Can Brain Scans Predict Whose Love Will Last?


We are amazed and excited to answer, Yes!  It may be possible that brain scans can predict whose love will last.  In a study headed up by Mona Xu, we looked at the early-stage romance scans of people after we knew they had been together for 40 months. When you're totally in love in the first months, could your brain scan predict if you will be with that person three years later?

We compared the early-stage love scans of six people who were still together after 40 months to six people who had broken up after 40 months.

How were the brains of those people still together after more than three years different from those who had broken up? Here are the important points:

People still together showed DEACTIVATION in areas of the brain that judge others negatively.  They were suspending negative judgment.  Psychologists have found that it is extremely important to criticize your partner less and compliment more for a relationship to work.

People showed a high level of relationship satisfaction and commitment.  They answered a question saying that they were "Very Committed to the Relationship."  Feelings of commitment is key.

People still together showed DEACTIVATION in areas of the brain associated with a sense of self.  We think that this shows that the person we studied was incorporating the other person into their own sense of themselves-- almost as part of their own bodies.  This enables someone in a relationship to put the other person first when necessary.  Putting our partners' needs first sometimes is very important for a relationship to last.