relate to another whole person other than ourselves. Denial of this basic need may result to inadequacies of our development and growth both physically and emotionally. Infants can relate to another by means of touch and this cultivates trust.
So, why do our mothers set our love life for us?
According to a research, a loving and supportive relationship can significantly alter brain function. Our initial attachments or relationships – usually between the mother and infant – decide the kind of relationship we seek when we reach adulthood. Therefore, our mothers can set our love life for us basing on the principle that ‘mother-infant relationship can significantly influence the kind of person we are going to be including how we behave, live and love.’ This does not mean, however, that consciously we seek out relationships bearing the mother-like criteria. It is the traces of our primary attachments that unconsciously influence us to look for its equivalent.
Have you ever heard of the term – ‘love hurts?’ It is actually more than just a social quote. A neuro-scientific research demonstrated some areas of the brain that were affected by physical pain can get triggered by emotional pain like rejection or other emotional stressors. If our initial attachment has been the primary cause of our emotional pain, we tend to repeat the same pattern in our relationships thus forming a vicious cycle – whether positive or negative.
Nonetheless, it is interesting to note that our default mechanisms are settings we can change and alter. The emotional pains of our initial attachments can be healed and can change the pattern we have been compelled to repeat. Since it is in the subconscious process, all we have to do is to bring it up to the conscious process so we learn how to move on and take up new patterns.