Talk:Limerence/Archive II

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Nature of the Article, Dispute

This page is nothing but drippy pseudo-scientific pop-psychology drivel stated as absolute fact, people. There is not even a question of an academic consensus on the issue, the only proponent of the objective psychological existence of "limerence" is a 60s new age psychologist who performed one grossly unscientific study on an idea she picked up from an effusively Romantic novel written two centuries ago. None of this remotely justifies sentences like "limerence is an involuntary cognitive and emotional state characterized primarily by intrusive thinking, longing for reciprocation, and sensitivity to external events that signify uncertainty on the one hand, and hope of reciprocation on the other". What sound and undisputed proof is there that this phenomenon exists, and is distinct from previously defined emotions? Just Tenov's "study". This article sorely needs to be pared down to two or three paragraphs, all prefaced with "according to Tenov", and there's no way in hell "passion" should redirect here.

What sound and undisputed proof is there that love "exists?". How do you define an emotion "existing?" I would say that it exists if someone believes it so. In which case, given a number of people identify with this "pseudo-scientific pop-psychology drivel", then its drivel that is worth note on wikipedia. I would hope this article serves as inspiration for further research, I for one think the concept of "limerence" accurately describes personal situations I have been in, better than "infatuation" or "passion". I think Tennov chose the use of a new word so that the state of mind resulting from her work could be considered without being lumped with other feelings that have rather ambigous meanings. Personally, I find the "Idol phenomenon" absolutely abhorrent, but I'm not going to ask for references to it to be removed from wikipedia as a "waste of bandwidth". In the mass of self-help books on "winning your ex back", or "conquering infatuation", her book and this article provided me with something useful, a small (but well written) pseudo-scientific (I'll give you that) study. But its a pseudo-scientific study that is actually useful, and that many people relate too.--210.86.74.205 12:23, 24 July 2006 (UTC)

Monogamous love is a universally accepted name for a verifiable psychological phenomenon (brain scans, behavioral tests, etc.) derived from an understood genetic mechanism. American Idol is a major and significant sociological phenomenon whose existence is obviously not in question. "Limerence", on the other hand, has zero scientific evidence and is not accepted by as a distinct emotion any academic community. Your experiences constitute original research and are generally immaterial, and moreover, "usefulness" is not an encyclopedic criterion. I am not asking that it be eliminated, only written in other than an authoritative voice, as it is currently inconsistent with wikipedia's standards for POV, tone and balance. And having romantic passion redirect here is an abomination.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 67.4.148.181 (talkcontribs) 18:34, July 26, 2006 (UTC)
I would agree the linking is inappropriate. And I am not sure it quite consitutes its "emotion" category. But I do think the article is very well written. Perhaps there could be more emphasis with statements such as "according to Tennov". I think you're being a little precious about love however, as the definitions of it vary so widely and has become such an abstract term that it is very difficult to conduct any sort of study on. Also, I would certainly concur that sexual attraction, even passion, is an "understood genetic mechanism" - but love? Come on! Understood? Behavioural scientists I have spoken with generally think Love is one of the great mysteries. I do agree however that those links from romantic passion should be removed. I appear to have mistaken the "this is a waste of bandwidth" and "this is drippy pseudo-scientific pop-psychology drivel" as being you wanted it removed, or grossly edited. I think you raise valid points with the wikipedia standards, but the tone of your first post... well... struck me as being rather high-and-mighty and a tad rude.

—The preceding unsigned comment was added by 210.86.74.205 (talkcontribs) 03:44, July 27, 2006.

