Could oxytocin – the brain’s love chemical – be the real ‘love potion #9’?

Editor’s note: Joyce M. Short is the author of a just released book, “Carnal Abuse by Deceit.” The book chronicles her life with a predator, the subsequent aftermath and her road to recovery. It also provides advice for victims and their supporters, and discusses the issues surrounding criminalization of rape-by-fraud. Joyce lives in New York City, where she’s a real estate broker, professional tennis instructor and a strong advocate for her community.

By Joyce M. Short

Does Love Potion #9 Really Exist?

The hit record written by Leiber & Stoller back in 1959, Love Potion #9, was originally recorded by The Clovers and published by the Aberbach brothers who owned Hill & Range Songs Inc. It’s been covered by over twenty five other artists since its original release. Although it’s a spoof on a chemical concoction that makes people fall in love, it’s not so far from the truth.

Romantic love has recently been shown to be a chemical addiction, similar to drugs and alcohol, but, when all goes well, it supports life instead of diminishing it. The chief chemical component in romantic love is oxytocin, a neurotransmitter produced in the brain that creates a sense of trust and cleaves us to our love interests. When we are betrayed, although we may feel abused and defiled, we can continue clinging to the offender because of our need to replace that “loved” feeling. The immediate cessation of the chemicals we recognize as love, may cause us to long for the treacherous offender just like an alcoholic craves a drink.

“No Contact” is all about getting rid of the desire and longing that comes with separation. The victim must be able to gain perspective that enables them to see the forest, not just the trees. The bigger picture, the moral deprivation of the betraying party, is far too important to allow ourselves to camouflage their actions by attributing good feelings to them. It is too easy for a predator to misuse our brain chemistry to wangle their way back into our lives.

Interestingly, the Aberbach fortune existed in the backdrop of the harm I was dealt. They owned a 50% share of Elvis Presley, 10% of the Beatles, and 75% of the music coming out of Nashville. My ex was harbored by an Aberbach widow as he abandoned my child and defrauded me of child support. The irony of oxytocin being akin to Love Potion #9 is particularly poignant for me.


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Need to know something if anybody has any knowledge on this.

I stated in a comment some time ago my ex was put in some institution by her parents somewhere around early teens. Far as I know she was in there for at least 6 months, and they put her there for either attempted suicide or threatening it. Ive been told that there is no way someone would spend that long in mental place just for suicide threat unless the doctor found something bad wrong with them. I was also told that while in there her parents were to come in once a week for counseling sessions, so obvious she was there longer than a week or two. I get the feeling she may have been diagnosed with something, and was probly put on medication and some things I looked up for bipolar meds it seems she may have gotten some of the side effects and she had severe acne as a teen, messed up menstrual cycles, and raised levels of testosterone, just wondering if anyone here knows about mental health places, cause im being told there is no way she spent more than a week in there unless a doctor found something bad wrong with her.

I have a friend whos wife had a complete psychotic breakdown and shes never been in one for longer than 3 months or so I think, she hears voices, sees things, thinks everything is a conspiracy, thinks she has conversations with God and demons, thinks she never married her husband that the whole thing was fake ect ect….Ive never seen that behavior in my ex, but still.

Dave – I can’t answer your question, but I have another question. Are you sure she was in the hospital that long? If she is the one who told you this, it could have been a lie.


Her stepmother is the only one who has confirmed to me that she was in an institution, she said she couldn’t remember exactly how long but that she was in there long enough that the parents were to come in weekly for counseling with their daughter, and that the mother only came to one session.

I have a feeling this family is attempting to keep something hush hush,,many families are like this, especially if something is wrong with one of them, they pretend like nothing ever happened.


What you”re describing sounds like a residential rehab for drugs or alcohol and is not uncommon, particularly for teen agers who could be suicidal. And parents would likely do their utmost to protect their child from exposure over private matters.



possible jm, but her and her stepmother never mentioned substance abuse, I believe she was around 13 at the time, and only suicide was mentioned, the state is not going to make someone stay in a mental ward for 6 months or more over suicide attempt or threat unless they find something bad wrong with you.

I can never get full stories, I know her father had to go to court over her once when she was a teen, when I found out I asked her about it, she said her dad went in a rage and kinda pushed her a bit and tore her room apart and she went to a family members house and they called the cops, I never found out what happened to him in court if anything at all, and she claims she cannot remember what even started the fight (not the first time she has made this claim) before I met her she got into it with him at a funeral and they didn’t talk for 2 years yet she claims she cant remember what started it.

Could have been some type of criminal or problematic behavior that the judge remanded her to rehab.

Depending on the circumstance, the courts have a great deal of leeway with youthful offenders. Their aim is to rehabilitate, not punish, to the extent possible. They’d be more likely to sentence her to a rehab facility rather than sending her to kiddie jail for a minor criminal charge. They could also insist on the cooperation of the parents.

And no, parents would not be readily forthcoming with this type of information, nor should they be. She’s an adult. What she shares with you is between you and her. They would be infringing on her privacy to divulge that sort of information to you.

What’s obvious is that your wife’s pattern of anti-social behavior did not begin with you. But right now, you’re in the process of trying to contend with it. And it sounds like there were some violent outbreaks that have taken place. When that occurs, it is best for everyone concerned that the level of tension be eliminated. Even if she is to be completely faulted for enraging you, the fact that you put yourself in a position to be enraged is problematic for your children.

The sooner you stop focusing on figuring her out and, instead, deal with your own separateness and your children’s issues, the better off you and they will be. It doesn’t really matter what got all of you to this point. What matters is how you all move forward.

Certainly, any attempt you make to make her wrong, will be met with hostility and defensiveness, no matter how wrong she is. For your children’s sake, don’t do so.




That’s possible too, thank you for the extra ideas, she told me flat out her parents had her put in there, then again that could easily be a lie.

As to enraging me, I agree with you, it doesn’t matter what she did, im a grown man, I should have more control of my emotions, as well as realize what she does and not continue to put myself in that position to be compromised.

And yes, any attempt no matter how nice or subtle that makes her look at fault, she will go on the attack in her defense, I am used to her doing this.

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