Leaving your friends at the start of a romantic relationship is more common than you think (and it even has a name)

If you have a close friend who hasn’t shown any signs of life since getting into a relationship, don’t be too angry at him. This very common phenomenon even has a name: “boyfriend disease”.

This may have already happened to you. You fall in love with your partner and suddenly there is nothing else but him or her. As a good love obsessive, you no longer want anything more than to spend time with your loved one and, without scruples, cancel all the events that your friends organize for you. Then, a few months later, once the honeymoon (or breakup) is over, you contact your friends to see them again.

This phenomenon is not unique and often affects people who are starting a new romantic relationship. In English-speaking countries, it now has a name: “boyfriend’s illness”or “boyfriend disease.”

Invented by TikTok influencer and podcaster Tinx, “boyfriend disease” is a phenomenon of such magnitude that it was even the subject of an article in the very serious newspaper The Washington Post. According to its creator, boyfriend illness is likely to affect everyone, regardless of age, gender, and sexual and romantic orientation.


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♬ original sound – Tinx

A phenomenon that can be explained by science

How exactly is the boyfriend’s illness characterized? If you are at the beginning of a romantic relationship, or have a friend who is, several signs could alert you: you lose interest in conversations with people close to you, you no longer ask questions about them or their life, you cancel outings It’s the last moment to stay as a couple, and always share the opinion of your better half, even if his opinion goes against your values.

But whether you are suffering from this “disease” or whether it is a friend of yours, rest assured: in reality it is a perfectly normal reaction, which can also be explained scientifically.

Questioned by Washington PostAmir Levine, associate professor of psychiatry at Columbia University, explains that this “boyfriend disease” especially affects young couples because a new romantic relationship creates new connections in our brains.

“Human beings have many nuances, but in most cases there is one person at the top of the hierarchy. If something bad happens to you, there is one person you will call. It's your safety mechanism,” explains Amir Levine. “This means that when you meet a potential partner, you need to take a stranger and create a bond with him or her secure enough that he or she rises to the top of your attachment system and becomes your refuge. It takes a lot of effort and reconnection of neurological circuits to transform this stranger into a person of importance. »

By spending a lot of time together, new lovers activate their brain's reward system. The moments of intimacy or complicity that they spend face to face also allow them to produce oxytocin. Nicknamed the “love hormone,” this hormone produced by the hypothalamus plays a role in creating social bonds.

And although the link between oxytocin and romantic love is not yet entirely clear, scientists suggest that the hormone undoubtedly plays a role in attachment to your partner.

A risk of social isolation

But while it's completely normal to want to spend as much time as possible with the person you're in love with, be careful that this relationship doesn't permanently disrupt your entire social life.

Quoted by 7sur7, Line Mourey, clinical psychologist in Dijon, explains that it is important not to completely abandon friendly relationships in favor of the romantic relationship... especially since this can also damage it.

“By putting all your energy on this romantic bond, you put a burden on your partner, because now he or she must fill the missing friendly bonds. »

The psychologist also warns against the risks of control, isolation and violence, which are exacerbated in intimate relationships and when friendship bonds disintegrate. Hence the importance of preserving and flourishing your non-romantic relationships, even if you are in a relationship. “Friends are safeguards, they know us best and will be able to determine whether the relationship has a positive or negative influence. They are also there to raise the alarm. »

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Source: Madmoizelle

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