I've been saying from the beginning that this article is about the definition of a neologism from the research conducted in the 1960s by Tennov. Nothing should redirect here except misspellings of the word. But to say that the only place that mentions limerence is in her 1970s book is not correct, she is frequently cited in academic journals such as Current Psychology or the Journal of Sex Research. If you had looked at her book you would see in her introduction she is aware of the limitations of her research, she never wanted it to be a definitive work on the subject but rather a push into studying whether such a phenomena exists. If you had looked at her website you would notice that she refers to it as "limerence theory" and not as a stated fact. Lastly, it's not New Age and it's not self-help. If it were self-help, there would be advice somewhere. What Tennov is trying to do is define this emotion as distinct from others, or at least push people to start doing more research into that. abexy 15:37, 27 July 2006 (UTC)
I will be very heavily revising and contracting this page when I have the time, per wikipedia guidelines regarding original research, as well as many others (to wit, "Unstable neologisms, and ideas stemming from one individual who is not an authority, or from a small group of such individuals, should either go to articles for deletion (because they "fail the test of confirmability", not because they are necessarily false), or should be copyedited out"). If it has been cited in academic journals, links would go a ways, but even so they do not reflect the consensus on the issue that the article presumes throughout. As for Tennov's acknowledgment of the limitations of her work, nowhere is that reflected in the article. If the obsessive proponents of the theory evince far less humility about its scope and authority than the actual author, well, we have some highly unencyclopedic cultlike behavior going on here. I do agree that the article is well written, but it's also a travesty of objectivity and pseudo-science stated as accepted fact, the latter, I hope you'll agree, being the more important. Finally, continuing the digression, I would say that there is a widespread understanding in the psychological and anthropological communities that what is typically defined (and absurdly romanticized) as romantic love is a genetic propensity for monogamy to facilitate child bearing and raising. Nothing more. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 67.4.151.111 (talkcontribs) 03:23, August 16, 2006 (UTC)
Homosexuals do not experience romantic love? Post-menopausal women do not experience romantic love? Your "very heavy revisions" should stick to verifiable information. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
Menopause and insufficient hormone exposure in utero do not alter basic emotional functions. Your snarky comments should be based around concepts you actually understand. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Fermium (talkcontribs) 204.161.5.200 (UTC)

Lack of Understanding

Just another say on why this article doesn't make much sense at all. I do not know what limerent means. I do not understand at all. It looks like this is describing the effect of some drugs... I don't have a high standard of english but I usually get the general gist of what the article is saying, and understand some words from past usage in familiar text. But, forgive me, I can't make out a lot of words in this article, and it's painfully hard to read. I think the article should be made a lot clearer, maybe add a simplified example or something, because it's not just super smart people who read Wikipedia, y'know. Just had another read, yes, on second thought, this looks like an article about love and etc in general, and it pretty pointless. Forgive me if I have lost the point completely. Leemorrison 18:22, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Ok, if you really want more insight into what Limerence is, do a web search on the term "oneitis," which you can consider unrequited limerence. Highly analytical people not in touch with their emotions will not at all understand this article or the concept of oneitis, even though being prone to experiencing the emotion first hand. Doolin 20:59, 14 August 2006 (UTC)
If, in order to understand an article, one must be in a subjective "in touch with their emotions" state, then comprehension of the article is grounded in POV. Australian Matt 04:50, 19 November 2006 (UTC)

Please improve this article.

I must be one of those highly analytical people deplored above, because I can't understand this article at all. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 84.9.73.228 (talkcontribs) 04:42, August 19, 2006 (UTC)

