WHAT is affection really?

What I am about to write here is the collection of all the informations I gathered in the past few days as I was doing countless read and researches on this delicate subject. To simplify it, affection is the expression of care.

It symbolises security, protection, comfort and approval — vital ingredients in any relationship. When one partner/spouse is affectionate toward the other, the following messages are sent:
You are important to me. I will care for you and protect you.
I’m concerned about the problems you face and will be there for you when you need me.

A simple hug can say those things. And there are many other ways to show our affection: A greeting card or an “I love you” note; a bouquet of flowers; holding hands; walks after dinner; back rubs; phone calls; and conversations with thoughtful and loving expressions. All of these can effectively communicate affection.

Affection is, for many, the essential cement of a relationship. Without it, many feel totally alienated. With it, they become emotionally bonded. If you feel terrific when your spouse is affectionate, and you feel terrible when there is not enough of it, you have the emotional need for affection. Love and affection are an integral part of any intimate relationship.

From my countless reading on the subject, some said that affection is seen on the superhighway between your head and your heart. Affection is a deep, long-standing commitment to understand what your significant other’s needs are and the willingness to consistently strive to meet those needs. It is love in action and is the daily motivation to build a strong and lasting relationship with another human being.

It produces feelings of intimacy, security, significance, and respect in a relationship. Affection results in the tender feelings that are often called love. It is a learned behavior and for many people, takes a considerable amount of effort to achieve. We are naturally born with the ability and desire to love; affection takes work.

Then comes the next question. What Is Love?
Love is often mistakenly referred to as a feeling. Love at first sight is equated to a magical occurrence where destiny binds two individuals for life and they ride off into the sunset to live happily ever after. This theory works for those who live in the world of fairy tales, but leaves those of us who live with reality wondering what went wrong when the excitement of a new relationship wears off. Love is often blamed for the breakup of many a relationship with the chilling conclusion of, “I just don’t love you anymore,” or, “I just fell out of love with you.”

The simple truth is that love is not a feeling, but a choice. This type of love and the resulting affection serves as a foundation for a lasting, healthy relationship.
It is a minute-by-minute decision by both parties to remain committed to each other and treat each other in a loving manner. Love is expressed by a person’s actions, and is not dictated by one’s feelings. It is an attitude, a habit and a mantra. Love is best expressed when a person chooses to put another’s needs above her own.

Healthy relationships require constant nurturing. Love and affection are choices that strengthen a relationship and provide a lasting foundation that will weather the storms of life. By learning the needs of your partner and developing a consistent habit of expressing your love and affection for each other, you can experience a fulfilling relationship and serve as a shining example of the true definitions of love and affection. A