A site user, after explaining what is going on in the user's life, asks:

"My question is..

1.  Is love really such an important factor in life...or is it over hyped?
2.  Can one lead a happy healthy life..without love?
3.  If the answer to my second question is Yes, then my next question is....How?
4.  If the answer to my second question is No...then I would like to know.. how and where can one experience this thing called love?

Sorry, that's four questions!

I know you are not a counselor..but I ask you these questions since you are such an evolved person.

It would be interesting to hear your view point  :)"



It's funny that I had remembered your question as "is love a 'need'?"  

The answer to that question is clearly a "no". 


First, some background:

While love is not a "need", it turns out that those who responded and loved in certain ways were the ones whose genes survived 10,000 years ago.  This resulted in our programming to be such that we get pleasant "chemical" jolts when we do those things that perpetuate our (and thus our genes) survival - and unpleasant ones when we violate what appears to be what our primitive mind thinks is necessary (or best) to survive.  (You must understand Evolution if you are to be able to understand human behavior and realities.)

Note that the "jolts" (feelings) are strictly a chemical and mechanically programmed thing - and there is plenty of room for an "evolved" person to ignore many of the impulses and short term negative chemicals.  


Note also that many of the negative feelings we experience come from violation of some beliefs that we have picked up from caregivers and the culture and/or from errant thinking - beliefs that are erroneous but, inappropriately, relied on to live our lives from. 
For instance, we "pick up" or "put together" an "expectation" of how things "should be" (no matter how realistically or unrealistically).  (A prince in shining armor, a princess who is loving and never critical or demanding, a perfect relationship, and happiness forever where we are always approved of, 100%...)  (To understand relationships and life, read The Effect Of Expectations In Life And In Relationships - A Major Creator Of Unhappiness - Needlessly!.)

Though the expectation may be erroneous, our primitive brain will "compare" it to where it thinks we are relative to that expectation, as if it were real and not just "made up" - and it will give us a "not surviving well" chemical jolt to "motivate" us to get back to the job of meeting that expectation for what it believes to be a proper survival/performance level.  (Understand The Story Of Our Happy And Our Unhappy Chemicals - A Tale Of The Mechanisms For Survival.  This is a necessary underlying understanding for all of human "psychology".)

Of course, that way of operating is truly nonsensical if one sees reality and uses one's higher brain.  Realistically, there is no "threat" at all from not meeting some idealistic and/or made up standard expectation that we "should" measure up to.  All we need to do is meet a level of performance that realistically assures us of our survival.  

The purpose of studying life is to be able to let go of these misconceptions.  And that is one of the key purposes of this site.


But the above does not answer your question. 

Truly "love" is overhyped, with lots of untrue "romantic, wishful thinking" around it.  Much of it is pure nonsense as it doesn't at all match up with reality and how humans are.  (Although it may be a pain to study the reality of "love", it is essential that you understand it.  You should know What Is Love?  And What Isn't Love?, plus, for good measure what drives romantic love:  The Biochemistry Of Love.)

We are not super-evolved yet and we still operate off of an "exchange" system, where we "must" get a boost toward our survival (or the survival of our genes, actually).  

We seek safety (the avoidance of a threat to our survival), so if another is loyal or in some other way indicates that they will back us up, there are positive chemicals emitted.

Those chemicals make us "feel good", and are often included in the "biochemistry feeling of love".  Note that what we are talking about here is the "feeling" of love, which is actually the consciously noticed sensation in the body of feeling a good chemical.  (A feeling/emotion = a physical sensation.  This is discussed as one of the basics of life which is acknowledged by such disciplines as Buddhism where they recognize that A Thought Is Just A Thought, An Emotion Is Just An Emotion.)

And, then, we make up all sorts of things to romanticize relationships and sex and love to be the end-all and be-all of life. 

And, if we believe all this bullbleep, we find that reality lets us down.


A major problem is when others, whom we may marry out of passionate expectation of bliss, may not play by the same rules of exchange. 

For instance, if a man is not trained to be loving and to consider others, he will not pick it up on his own - in contrast with women, who generally are able to pick it up on their own due to their having evolved differently than a man.  The woman has learned to do this, for valid evolution/survival reasons needed for a woman to pass on her genes and/or help children survive so that they can pass on their genes. 

A man will often be ensconced in the "teachings" of the culture with regard to "being a real man" - and he is driven toward that, as he feels his very survival and social status is dependent on his being perceived as a "true man" ("Me real man!  Grunt, grunt!). 

However, if a man is properly taught and trained in what works in life, then he will play well in the system.  If his mother does not teach him this adequately, he will operate off of a not-so-good, primitive, sometimes harsh, belief system.  Historically, (ignorant) men have treated women inappropriately and sought only to protect their woman against being taken by others.  This is often built into the outdated cultures in many religions, which tend not to be updated for newly discovered principles or realities in life. 