Not deplored. To be constructive, I would suggest adding some examples of limerence at the beginning of the article, plus a reworking of the definition. It's not at all clear until the end of the first paragraph that another person is involved. And then they're called an object. Are there any examples of limerence in fiction? Shakespeare? History? News stories?
In fiction, almost certainly, though I cannot think of any at the moment. Jane Austen's characters come to mind, especially in Pride and Prejudice: Darcy to Elizabeth, then Elizabeth reciprocates once Darcy withdraws his attention. (In fact, P&P is like a minicourse in seduction. The whole book can be broken down technically into seduction phases.) I don't know my Shakespeare well enough, so can't say about that. History: Marc Antony. Unrequited as Cleopatra was just tooling him. Current news, not too sure because this kind of thing doesn't get reported unless it goes sociopathic. Doolin 04:39, 26 September 2006 (UTC)
I think this may be one of the many concepts from the social sciences that I "just don't get". Please help educate ignorami like me.
Yeah, some of this stuff is tough. Words expressing emotion are really context dependent. For example, one popular way for contemporary young women to describe unusual or confusing social encounters is "random." The "random" in this context describes an emotional state of the person, not an action. Again, I cannot explain it in words, you have to actually "feel it," then recognize what you felt, then we would have a basis for discussion. Limerence is the same sort of thing. Doolin 04:39, 26 September 2006 (UTC) (Or may what I just don't get is that this is a humorous spoof article. Doh!)
No, the article is real, as is the emotion, and it is different from infatuation, being in love, etc. It's most closely akin to having a "crush" on someone. Parsing emotions is takes practice. A woman once called me on the phone to announce that she "couldn't get me out of her head." This is an example of the intrusive aspect of limerence: unbidden, possibly even unwelcome thoughts of the other person. The word "object" is very often used in the context of "object of affection" and is understood to mean another person. The usage may be archaic, I believe it dates back at least to Jane Austen.
It's not different from infatuation or love, it's one of thousands of tiny nuances in those broader emotions. In fact, infatuation is more or less defined as being intrusive, so it's not so much a nuance as a second name.204.161.5.100 10:07, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
Doolin makes the point above, that unless you have experienced this it must sound like psychobabble. But to those of us who have experienced this, it is very real and very accurately described in the article. As for differences, Limerence must have a connection to reality, whereas Infatuation does not. I would hope that anyone who despises this article as much as many of you apparently do take into consideration that you are trying to redefine the explanation of an emotion (which you have not experienced) to people who have experienced this. That's highly POV. We should stick to the research done by Tennov. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

The Nuances of the Article.

Infatuation may have a connection to reality as well. Each tiny subset of a broader emotion does not warrant a lengthy panegyric. And again, neither your individual experiences nor the research of one psychologist constitute anything near the justification for the dogmatic and authoritative tone of the article. Requiring proof and not individual experience is not POV, it's wikipedia policy.

Highly analytical people have difficulty with emotional nuances for at least a couple of reasons. One of these reasons is that they tend to suppress overly emotional experiences, thus never develop an "emotional palate" for which to compare various emotional states. The second is that without a fairly well developed emotional palette, emotions like limerence, or frankly, everything I am writing here, appear as color to a blind person. More simply stated: unadulterated bullshit. I know this from being on both sides of this issue: my PhD is in computational mechanics, but I have spent a couple of years exploring emotional nuances (that just sounds like bullshit, doesn't it?).
Believe it or not, it's completely possible to be in touch with one's emotions and still not buy into maudlin drivel such as this.204.161.5.100 10:07, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
Perhaps this is simply not an emotion you can experience. What's wrong with that? Accept that others can and find this article very useful and informative. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
You have no way of knowing that you're experiencing an emotion distinct from established ones like infatuation. Hence the need to demonstrate limerence to be real and discrete in clinical studies published in peer-reviewed journals. That is the main criteria for being encyclopedic in this case, not what one devotee considers useful and informative.
I do find it odd you believe you have the ability to explain my personal feelings and emotions to me. But that has nothing to do with the article. "Clinical studies published in peer-reviewed journals" is not a requirement for an article. Tennov did research, wrote a book and made a theory. And that's what the article says. I just don't see the problem here. Fermium 04:31, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
I am doing no such thing; you claim that your experience is objectively distinct from those of others, yet you cannot possibly verify that without the psychic insight you mockingly attribute to me. There is no way for you to know that your "limerence" is not the same as what others call infatuation without seeing inside their heads. But as no sound studies exists, that speculation is all the evidence you have.204.161.5.200 15:50, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
I am in no way attempting to insert my personal experiences into the article. If there is something wrong with the "tone", that can be changed. Personally, I think the article makes it very clear this is a theory. As such, by definition, it cannot be "proven". I see nothing wrong with entries about theories on Wikipedia, particularly in a field like this. Fermium 04:31, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
It was never a matter of being "proven" (and your claiming that at this stage is extremely duplicitous), the concept of limerence has exactly zero evidence supporting it. Not one remotely scientific study. And before I went through it, the article was more along the lines of "Limerence exists, limerence is distinct from passion, period", with no mention of "theory". I was the one who made it clear that it was a theory (held by a tiny, uncredentialed minority) and not established fact. Kindly avoid such egregious distortions in the future.204.161.5.200 15:50, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

