Kissing with closed eyes is a romantic gesture that lovers often experience during their intimate moments. It is something that we do so naturally that we may never stop to ask ourselves why we do it or even contemplate its significance. However, researchers have found that there is a science behind this romantic blink. In this article, we will explore the reasons why we kiss with our eyes closed.
The Origins of the Kiss
The kiss is a ubiquitous expression of love and affection in human societies. Anthropological studies suggest that kissing dates back to prehistoric times when our ancestors licked, sniffed, or blew into each other’s faces as a way of communicating. Ancient Egyptians are known to have engaged in kissing, and the Romans had elaborate kissing rituals, including the kissing of strangers’ hands as a sign of respect. Kissing in romantic contexts, however, did not become widespread until the Middle Ages.
The Benefits of Kissing
Kissing involves a complex interplay of sensory and hormonal responses that can produce a range of benefits for our physical and emotional health. Research has found that:
- Kissing activates the release of oxytocin, the “love hormone,” which can increase feelings of attachment, trust, and bonding.
- Kissing can reduce stress and anxiety by triggering the release of endorphins, the “feel-good” chemicals in the brain.
- Kissing can boost the immune system by exchanging bacteria that can help build up resistance to common germs.
- Kissing can also burn calories and tone facial muscles, making us look and feel healthier.
Kissing with Closed Eyes
One of the most distinctive features of romantic kissing is the act of closing one’s eyes. While it may seem more natural to keep our eyes open during such an intimate act, our brains have a logical reason for wanting to shut them tight. Here are some possible explanations:
1. Enhanced Sensory Experience
When we close our eyes, we block out visual distractions that could interfere with our sensory experience. Our brains can then focus on the sensation of touch and taste, which is essential for building intimacy and emotional connection.
2. Protection and Trust
Closing our eyes during a kiss shows that we trust our partner and feel safe and protected in their presence. It also helps us to tune out our surroundings and focus solely on the moment, deepening our sense of connection with our partner.
3. Cultural Norms
Finally, it’s worth noting that kissing with closed eyes has become a cultural norm in many societies. We learn from movies, TV shows, and other cultural representations that closing our eyes is an expected and desirable behavior during romantic kissing. So, even if we don’t consciously think about it, we may feel pressure to conform to this expectation.
Kissing with closed eyes is a fascinating phenomenon that has been observed and practiced for centuries. While there may not be a single definitive answer to why we do it, we can explore the possible reasons based on scientific research and cultural norms. Understanding the science behind this romantic blink can help us appreciate the beauty and complexity of human behavior and connect with our partners in a more profound way.
- Q: Why do people kiss with their eyes closed?
- A: Closing your eyes during a kiss helps you to focus on the sensation of touch and taste, deepen your connection with your partner and show that you feel safe and protected.
- Q: Is kissing good for your health?
- A: Kissing can have physical and emotional health benefits, such as reducing stress and anxiety, boosting the immune system, and increasing feelings of attachment and bonding.
- Q: Is it normal to not close your eyes during a kiss?
- A: While closing eyes during kissing is perceived as a normative behavior, whether or not to close your eyes during a kiss ultimately depends on personal preference.
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- Fisher, H. (1992). Anatomy of love: The natural history of monogamy, adultery, and divorce. New York: Norton.
- Moye, N. A., & Brown, R. P. (2007). Love and sex differences in physiological responses to a romantic Kissing manipulation. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 36(5), 595-602.
- Schneiderman, I., Zilberman-Hayoun, S., Leckman, J. F., Feldman, R., & Pelphrey, K. A. (2018). The neural development of empathy is sensitive to caregiving and early trauma. Nature Communications, 9, 1-12.