How much steady eye contact do you make with your husband – or even your kids?
I don’t think I make much at all, and I’ve been trying to improve so I can boost my oxytocin – you know, the wonderful hormone that helps us attach to our babies? Well, it is the same hormone that floods our system when we feel bonded with anyone.
Apparently, oxytocin makes us look into each other’s eyes more. The latest research hasn’t really attempted the reverse: Does looking into someone’s eyes increase your oxytocin or bond with them?
Regardless, we’re already bonded to our husband and children, so I’d bet my bottom dollar research would say that eye contact with our family members boosts our bonds with them.
Because betting your bottom dollar is super scientific.
So. All that to say, I’m taking the time to not break eye contact constantly.
Like when my husband comes home, and I’m cooking dinner? Yeah, that. I’m only glancing his way. Could I take even a solid minute to look him in the eyes and listen? Or even look while I’m talking?
Trust me, from a lover of all things delicious food, our marriages are worth way more than perfectly cooked dinner.
I shared some words of affirmation with him last night, and I had to talk myself up to looking him right in the eye and holding that gaze while I said it. Whew – why is that so hard!? Our connection was solidified.
The lover (bridegroom) in song of solomon tells his bride,
Turn your eyes from me; they overwhelm me. (Song of Solomon 6:5, NIV)
With my kids, I’ve been giving them more undivided eye attention, too. Having three kids means a very split attention span. They all want mommy for something, so when it’s their turn for my attention, I need to give it undivided.
That third baby that I’m worried will just have to hang along with everything? Eye contact.
That middle child who plays so well by herself because she has to? Eye contact.
That firstborn who loves one-on-one time because he started out mano a mano? Eye contact.
I’m turning my eyes back into my ears and my mouth, using them to listen and to speak.