Qualities of Emotions.

Think of emotions as qualitative rather than quantitative. Melancholy is traditionally referred to as blue, but within the realm of melancholic emotions (ranging from simple lack of motivation to suicidal behavior), there is a wide range indeed.

In any case, feel free to be a skeptic. Science can't yet measure all emotions precisely, and until that time, the notion of limerence is necessarily subjective. Doolin 04:20, 26 September 2006 (UTC)
Yes, and as at best it is the 'subjective' experience of one woman and a tiny cult following, entirely unencyclopedic as well.204.161.5.100 10:07, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
First off, all emotions are "subjective" by their very nature. As for describing some of us as a "tiny cult following", such language does not improve Wikipedia. Please be constructive. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
Nevertheless, these are accurate descriptors. "Tiny" is a matter of fact, and this article is basically the definition of a cult following. FYI, "cult following" does not necessarily carry the pejorative connotation you seem to ascribe to it; fans of certain movies, for example, often wear the appellation with pride. 204.161.5.200 23:41, 24 October 2006 (UTC) --84.9.73.228 10:42, 19 August 2006 (UTC)
I would suggest reading the original book, Love and Limerence by Tennov, as it contains numerous (and often very detailed and lengthy) accounts of those inflicted with limerence.  The book is found in many college libraries.
Reading the book will, in my opinion, also help you understand how Tennov differentiated limerence from infatuation, as the author, too, seems to be aware that the former could be mistaken as the latter, and goes a long way to define and elaborate on the concept as concretely as possible. HTH, blue-kun 05:01, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
Then why does infatuation redirect here, if they are not the same? --Lhademmor 19:45, 29 August 2006 (UTC)
See discussions above; it has been suggested someone volunteer to write up a separate article under the title of infatuation, but no one got around to it. --blue-kun 07:38, 31 August 2006 (UTC)
Well I really hope that someone (who knows about the subject) will do it, since I find this redirecting confusing. --Lhademmor 14:17, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

Dogmatic?

This article appears to be regurgitated from another text - the tone of the entire article is authoritarian and very dogmatic. Despite being a full time philosophy and cultural studies student, this one went waaay over my head. There is no way that I'd find this in any printed encyclopedia: I can only imagine a brief summary of the author and her theory. No NPOV to be found. Verbose and obscure terminology (which is ok if there are definitions of terms - attempts at such only make things worse). Lack of wikilinks. Almost definately original research - limerent??? Gimme a break. Australian Matt 14:32, 4 September 2006 (UTC)

