Love an Instinctive Emotion

increasing in sweetnessIf anyone wonders why my catalog list of books isn’t up to date, it’s because I spend time perusing the books as I enter them into my database. Sex Behavior in Marriage by Dr. Charles A. Clinton caught my eye, particularly this excerpt about one of Miss Abigail’s favorite age-old topics ~ love.

1940: Love an Instinctive Emotion

Love is an emotion unlike any other human emotion. It is an instinctive emotion ~ it comes unbidden. One does not have to go through any schooling to seek or find love; it comes without call nor will it depart at will.

Love may come upon one suddenly and overwhelmingly, or it may develop gradually, increasing in sweetness and gentleness until at last it fills one’s soul to overflowing. ‘Love at first sight’ certainly does occur, but not as frequently as it is supposed to. In many cases, not all, but in many cases, so-called love at first sight is not real love at all but an emotion often purely physical, aroused by some one with an attractive personality or a certain degree of sex appeal creating in one the desire to possess. There are, of course, many cases of real love developing suddenly, at first sight so to speak, and many persons so affected may marry and be the very happiest of couples throughout their lives. Very frequently, however, this form of love, developed suddenly before any real knowledge of the other person is acquired may, when a more intimate social relationship is established, be dispelled as the real character of the other person, either man or woman, shows itself. When such disclosures occur before marriage has taken place it is a very fortunate thing indeed.

The love which develops after a long period of association, during which the good qualities and virtues of the other person become more and more apparent and continue to grow and impress themselves upon one, is more apt to be the most enduring, the most complete and the most satisfying. The author does not in any degree belittle or decry love at first sight for he realizes that this emotion is often real and lasting if both persons are worthy in every way. Only there is always the chance that better acquaintance will bring to light characteristics and qualities which are not desirable in a mate but which were unnoticed in the first flush of emotion.

Source: Clinton, Charles A. Sex Behavior in Marriage. New York: Pioneer Publications, 1940.
~ pp. 115-16 ~