Since one cannot "control" another, one might not get from another what one wants in the area of romance (or even in being "liked").  An evolved person realizes this and accepts the reality of it.  That leaves the only alternative to be to choose not to be dependent on the behavior of others to get what he/she wants but to figure out ways to realistically meet one's own needs.  (It is vital that you have an understanding of Control In Life And Relationships - Wisdom Here Makes all The Difference and Dependency - "Giving Away Your Power".)

No, love is not a need, per se, but one will definitely have a better life if one figures out how to evoke "good" chemicals - and, then, chooses to be the generator of those "good feelings".  Loving another person who one is attached to (or even just giving to another human) is the chief reliable source of "love feelings", such as "oxytocin" and "feelings" of connection.  It is essential that you "get", fully, that it is primarily YOU who must be the generator of love - without any fairy tales.


Since, "cooperation" within the tribes was a major cause of the survival of cavemen, we have evolved to get a positive jolt from doing whatever is cooperative.  (To have that statement make sense to you, you must understand the process of Evolution.)

Sometimes our cooperation is just"functional", but at other times it is quite touching - such as when we help another person to get more of what he/she wants, to get out of a dilemma, and/or just to feel better because of the compassion and/or love and/or "caring" you give them. 

Together, with those who "cooperate" and "follow the rules", we can create a lot of safety, better progress in life than doing it on our own, and good feelings of "love".   An example to note is that we all get a positive jolt from doing a kindness for another. 


The point here is that we are in charge of our lives and "getting the good chemicals". 

It is up to us to do all that is actually in our control to proactively generate those good chemicals and to avoid relying too much on the behavior of others to supply it to us.  

Of course, we can develop regular "suppliers" of good behaviors toward us that will add to the good feelings. And that is something you definitely can do, with some learning.

It is, I think, very important to develop one's "tribe" that will support a person in one or more endeavors in their lives.  This comes from friends and those who have decided to support you and be in cooperation with you.  (Note that, though not exclusive to the one gender, men do not "connect" very well in that way, as their "agenda" has been to "provide", to be of high status in the male community, and to feel competent and strong.) 


You ask "can one lead a happy, healthy life…without love?" 

A truly evolved person could. 

However, a truly evolved person would be wise enough to know that "love" will generate additional good feelings that add to one's being happy. 

He/she will first provide much (and sufficient) love to his/her "self" and not engage in the opposite of that (criticism of self, abuse of self, anger directed unintelligently toward oneself, etc.).  

Then he/she will seek supportive "friends" and acquaintances and provide many positives to them so that there is a "connection" that feels good and also adds to one's happiness.  Cooperation, compassion, supporting another are all forms and/or degrees of "love" - and all are very positive and can be linked into more than sufficiently to have lots of the generalized feeling of love (not based, erroneously, on "lust" or "sex" or "ultimate approval from another"). 

A wise person will realize that he/she must avoid, like the plague, those who are not trained otherwise, who can be competitive, cliquish, demeaning, defensive, trying to "get" for themselves something they think they need to survive.  Interestingly, those people do not realize that they are actually doing themselves harm and will never lead truly happy lives. 

Those others simply do not "know better".  "Knowing better" is a key concept of reality and not a term around which one can legitimately hold blame and make wrong.  Those people simply do not know better, so they cannot do better unless there is a significant force that enters their lives to cause otherwise (to know better) - and that is unlikely - so we must simply avoid them and gather only supportive, more loving and cooperative people around us. (It is vital to understand this reality/concept:  No-Fault, No-Blame, No Criticism - Essential For Happiness and, a core understanding, No Fault - Just "Not Knowing, Yet..." Whatever Happens Happens For A Valid Human Reason.) 

Gathering a great tribe around us, though at times some of them will "let us down", will provide more than sufficient "love" and emotional fulfillment with regard to relationships. 

So, the answer is "yes, you can lead a happy, healthy life", even without fulfilling the "fantasy" and "false, romantic expectations" of how it "should be" (but isn't) in life and relationships.

Just align yourself with reality and then do those things which realistically generate cooperation and connection with others who are able to give to you. 

Note: Children, though there is of course love from the parent, will often not be one of those who is a reliable source of love, for they are still caught up in some of the primitive selfishness that precedes wisdom and learning how to love. 

Some people, unfortunately, do not ever learn how to give love. 

You must be the key provider of love for yourself and the manager of your relationships such that you gain "love" from investing in the right people. 

That's a long answer to a short question, but a vital one…

And, where you go from here might be to visit the overview of contents on love, loving, and being loved and select articles of interest and benefit.  


Note that you need not click the links and can just read the article straight through.  Some people will choose to go back and drill down deeper by clicking the links to gain deeper levels of understanding


Love, Loving, And Being Loved - Section Contents, Links