Perhaps, Matt, you haven't read through this talk page very well. If you had, you would understand that the subject of limerence is a very complex and oft-misunderstood one, and that only through the hard work and dedication of several knowledgeable and studious users does this page exist in any semblance of good form and style at all. Still, there is much hard work to be done in this article, but it cannot be done at all with the constant amount of bickering, complaining, and utter lunacy that fills the majority of this talk page. Here, for your benefit, and the benefit of others, reasoning behind the madness that is the Limerence article.
This article is not taken verbatim, or as you say, "regurgitated," from any other source, but rather is a compilation of several months hard work by aforementioned dedicated users with a keen interest in limerence as a concept and the history thereof. While it is true that the majority of this article is based upon the life work of Doctor Dorothy Tenov (a de facto contributor to this article), this does not mean that simply because the word itself is a neologism that the concept itself does not deserve to be documented fully in an article. It is also odd, mind you, that you criticize the lack of wikilinks and proliferation of "obscure terminology" while claiming to be a student of philosophy. Tend to thine own garden first! Furthermore, from your own userpage one can discern your hatred for so-called "waffle" articles. Limerence a waffle is not, sir. Your master plan for the Wikipedia seems vaguely reminiscent of another... Sudoartiste 23:22, 5 September 2006 (PST)
I don't think we'll be able to agree very easily here. In my opinion the "semblance" and "style" of the actual article is dogmatic. Instead of stating that "Limerance is a term founded by psychologist Dorothy Tenov in the 1960s", the article says "Limerence is an involuntary cognitive and emotional state characterized primarily by intrusive thinking..etc..". There is actually very little criticism of the concept in the article. I found the 1984 metaphor accurate - though i struggle to align it withmy so called "master plan". New words are ok! So are new concepts. But they must be interrogated. Wikilinks are pivotal to understanding new conceptual reasoning of emotions and humans in general when they're presented on Wikipedia. There should be a "definition of terms" headline - as there are for new ontologies and new philologies. There also must be a "criticisms" headline. I cannot perceive a concept to be documented fully until it can be disagreed with. If not, things start looking pretty Orwellian to me. Australian Matt 08:53, 7 September 2006 (UTC)

Nature of the Article: Dispute, Continued

I think anyone here who does not understand this article or is confusing limerence with infatuation and love, is because they have never experienced limerence themselves. Perhaps I can enlighten you with my personal experience. My husband and I are currently separated because I felt as if I was falling in love with another man. The peak of these feelings for this other man only lasted for a brief period but they were insanely strong and made me feel almost numb to anything else going on in my life that would normally cause me despair (the whole euphoric, "walking on clouds" aspect of limerence). However, even though my feelings for the other man were much more intense than those for my husband, at my core I would be more devastated at the thought of something horrible happening to my husband than to the other man. The best way I can describe it: limerence is a superficial feeling of falling in love. It's more obsessive as well as impersonal. When in love, you care about the other persons feelings and state of being more than you care about your own. When in limerence, you only care about yourself and being in the euphoric state.

Limerence, as you describe it, fits the definition of an infatuation to a T, no doubt amplified to some extent by your raging narcissism. 204.161.5.100 10:07, 23 October 2006 (UTC)
While I'm sure the free psychological evaluation is appreciated, perhaps you should visit WP:NPA. It would also be nice if you could stop trying to tell us how we feel. Let's stick to the research. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
My comments do not fit the criteria for a personal attack, particularly as they are intended as a serious explanation for her experience. Now, calling you a hypocrite because of your "let's stick to the research" when your comments are as venomous as mine, now, that might fairly be construed as a personal attack. 204.161.5.100 10:07, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
Saying someone has "raging narcissism" isn't a personal attack? Your self-described "venomous" comments were not meant to be helpful. As for me, accusing someone of making a personal attack is not a personal attack. At any rate, I see nothing constructive about discussing this subject any further with you other than to say I fully agree with the comments of Xerxes Oak, below. Fermium 04:31, 26 October 2006 (UTC)
Saying someone has raging narcissism as an explanation for a pertinent emotional experience is by definition not a personal attack, no. At any rate, if you fully agree with Oak's comments you have no problem with the current revision of the introductory section, and I will do likewise with the remainder.204.161.5.200 15:50, 26 October 2006 (UTC)

The Templates

Unilaterally removing dispute templates before any consensus has been reached or any revision even attempted is an egregious violation of wikipedia policies. Refrain, immediately. The bulk of the article can stay, it merely needs to be made clear that this is an obscure point of view based on the research of one woman, that is subscribed to only by an extremely small and uncredentialed (if quite persistent) minority. Keep in mind that in all fairness this article should probably be AFD'd outright:

