Love Disorder — defining the condition



Director Mike Traylor requested I provide a definition of Love Disorder to accompany the play:


Relationship Disorder, or “Love Disorder”, as it is commonly known, is an anxiety disorder in which the authentic desire for human intimacy clashes with the survival impulse to control, producing an emotional fog that clouds the nervous system, causing perfectly intelligent people to behave absurdly.


Symptoms may include:

  • The inability to say what you mean
  • The inability to act on what you say
  • The inability to ever resolve anything
  • The acute prolonging of clearly unsatisfying partnerships
  • The blind overlooking of potentially satisfying ones
  • The dominating urge to fulfill gender-based roles:

o   the female role of “domesticator”

o   the male role of “protector”

  • The propensity to re-enact one’s parents’ relationship even as one heartily disapproves of it.


Risk factors include:

  • First dates
  • Getting to know each other
  • Sex
  • Cohabitation
  • Marriage
  • Separation
  • Love




There is as yet no proven treatment for Love Disorder.

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