The evidence is that throughout life we build on the scaffolding provided by our first relationships to find our emotional balance and link to others. A mother sings and softly touches her babies cheeks as she rocks him to sleep each night; he calms and his heart rate slows. He learns that voice and touch will soothe him, and eventually he can soothe himself just by calling up the memory of the singing and touching.
In this way we gradually develop automatic ways of managing emotion that carry into our adult love relationships. This process also build expectations about the ways in which emotional moments with our romantic partner will play out.
Sue Johnson, Love Sense