Scientific Proof Justin Bieber Shouldn't Be Judged For His Romantic Missteps With Selena Gomez
Beliebers and Selenators, you might want to sit down for this. During a recent interview with Complex, Justin Bieber offered some revealing insight into his on-again off-again relationship with Selena Gomez. Since officially stepping out as a couple in 2011, Bieber and Gomez have been popular tabloid fodder, and the product of fervent debate among fans. Some people shipped these two hard enough to pen novella after novella of fan fiction, while others would proverbially boo and hiss at the pairing on Twitter due to the plethora of stories on arguments, breakups, and makeups.
In August, it was pretty much confirmed that the two were dunzo for good, but the famous ex-couple still makes their way into plenty a pop culture conversation. During his interview with Complex, Bieber compared the relationship to a marriage, but also noted that the intensity could lead to contention.
"I moved in with my girlfriend when I was 18. Started my own life with her. It was a marriage kind of thing. Living with a girl, it was just too much at that age...When stuff would happen, I would lose my freakin' mind, and she would lose her mind, and we would fight so hard because we were so invested in each other. Love is a choice. Love is not a feeling. People have made it seem in movies that it's this fairy tale."
I, for one, have never judged the relationship between these two. No, I'm not trying to portray myself as some kind of martyr (if you knew me personally, you'd know I am far from it), but my own past experiences and previous studies as a Health Science major in college always caused me to view this pop duo with an empathetic eye.
Bieber and Gomez were teenagers when they began dating, along with being each other's first serious relationship. It came as no surprise to me that their road to romance was a bit of a rocky one, especially considering that their every move was subject to a public magnifying glass.
What I'm saying is — regardless of how you personally feel about either pop star — you shouldn't be quick to judge their romantic woes. Need some evidence? Oh, I got you covered.
The Brain Doesn't Fully Develop Until The Age Of 25
During a 2011 interview with NPR, neuroscientist and author of the book Welcome to Your Child's Brain, Sandra Aamondt, spoke about research from various neuroscientists which showed that the brain does not complete its full development until the age of 25.
"So the changes that happen between 18 and 25 are a continuation of the process that starts around puberty, and 18 year olds are about halfway through that process. Their prefrontal cortex is not yet fully developed. That's the part of the brain that helps you to inhibit impulses and to plan and organize your behavior to reach a goal."
The inability to fully harness one's impulses can arguably lead to numerous regrettable decisions — like, say, peeing in a bucket. Moreover, the culmination of inexperience and lack of impulse control can be the perfect recipe for a relationship that is headed toward melodrama and heartache. I, personally, try to avoid engaging in reveries about my early days in the dating pool, as most of those experiences lead my 30-year-old self to an instant face-palm.
Love Is A Powerful Drug
You know that intoxicating feeling of unadulterated elation that envelops you when you first really, really, really like someone? It's called infatuation, and there is a scientific basis for it. According to studies in neuroscience cited by Psychology Today, the early stages of love release an onslaught of pleasurable neurochemicals that can make us feel as if we are on a natural high. While these feelings can leave us with an outlook that resembles walking on clouds (hi, cloud nine), infatuation and lust can also hamper inhibitions, cause fluctuating mood, and lead to reckless behavior.
As we accumulate experiences in the romantic world, missteps from the past can guide us in decision-making during the potent stages of infatuation, and lead us to a more conscientious place.
Bieber and Gomez were each other's first serious relationship, so it is a little more than understandable that things could become emotional and go awry.
First Loves Are Way, Way Too Real
Not to namedrop, but I'm about to. I had the honor of interviewing singer/awesome person, Vanessa Carlton, in July. She described one of the poignant tracks from her EP, Blue Pool, as being about the searing intensity that can only come from a first love — and subsequent heartache.
"Nothing cuts more deeply than when you are younger and it doesn’t work out...The first time is the worst — you will never feel that bad again."
She went on to note that timing and experience played a major role in the development of her relationship with her husband.
"Something is not gonna work out if the timing isn’t right. It’s just the way it is. It doesn’t mean that we are passengers in our lives, but it’s a huge thing with relationships...The timing of me meeting my husband was just perfection. I’m not surprised that that all came together the way that it did. If either one of us had met years earlier, I don't know if things could have ended up the way they are."
OK, this is not exactly backed up by science, but the sentiments surely resonate with various individuals experiencing — and looking back on — their first heartbreak. If the timing wasn't right for Bieber and Gomez, there was likely no way for their romantic spiral to head anywhere but down.
No matter what your age, love is a powerful emotion that can permeate every facet of your life. When things are going good, they're great; when they're going bad, it can feel downright crushing. Let's give both Bieber and Gomez some (a lot of) slack when it comes to their previous relationship. Clearly, both have learned a lot of lessons from the romance, and are continuing to mature both professionally and personally.
Images: Giphy (3)