Long eulogised, forever celebrated, universally coveted and ceremoniously exalted, love is that one experience of transcendence that has bound together different lives and life forms of the earth. Humans know this feeling for sure and play it out ever so efficiently; and so does perhaps other animals as their well versed lingo in the hugs and the cuddles or in other simple shows of affection lead us to believe. But talking about it as we do always in the human context of things, love is more than what we think it is. Indeed understood very often as one of the best feelings life can bless you with, love however has always been part panacea and part affliction, rendering you as remorseful and lifeless as it has you also radiant in the happy glow of it. Love is irony and dilemma at once, an oxymoron and a ridicule all residing together within the same set premises of the intense emotions, of the delirious feels, of the calm peace and everything evocative that has your heart skipping beat after beat, of course not in continuation otherwise you would have been as good as dead! On second thoughts though, love doesn’t leave you faring much better off as well, for ultimately it is something that arises when Cupid’s arrow strikes you real hard, inevitably therefore leaving at least a scratch, if not jarring up a whole trail of wounds, that would come to hurt sooner than later.
It though can’t be written all off- the surprising ways in which the workings of love assert its goody nature flowing through the heart and into more advanced areas of the body. Encompassing a range of health benefits for the average human that does everything from destressing and calming to beautifying and glowing up the body from within, love can very well reveal to be the rosy reality it is so glorified as. But the goodness of its nature cannot take certain attributes away from love that makes it also the demon that possesses the power to destroy lives altogether. A dangerous disease, as can be gauged from such inherently associated terms as lovesickness and lovelorn and such other lovestruck derivatives, the many ways in which love plays havoc with the human mind and spirit is enough to make anyone want to steer clear of it, despite the many lures that lurk within its always impending advances. No wonder then that falling in love is often affixed with such descriptions as crazy and head over heels and such other stuff that all point to a topsy turvy world working upon a range of fluctuating hormones. And while even in its most basic accompaniment of the emotional euphoria, that what falling in love is all about essentially, this raging war of the chemicals inside the brain and the body also can advance to non innate but very possible outcomes of utmost emotional disbalance, arising most often from heartbreak but also surprisingly commonly from seemingly happy but unfulfilling relationships, even as it can and indeed does from the aggravated link with existing psychological or mental conditions as well.
What makes love more appropriate to be labelled as an affliction of not just the heart but also the entire human body is the very nature of its working. When you fall in love, in the initial stages of it when it is all bliss and cheerful and happy, the much touted emotion marks its onset with a range of conditions that are by no means symptoms of a healthy existence. The romantic sounding butterflies in the stomach which are but a queasy feeling you aren’t particularly comfortable in, a certain lightheaded dizziness that leads also to bouts of disrupted concentration and which arises in part also from the loss of sleep, not to mention a loss of appetite as well, love manifests itself in such warning signs from the very beginning that we choose often to sideline, interpreting it as all the feels we had desired for all our lives when in reality these oft ignored physical aberrations indeed hold the potential to affect us even when it mostly subsides after a short period of time.
Other more advanced physical conditions that present themselves as a continuous reminder of the love disaster that we are leading ourselves into can include heart palpitations, shortness of breath, stomach pain, and depression, particularly with such forms of love that hanker on the hinges of obsession, causing therefore immense emotional turmoil that continue to act and react all the way down to the health aspect of the body.
As regards more expected areas of the love malady, that which can be unrequited love or an unsuccessful or toxic romantic relationship, the effects are even more pronounced. Continuous rejection has the body and the mind bearing through a different kind of pain that adversely affects the healthy, functional rhythm of the heart and therefore the proper working mechanism of the body. Specifically with the heart mechanism, that experiences something called vagal withdrawal inducing a very volatile fight or flight response as a form of emotional flooding, the threats involved are very real. Associated also are such blatantly physical manifestations like organ pain and headaches, as well as conditions on opposite ends of the spectrum like constipation on one hand and diarrhea on the other. Of course there also exists the widely perceived as metaphorical devastation that heartbreaks tend to be but that which pose also serious risks in the medical context, as a health condition known as stress cardiomyopathy. More commonly understood as broken heart syndrome, this is one really debilitating condition that love can present as, to even an otherwise perfectly healthy individual who undergoes such intense fluctuations in their hormone levels as a stress reaction that can cause blood clots, thereby putting them at real risk of a heart attack. Chest pain and heart failure are other equally concerning issues arising from this form of a figurative broken heart which of course in no way lessens the emotional damage done to the one at the receiving end of the heartbreak. Deep anguish and despair, extreme pain, even anger and anxiety takes over the mind as the person is cruelly jolted out from an unreal reverie, leading them therefore to experience a general sense of desolateness that serious interferes with the view they have of themselves and of life in general. Depression and insomnia most often sets in, sometimes severe to the point of utmost concern, in which case it can be a very veritable means for love to end up ending whole lives and existences. Not to mention stress that is anyway a quick response to all life issues and with something as immense as the pain of heartbreak weighing you down, this one root of all of life’s health evils gains even more ground to advance and sustain.
Surprisingly though, the dangers of love also persist throughout the course of the relationship you pursue, even quite successfully. While that isn’t something exclusive to romantic love, permeating rather all versions of it, romances perhaps are more susceptible to the phenomenon of infectious depression setting in owing to it being a more conscious exploration of life’s emotions. A depressed partner ups your own chance of developing feelings of depression and two disillusioned souls living in tandem with each other might not be the best of refuges for either. Additionally and often unrelated is another form of depression that is seen plaguing romantic relationships and that is what is known as post sex depression. Specifically for women this experience of what is medically called a state of postcoital dysphoria is marked by such negative emotions as sadness, anxiety, anger, regret and irritability, triggered by something that hasn’t been completely explored as of yet. Other forms of the love disease persist as well that have been interpreted as everything from specific psychological conditions like erotomania and erotophobia to general unhealthy behavior like emotional overdependence and attachment disorder as well as basic health conditions like hypertension and the like triggered by the stress of having to deal with all the relationship pains without the gains. In such assertions of it then that deviates from the commonly associated flutters arising from a chance encounter as Cupid’s choicest crush to dwell in the actual realisation of being the mischievous angel’s ill fated target, the tales of love are not one always trapped in magic, they sometimes are rather a dive into the treacherous treacle of the tumultuous.