If a viewpoint is held by an extremely small (or vastly limited) minority, it does not belong in Wikipedia (except perhaps in some ancillary article) regardless of whether it is true or not; and regardless of whether you can prove it or not. 204.161.5.200 01:55, 24 October 2006 (UTC)

Lots of hits on search engines for Limerence. Where is the evidence that this is "obscure" and only "subscribed to only by an uncredentialed minority"? I feel that way about Flat Earth Society, but it's still interesting and informative. Fermium 22:26, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
Lots, i.e. ~83000 or 6.5% as many hits as noted cultural phenomenon sweet zombie Jesus[1]. Dorothy Tennov, on the other hand, turns up under 1000, about as obscure as it gets. And the "evidence" you is ask for is that the burden of proof is on the one claiming that an article is accepted in academia and meets the criteria for being encyclopedic. Obviously. So where are the reputable, peer-reviewed journals? Where is the mention in major newspapers? Without those, this article only avoids AFD only by the grace and generosity of any sensible person who has the misfortune of being redirected here.—Preceding unsigned comment added by 204.161.5.200 (talkcontribs) 18:17, 24 October 2006 (UTC)
I'd like to know what brainiac came up with the idea of using search engine hit count to win an argument? Is this some kind of WP disease? I'm seeing more and more of it and it's weak, weak, weak. Jaguara 03:22, 13 December 2006 (UTC)

Refutation of NPOV and lack of sources.

A quick search of newspapers online reveal the following articles in major scholarly journals and major newspapers. It is important to note that not all Wikipedia articles are dedicated to majority opinions and "noted cultural phenomena." Limerence is an accepted concept in academia and the medical/psycological community at large. I refer you to the following evidence as yielded by a (relatively) quick search of newspaper historical databases and online scholarly journal archives (JSTOR, LexisNexis, eBrary, and ProQuest).

