Oxytocin: The Bonding or “Cuddle” Hormone

For some time we have known that oxytocin is a bonding hormone.  It bonds females to males and babies and each other.  Worth knowing quite a bit about:

New studies are adding to a body of literature that shows oxytocin plays a key role in maternal bonding and social affiliation-what Taylor has labeled the “tend and befriend” response, as opposed to the “fight or flight” response. In line with years of animal research linking oxytocin to mothers’ ability to care for their infants, a study in the November Psychological Science (Vol. 18, No. 11, pages 965-970), demonstrates this association for the first time in people.


From another study we learn:

In addition, studies show that oxytocin in females, as well as the closely related vasopressin in males, is key to pair bonding.

“You first meet him and he’s passable,” Witt said of the phenomena. “The second time you go out with him, he’s OK. The third time you go out with him, you have sex. And from that point on you can’t imagine what life would be like without him.”

“What’s behind it?” she added. “It could be oxytocin.”

Since the release of oxytocin can be classically conditi