She does allow that there "are some couples with really good marriages who have come to love, like and understand each other, and so the companionate love is maintained or even grows." Both fan the flame Psychologist Robert J.Sternberg, Ph D, thinks that love doesn't have to decline, but in order for it to flourish, both partners must share the same love "story." For Sternberg, a former APA president who is dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts University and has been studying love since the 1980s, the logical psychological theories about love-including his own-were at odds with the way people actually think about love: Most people seem to see it as story-based. In a series of interviews in the 1990s with college and graduate students who ranged in age from 17 to 26 years old, Sternberg identified about 25 stories that people use to describe love.However, for the couples who stayed together, measures of commitment increased.Interestingly, she also found that among couples who broke up, both men and women were likely to report a decrease in satisfaction and commitment before the break-up, but no change in feelings of love.The questionnaires included a survey asking about feelings of love, satisfaction and commitment and another one that contained scales to measure actual levels.
"The prevailing wisdom was that passionate love would last for a few years and then companionate love would grow, but it also declines," notes Hatfield, who has continued to write and give presentations about passionate and companionate love.
One of the oldest canards – something I’ve written about before, in fact – is the idea that women don’t like sex, especially casual sex, as much as men do.