SCHOLARLY JOURNALS:
  • "Human Nature and History" by Donald E. Brown. Journal of History and Theory. Volume 38, No. 4 (1999) Tennov's book is cited on page 146, the concept of limerence is used throughout the article.
  • Journal of Marriage and the Family Volume 42, No. 3. Tennov's book was reviewed and critiqued anonymously.
  • "Lust, Attraction, Attachment: Biology and Evolution of the Three Primary Emotion Systems for Mating, Reproduction, and Parenting" by Helen Fisher. Journal of Sex Education and Therapy. The concept of limerence is discussed in the section on attraction and the relation to human biology. Fisher writes that theories of attraction hold that the frequency and duration of attraction vary in humans and cites Tennov along with other major research.
MAJOR NEWSPAPERS:
  • "Love: and Limerence" by Roy Seed. The New York Times. September 16, 1977, p. 51
  • "Letters; Limerence Inspires Verse Smokers' Memories" by Robert B. Sennisghilbert and M. Trachtman. The New York Times. Feb 5, 1980. p. C5
  • In Pursuit of Love: Three Current Studies; In Pursuit of Love Defining Love Obsession" by Dava Sobel. The New York Times. Jan 22, 1990. p. C1
  • "Crucible of Romance Yields a Book; New Book Charts Seas of Passion" by Andree Brooks. The New York Times. Feb 10, 1980. p. CN1
  • "Limerence (Romantic Passion) in the Eye of Its Beholder by Andree Brooks. The New York Times. Mar 2, 1999. p. WC2
  • "It's Hard to Give Up Control of the Kingdom" by Jack Lukes. The San Luis Obispo Tribune. March 7, 2004. The concept of limerence is discussed in the section on attraction.
Also, in the future, it is generally best if unsupported claims of NPOV and neutrality are not placed into articles "unilaterally and without consensus or discussion." Do not jump the gun on these claims without consulting with other concerned individuals on this page. Without a solid amount of academic debate among contributers to this article, sir, your unilateral brandings of this page are unsupported. sudoartiste 10:24, 24 October 2006 (PST)
You'll notice the handy "reputable" and "peer-reviewed" qualifiers I placed before "journals", yes? I don't think I would be amiss to add "in a relevant discipline" as well, which means that each of the three has at least two strikes against it. This substantiation is a joke. And showing that it is accepted in academia (which, again, you've failed to do) only demonstrates that it is encyclopedic enough to qualify as a paradigm, unless there were a consensus [derisive laugh], the dogmatic tone of the article would still qualify as POV. FYI, the "noted cultural phenomenon" is a sarcastic jab. 204.161.5.200 06:59, 25 October 2006 (UTC)
Links are needed so that the articles here can be subjected to scrutiny. Several of these appear to be descriptions of then-popular books rather than an evaulation of its contents. 204.161.5.200 06:59, 25 October 2006 (UTC)
The entire article is uncorroborated and dogmatic in tone. The burden is on THE ARTICLE to establish NPOV, and if that is clearly missing, it is the duty of any right-minded wikipedian to apply the tags. And I've asked for links before, without receiving them (even as feeble as the "scholarly" articles referenced here). 204.161.5.200 06:45, 25 October 2006 (UTC)
As an academic who followed a reference to Limerence, I found the material and the information very useful. The fact that the theory is disputed seems to me to be irrelevant. Many theories are disputed. For example, it is a respectable position to assert that all so called "facts" are theories that may indeed be proved to be incorrect. For example, we assert the law of gravity as a fact as so far the evidence has been consistent with the theory that explains (very well) the phenomenon that we observe. However, such certainty is based on the repeatability of experiments and there is no absolute certainty that this will continue. Tomorrow, it is theoretically possible that the phenomenon that the theory of gravity seeks to explain (for many practical purposes) will be found wanting. Consequently, the obsession with limerence being based on so called "facts" is fundamentally flawed. The first reason I have given above, but the second reason is related to psychological theory in general. There are many psychological theories and they are more or less supported by academics involved. However, there are many disagreements between different schools of theory. Some of the comment in the discussion on the entry on limerence seems to me to be based on the notion that there are certain established facts in some psychological theories which qualify them for inclusion in Wikipedia. This is a disputable argument and appears to leave certain individuals with the right to decide which knowledge is acceptable for dissemination.
The opening to the entry on limerence states the following: "Limerence is the name for an involuntary cognitive and emotional state similar to infatuation, posited by psychologist...". Nothing could be clearer, surely? It is a theory posited. If we are to eliminate limerence, then we surely must eliminate all psychological theory. I find it a little worrying, too, that there is much evidence of aggression, hostility and intolerance in the comments about limerence, sadly reminiscent of what can be found in bad tempered, and I have to say, male dominated discussion forums around the web. Limerence is a theory. Words are constantly being invented to help us to explain the world that we experience. Their value for people, whether they are social scientists, behaviourist psychologists, casual thinkers or lay people who would like to check a term and evaluate it will ultimately determine if any new words will establish themselves. Surely we do not need to adopt an essentially dictatorial approach to an entry on limerence. I suspect that there is something deeply unsettling for those who have written so venomously about the theory. It may be useful for them to reflect on their own motives and feelings to ascertain if they are indeed seeking to be objective. It is not very useful, is it, to try to "explain" complex human emotions by stating, for example, that they are the result of electrical impulses in the brain, or chemical interchanges, or hormonal imbalances. We need much more sophisticated theories for our massively complex human experience. Limerence might be one of them. Xerxes Oak 25 October 2006 (UTC)
  1. It's not the first three paragraphs (which I've already revised) that are the problem, it's the remainder. If you find those paragraphs to be balanced, we have no problem here. As for the hostility, my only defense is that the previous incarnation of the article was an affront to god almighty.
  2. In regards to reduction of psychological theories to physical phenomena, this is not only a useful tool but an integral one; behavioral theories must be solidly grounded by neurochemical explanations or else they are nothing more than flights of fancy.
  3. Epistemological musings aside, whether something is a valid paradigmn in that it is based on peer-reviewed psychological studies with sound methodologies is relevant to the criteria for inclusion in an encyclopedia. The transitory nature of empirical law is not.204.161.5.47 13:50, 25 October 2006 (UTC)

