You’ve just met someone who’s caught your eye, OR you’ve had your gazes on the same person for over a long time with fantasizing scenarios and you finally get into a relationship with them. Whatever the case, there are several stages one goes through in a relationship that you should know if you are new in this field.
There are seven major stages to a relationship which include infatuation (stage 1), talking stage (stage 2), officializing the relationship (stage 3), understanding the relationship (stage 4), conflict stage (stage 5), expectations (stage 6) and commitment stage (stage 7) to name a few.
Have you ever wondered which stage of the relationship you and your partner belong to? Read on to find out.
The initial stage of any relationship begins with “the spark”.
Usually beginning with “the first meet,” there are multiple situations and places under which you can meet someone, either online, through friends or in a club on a Saturday night, contributing to this stage.
This stage is symbolized by the intense physical attraction between you and them, and there is instant infatuation.
This is the time when you try your hardest to be able to get this person, and so you go out of the way to look your best at all times.
In this stage, we also often tend to overlook flaws and imperfections and only focus on the good.
This stage usually lasts from month 1 to month 3 of initial conversations. The initial time you spend with this person is the perfect time for you to get to know them better and understand them better.
Usually, after the 3-month mark up to the 6th month of meeting, you and the person you’re interested in are making an effort to get to know each other more deeply.
In this stage, you are trying to figure out what this person likes and what they dislike while understanding their ideas and opinions.
This is the stage where the filter starts to shed eventually, and both you and your partner are beginning to get more comfortable in expressing themselves.
While you’re still trying to look the best to impress your love interest, you also begin to put much less effort into it and begin to accept each other for what you are.
This stage is like a subsidiary or an extension to stage 1, but now you’re comparatively more comfortable with the person.
After about 6 months of intense attraction and instant connection, you and your person realize that you actually like each other and decide to officially start a romantic relationship.
This is the stage where you and your partner are extremely comfortable with each other, and there is deep trust between you and them.
This is also the time when you and your significant other decide to steam things up and take them to the bedroom.
However, this stage does not come with sexual intimacy alone. It also includes immense amounts of emotional intimacy.
You begin to deeply trust your partner and start respecting them for their weaknesses and strengths.
In this stage, you are much more open-minded to conversations about the relationship’s red flags and healthy boundaries. This stage usually starts after the 7-month mark and continues up to 12 months.
After about a month or two of dating, you begin to understand your partner much better. This is the time when you are trying to navigate through the relationship with your partner.
This stage lays the foundation for bigger questions that you might have from your partner, like, “where is this heading?” or “are you the right person?”
This stage in the relationship is almost like a premise to the trials and tribulations of a relationship.
It is often known as “the honeymoon phase” of a relationship, as you are still attempting to get to know your partner on a deeper level, and everything seems rosy.
In this particular stage, you start to actively voice your concerns about boundaries and begin to create a well-informed opinion about each other.
At the 6 month mark, after you start dating, you begin to notice conflicts and arguments in the relationship.
This is the stage where the swoony honeymoon period wanes off, and the real struggles of a relationship come to light.
Now, you begin to understand your partner more deeply and start to tolerate them for their flaws and imperfections willingly.
Since acceptance takes time, it is obvious why you and your partner butt heads over trivial things multiple times.
There would be moments when you find yourself getting worked up because your partner “can’t comprehend” why you chose to do things a certain way.
Poor communication usually results in these kinds of conflicts; therefore, it is very important that you explain yourself and your likings in the most sensitive and mature manner possible.
Voicing your thoughts is the key to making things work smoothly at this stage. A large chunk of these trivial arguments will not occur if you communicate with your partner properly.
However, it goes without saying that conflicts are just as important as they provide you with an opportunity to put your point forward and also understand your partner, thereby enabling the both of you to connect more deeply.
After 1 to 5 years of dating, things between you and your partner have stabilized.
You are still very much in love with your partner, and conflicts still occur, but now, you’re better at conflict management and risk aversion.
This is the stage where you begin to wonder if you want to take things to the next level and pop the question.
You’ve realized that the person you’ve been going out with understands you on the deepest level possible, and you apprehend and respect them just as much.
For you, they are your ideal partner and life without them would seem out of place.
For most committed long-term partners, that is usually the case; therefore, you try to imagine a full-fledged family with your partner.
This is the stage where both partners wonder when the other would propose something serious, and there is an air of anxiety regarding the same.
You tend to expect much more from your partner at this stage as you both have formed an impeccable bond.
After a long period of dating, you and your partner know close to everything about each other. You’ve developed a deep level of trust for each other, and now you want to truly commit to your companion.
Most couples get married after a year or 2 of dating, but it really depends on the couple as the institute of marriage has a diverse definition for various people.
This is the stage where some of you are sure you’ve found the person you want to spend your life with and propose a wedding to them.
You realize you want to grow with your partner and build a life with them. Usually, dating long-term before marriage is helpful in ensuring the foundation for the relationship after marriage is strong.
You are prepared to grow more and more every day with your significant other during this stage.
Every relationship is different, and the stage in which the relationship also differs from person to person.
However, broadly speaking, these were the major stages a couple goes through in their relationship before they solidify their relationship into something concrete.
Every stage in a relationship is a way to make you better at handling difficult situations and communication which will eventually help you and your partner live a happy life in the future.