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Love is usually looked at as one universal feeling, when in reality, we all experience and participate in it through different ways. One will go through relationships different than another and one will experience heartbreak differently as well. Just like there are different personality types, there are different love types to go along with those personalities. A person can flow in between different styles or stay consistent throughout their love life embodying one.
In 1973, John Lee presented his theories of love in his book, Colour of Love. These love styles are broken down into two categories, the primary and the secondary. The primary styles of love consist of Eros, Ludus, and Storge. Eros can be defined as the erotic lover, someone who is sensual and really takes the time to observe beauty. They are also very touchy-feely people, who are stimulated through beauty and touch. Ludus lovers are the type of people that are interested in the excitement of a relationship. They are often referred to as players, people who love to “play the game.” The last primary style, Storge, can be described as those who value the time before a relationship, and really invest in getting to know someone before they become involved. They prefer to be friends first before starting a new relationship with someone.
The secondary styles of love are Mania, Agape and Pragma. Mania can be described as people who are a combination of Eros and Ludus. These people often tend to be dramatic, manipulative and hard to please, due to the strong characteristics of being a “player” as well as a sensual person. They are very intense people. Agape is defined as those who are a mix of Eros and Storge love styles. This is what many call “pure love,” resembling love of a parent of a pet owner. This is what many hope to embody in all aspects of life, because it mirrors a genuine relationship. The last, Pragma, is referred to as a merge of Ludus and Storge lovers. People who embody this style tend to be very practical and realistic in a relationship. They tend to be very cautious because of their practicalness.
With all styles of love, I can relate back to my own experiences and observations. One that sticks out and resembles the love I observe the most in my own life is Agape. In the lack of intimate relationships in my life, there is balance due to the “pure love” friendships and relationships I have. I have learned to sort out what is genuine and what is not, which has allowed me to make many relationships with people that intend on having mutual exchanges of good vibes. I also see this love style within my family, where many of them express nothing but sincere concern for my happiness and wellbeing. I also like to return that same practice to them, which is a very fulfilling feeling.
Another style I can easily point out in my experiences is coming across someone who embodies the Ludus style. They did leave me with bad experiences and a broken heart, which at one point forced me to take on the Pragma style, where I almost avoided any relationship after experiencing that.
It is definitely interesting to see how these different styles have played out in my own life as well as observing others in the way they exhibit these characteristics. What is most interesting is looking back through my observations, with this new insight, and seeing how one person affected another, who affected another. It truly shows how significant and influential this love style theory can be.
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