In Chemistry there are three common types of bonds:
Ionic - don’t break down, opposite attract, strongest
Covalent - sharing of electrons. Like likes like
Hydrogen - the weakest bond, strong initial attraction, not easily held
I don’t really know or care much about chemistry though I am sure if I did, it would be a fascinating study as pretty much everything in life involves chemistry.
Really the only chemistry I have ever been interested in is the kind of chemistry that we talk about when we talk about two people in close proximity to each other and the chemical and physical reactions that occur.
Now that is a science lesson I have always been up for...
It has always fascinated me how some people just light you up and others, though they may be more suitable partners, better looking, kinder people, more stable, just don’t.
What is that “it” factor that makes us weak in the knees, lose our common sense and go absolutely gaga over someone?
This is a chemistry on a whole other level.
I am reading a book now about chemistry and the author made reference to bonding, the chemical process by which certain molecules attach themselves to other molecules. And she used relationships as examples of each of the most common bonds.
Ionic is the “opposite attracts” kind of bonding. In chemistry, this is where opposite charges of the electrons are attracted to each other. And in our human case, where we have little in common with another person, but we are pulled toward them just the same. We are able to enjoy all the different they are from us and that interest moves us toward that which is very different from us. And if this bond forms, it tends to be the most stable and strong. Apparently, if you are attracted to someone very different from you, and allow that connection to occur, and well bond, it is the basis for a very stable and strong bond.
Covalent bonds are more of a “like attracts like” kind of bond. In this type of bond, there is a sharing of electron pairs between atoms. Relating this to us much more complex organisms, we tend to like and be attracted to people who are similar to us, people we share things in common with. This would be the next most stable bond. Having things in common, shared ideas, shared beliefs, shared interests, seems to say that this helps provide a stable foundation for relating.
Hydrogen bonds are more like “love at first sight” kind of bonds. You are attracted to the person because they light you up sexually or emotionally or physically, or all the above all at once. I like to call this the Brad Pitt effect. I mean what is not to love about Brad Pitt? He is handsome, intelligent and has a great amount of sex appeal...and so any woman graced with his presence would more than likely be swooning for sure, swearing that he was her happily ever after. But then you find out that he isn’t kind to waitstaff, chews with his mouth open and supports a political party that is loathsome to you (none of these things are actually true about Mr. Pitt by the way - I just needed to have something to call him out and it is hard to find anything negative to say about Brad...except his name, I kinda loathe the name Brad...no good reason, just do not like it...If I ever meet Mr. Pitt, I shall think of an immediate nickname for him so as not to break the hydrogen bond that would form instantaneously, you can be sure!).
As you can guess these hydrogen bonds are the weakest because they break as soon as you get more information. He is hot and handsome and funny but then you see him behave in an ugly manner toward your dog, or he picks his teeth incessantly, he doesn’t read or even care to discuss books with you, he doesn’t exercise and hates being outdoors, he loathes cats. And poof, it suddenly doesn’t matter that you were head over heels 20 minutes ago, now you can’t stand the fucker.
I find this chemical analysis helpful in an evaluating dating companions...which kind of bond am I feeling here?
Opposites attract but there will be work involved?
Similar interests make the going easier?
Love at first sight but with the knowledge that this fragile bond is easily broken when the reality of who you think you love comes to pass?
Well if chemistry has anything to say about what course you might want to take, it would seem to make a strong case for opposites attract. And I think that this is harder done by most of us because you have to actually respect the differences and find a way, a mutual way to discuss and mature beyond the “if you aren’t like me, you are against me” mindset that pervades our society at pretty much every level.
I can tell you that I have been a hydrogen bonder for sure! Most especially in my youth...which has lasted well into my 50s. I am a writer so I write stories, on paper, on the screen but mostly in my head...like all the fucking time. So when I meet someone who WOWs me initially I tend to ascribe to them all sorts of feelings, ideas, morals, character traits and attributes that I have no fucking clue whether they possess or not. So when they inevitably begin to exist more in reality and less in my fairytale mind, the result is chemical reaction, bond broken, heat exchanged...relationship kaput. And usually fireworks...not the good kind.
So I am giving some thought to the like attracts like, and opposites attract and going to do my best to let that whole love at first sight thing go. I mean I have been trying to do that for years, with limited success. But now chemistry gives me two good reasons to try something new if I want a stronger more lasting bond than what I have been getting.
I am all ionic and covalent from here out! Fuck hydrogen!
Someone please remind me of this science supported decision the next time I meet...HIM! Seriously, please, remind me of chemistry, bonds and what the fuck I am doing to change my relationships for the better. And please, for the love of all that is holy and good, remind me of the volatility of the breaking of a hydrogen bond...I don’t mean recite to me all my past errors (no one has time for that), but please remind me that while the bond is instant and complete, it is delicate and unstable. And when it breaks, a hydrogen bond becomes not unlike a hydrogen bomb...
I need the reminder, because for the life of me when I am in that heady state of initial bonding, I do not remember at all the level of destruction it will level in short order.
Just yell “Ionic” or “covalent” at me! I swear I will get your meaning in a way that I have not before.