Over the past decade, evolutionary psychologists, neuroscientists, and pharmaceutical researchers alike have begun to shed fascinating new light on heartbreak. The forces that bind two people in union are powerful, but love’s dissolution is more potent still — a trauma to the brain and body that in some cases can be all but indistinguishable from mental illness.
For example, in a study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers found that of 114 Americans who had been romantically rejected in the 8 weeks prior to the study, 40 percent remained clinically depressed — 12 percent moderately to severely so.
“A heart broken from love lost rates among the most stressful life events a person can experience,” says David Buss, Ph.D., the author of “The Evolution of Desire: Strategies of Human Mating.” “It’s exceeded in psychological pain only by horrific events, such as the loss of a child.”
via MSNBC: Understanding a broken heart