Friday, February 08, 2008

The Scale of Passion

I am going to spend Valentine's Day this year with a bunch of single people. In case you were wondering what kind of outing this will be, the invite for this party has the tagline: "VD is nasty." I had suggested a number of anti-romantic activities for it which were vetoed in favor of Karaoke. Which means there is a good chance that by the end of the night we will all be drunk and hollering along to Air Supply, some of us with tears running down our faces.

Now where was I?

Right, so you know how Elizabeth Barrett Browning said "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways." Well, Friends, you can now take a step back from having to memorize that poem or enumerate all the things about Pookie that make you tingle and express your passion in a quantitative way.

Let me offer you a crack at the Passionate Love Scale Questionnaire. This is a real questionnaire created by Elaine Hatfield (psychologist) and Susan Sprecher (sociologist) that is still used by professionals today.

Please don't ask me what kind of professionals, the mind reels at the thought. And I will do a follow up to this at some point, I promise. For an added layer of legitimacy (illegitimacy?) I will confess that this questionaire is ganked from a Time magazine article sent to me by CK. I will also confess that typing out these statements, even referring to a blank line, is mortifyingly embarassing, but not quite as nauseating as thinking about the Depeche Mode song, "Somebody." Although, if ANYONE sings that song at Karaoke next week I will probably pee my pants from laughing and then barf on the person next to me.

But I digress.

On to the Scale:


For each of the sentences below insert the name of your beloved in the blank and pick a number from 1 (not at all true) to 9 (definitely true). 5 is moderately true.


1. I would feel deep despair if ____ left me.
2. Sometimes I feel I can't control my thoughts; they are obsessively about ____.
3. I feel happy when I am doing something to make ____ happy.
4. I would rather be with ____ than anyone else.
5. I'd get jealous if I thought ____ were falling in love with someone else.
6. I yearn to know all about ____.
7. I want ____ physically, emotionally, mentally.
8. I have an endless appatite for affection from ____.
9. For me, ____ is the perfect romantic partner.
10. I sense my body responding when ____ touches me.
11. ____ always seems to be on my mind.
12. I want ____ to know me - my thoughts, fears and hopes.
13. I eagerly look for signs indicating ____'s desire for me.
14. I possess a powerful attraction for ____.
15. I get extremely depressed when things don't go right in my relationship with ____.

You then add up your total which will range from 15 to 135.

Elaine Hatfield has a pdf on her site which breaks the scores down into 5 categories. I am going to try to slightly reduce the bias by not including it here.

And don't worry, if your love is constant but not so intense, make that card and compose that poem, bring bottle of booze, a little gift - Pookie will be putty in your hands.

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