Summary

  1. '"Limerence" is a view held by a tiny minority, and almost none within relevant fields in academia. 83,000 hits on google is very, very few. No genuine scholarly articles discussing the concept have been provided. Thus limerence barely qualifies as noteworthy, if at all (perhaps as the "ancillary article" in the wikipedia policy concerning the views of small minorities).
  2. There is zero evidence supporting the "theory" of limerence. There easily could be. A simple study comparing the behaviors of so-called limerent individuals and those with short-term infatuations, for example, would suffice. Yet none has appeared in a peer-reviewed journal, indeed, none has even been attempted. Thus "limerence" does not qualify as a serious psychological theory. Anecdotal experiences cannot possibly establish limerence as a distinct emotion, and that's the only form of "evidence" that has been offered here.
  3. 'The original article was completely unacceptable. Exceedingly dogmatic in tone, it failed even to acknowledge the idea that limerence could be other than proven fact. Moreover, infatuation and romantic passion, established emotions, redirected to this unstable, unsubstantiated neologism.
Conclusion: the article will be heavily revised to bring in to accordance with wikipedia regulations concerning NPOV.
You are correct. This article depends too heavily on the work of Tennov and does an injustice by attempting to characterize the whole of inquiry into romantic/passionate love and infatuation under the title Limerence. Looking deeper into the issue than when I originally wrote the article it would have been best to focus on the psychological research done since Tennov's book was published. Since I do not presently have time, and people seem to think it is a pressing issue, if someone would like to update the article and move it under a more appropriate heading perhaps, here are references to a few article taken from psychology journals dealing directly with either the concept of limerence, defining it by a different name, recognizing as an distinct emotional reaction, and/or addressing its effects:
Hatfield, E., & Sprecher, S. (1986). Measuring passionate love in intimate relationships. Journal of Adolescence, 9, 383-410.
Hazan, C., & Shaver, P. (1987). Romantic love conceptualized as an attachment process. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 52, 511-524.
Hazan, C., & Zeifman, D. (1994). Sex and the psychological tether. In D. Perlman & K. Bartholomew (Eds.), Advances in personal relationships: A research annual (Vol. 5, pp. 151-177). London: Jessica Kingsley.
Money, J. (1980). Love and love sickness: The science of sex, gender differences, and pair-bonding. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
Sprecher, S., & Regan, P. C. (1998). Passionate and companionate love in courting and young married couples. Sociological Inquiry, 68, 163-185.
Weinrich, J. (1987). Sexual landscapes: Why we are what we are, why we love whom we love. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.
Peele, S., & Brodsky, A. (1975). Love and addiction. New York: Taplinger.
Steffen, J. J., McLaney, M. A., & Hustedt, T. K. (1984). The development of a measure of limerence. Unpublished manuscript, University of Cincinnati.
Hatfield, E., & Walster, G. W. (1981). A new look at love. Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley.
abexy 09:17, 3 November 2006 (UTC)
Wow, this has been a heated discussion – I’ll refrain from complicating it with my two cents worth, except to say that I find limerance a useful term. But I got to this page on the following link from ‘Eros’: “Limerance, an English term for this emotion”. This is, in my view, incorrect – limerance is NOT identical to Eros, although there is some overlap. I think the link is appropriate, but the way it is worded makes it sound as if limerance is all there is to Eros, whereas Eros includes all sorts of other shades of meaning, including (but not limited to) sexual attraction and joie de vivre. Genieinred 19:39, 3 November 2006 (UTC)