Love is such a beautiful feeling that it makes the whole world seem a much nicer place to live in, atleast for the first few months/years. Wondering why I added the last phrase? The reason is that a relationship goes through a number of phases before being strong enough to culminate in marriage. Most of the couples do not realize this and believe that the honeymoon phase will go on forever. This is definitely not true and the reality dawns upon the partners only after they have spent a considerable time with each other. This is when they have to become practical and work together to sort out the problem. If they manage to do this, they remain together forever. If they don’t, the result is a break up.
Stages of Romantic Relationship
All the romantic relationships go through a number of stages, before being culminated into marriage. In the following lines, we have provided information on the usual phases of a relationship.
Initial Stage (Romance)
The initial stage of a relationship is when two individuals have just come together. At this point of time, both of them see the world through rose-colored glasses. You love everything about your partner, even the most irritating habits somehow seems nice. He/she seems to be the perfect person in the world, who cannot do anything wrong ever. The whole world revolves around your partner and you hardly have time for anyone else. Infact, nobody else, not even your best friend, seems important at the moment. As the effects of the first stage seem to wear off, you shift to the next stage.
Eye-opener Stage (Reality)
After a considerable time has gone by, your partner does not seem so perfect after all. Slowly and gradually, the negative aspects of his/her personality start surfacing. Both the partners start behaving more like themselves and the ‘best-behavior at all times’ thing goes into the drain. Now, you don’t like spending the entire time with your partner and infact, feel the need for space and freedom. It is the time to go back to the other people in your life, including your best friend. You concentrate more on correcting the bad habits of your partner, which results in constant nagging. This is amongst the most crucial phases of a relationship, which can either lead to a strong and mature relationship or a break up.
Stability Stage (Maturity)
If you have successfully managed to pass the ‘eye-opener stage’, the road ahead will become much smoother. In this stage, both the partners realize that their so-called ‘better half’ is a normal individual, with positive as well as negative aspects. From the ‘I will change you’ concept, you come to ‘I accept you as you are’ concept. The idea of perfection slowly begins to dissolve and acceptance starts gaining ground. The partners start thinking practically and realize that adjustment is the key to a successful relationship. Still, the transition is not so easy and the slightest slip can make them go back to the second stage.
Commitment Stage (Totally Practical)
If a couple manages to maintain the maturity stage for a considerable time, without slipping to the previous one, commitment is the most obvious result. By this time, they have totally accepted each other, without any efforts at brining about any change. You realize that partners complement each other and not complete each other. Minor tiffs are usual and infact, necessary for keeping the spice in the relationship alive. However, the ‘we break off’, ‘you don’t care for me’, etc phrases do not form a part of the relationship. This is the time when you love your partner for who he/she actually is and not for what you think he/she is.
Marriage Stage (Romance once again)
All the successful relationships end in marriage. The partners have gone through all the ups and downs and no longer live in the world of fairytale or bookish romance. They know that life is not picture-perfect and find love in each other’s company. Marriage brings about the phase of honeymoon, when all the romance of the first stage comes back once more. The only difference is that this time the partners are mature and the rose-colored glasses have come off. Though there might be slight problems because of the added responsibilities and living together 24X7, none will be too big to handle. It’s the time to enjoy the results of the efforts both of you have taken to bring the relationship to this stage.