The stages of love in relationships

In this article, I will explain the three key stages of love in relationships. It is essential to understand what changes are occurring in your body at each stage and how they influence the way you perceive your partner.

“We are most alive when we’re in love.”-John Updike

The first stage: Infatuation

The first stage of any relationship is infatuation. This is the phase when everything is perfect when you are happy and feel complete. When you first fall in love with someone, you experience something higher than you ever thought you could.

Contrary to what you might think, when you first fall in love, you fall in love with yourself. You fall in love with the things that you admire about yourself, with your values, your beliefs, and your desires.

You fall in love with the similarities you and your partner have. You fall in love with parts of yourself that you might have forgotten about and your partner successfully reminds you of.

You might think your partner is perfect. This is the result of your inability to see enough of the reality. As endorphins fly through your body, you see only what you want to see. You are so happy and in love that you often ignore the reality in front of you and decide not to deal with it.

In this phase, you feel an enormous physical attraction and passion towards your partner that comes effortlessly. This is the most intense phase of the relationship.

The infatuation stage cannot last forever. Our body starts to naturally produce fewer endorphins as we become more familiar with each other. And this is scientifically normal; human beings cannot live with an excessive amount of endorphins forever.

The intensity that you once felt begins to fade as a result of endorphins levels decreasing. There are many couples that break up as soon as the infatuation stage ends.

“The art of love is largely the art of persistence.”- Albert Ellis

Should this be the end of your love story?

As you already know, not everyone makes it through to the next phase of love. The natural process that occurs in our body is not understood by many. They will look for someone else that could make them feel the same emotional intensity and passion they once felt in the infatuation stage.

When your endorphins level return to normal, you start seeing realities that you consciously or unconsciously chose to ignore. Although you might think that your partner deceived you, the truth is that you ignored all the red flags even though they were exactly in front of you.

Let’s say you saw your partner speak badly to a friend or family member.  Even if this says a lot about his behavior and how he will eventually treat you, you will ignore this reality. You will blame the other person for your partner’s behavior, accepting his excuses, justification, or explanation for treating the other person poorly.

If you find yourself in this phase right now, analyze the situation and try to clearly and objectively think if the person in front of you is the person with whom you want to be.

The infatuation phase might seem like a big investment, but in the long term, you will we thankful to yourself for your decision. I know how hard it is to give up on all of those nice memories and feelings that you once felt, but there is nothing worse than living years in pain and sorrow.

 

“Cry. Forgive. Learn. Move on. Let your tears water the seed of your future happiness.” – Steve Maraboli

The second stage- The transition stage

The transition phase is the most difficult phase of any relationship. As your endorphin levels are back to normal, your reality will become more clear and you will start to discover all your differences.

The transition stage could be called ‘the negotiation stage’. In this period, you and your partner will use your communication skills to discuss your differences and potential problems and reach a resolution together.

This stage could easily take a negative path if you (or your partner) are not willing to work out your differences. In this case, the transition will take longer or will never finalize.

The transition stage is the ultimate test for your love and relationship. This is when you have to decide if someone is good for you or not.

Usually, this stage cannot be finalized before you moved in together. And here is why:

  • Let’s say your partner plays video games in his free time and you don’t. Whenever you see each other you do things that you both enjoy, so you don’t acknowledge that his hobby could represent a problem. Once you moved in, you realize he spends a considerable amount of time playing video games and this begins to irritate you.
  • Likewise, let’s say you are spending hours to get ready before a date with your partner. He never thought that this could be a problem when you were living apart. Once you moved in, he needs to plan his time around your rituals. and he finds this an inconvenience

I could go on and on about this, but I hope you see the pattern there. That is why it is important to live together and really get to know each other at this stage of your relationship.

Only if you are able to discuss your differences and find a way to solve your problems you will get to the most important and final stage, the true love.

“Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue, a wonderful living side by side can grow if they succeed in loving the distance between them which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky.”- Rainer Maria Rilke

Final stage – True love

To everyone’s surprise, there are only a few people who can reach this stage. Even within marriages, people find themselves in a never-ending transition stage.

The couples who cannot pass the transition stage, most likely have committed too early ( in the infatuation stage). Those who commit in the infatuation stage usually have a very tough and long transition phase and they very often fail to reach the final stage of love.

How does true love feel like? When you truly love someone you feel calm, peaceful, and connected. The intense passion and attraction that you felt in the infatuation stage are replaced by intense happiness, completeness, and acceptance.

“The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even heard, but must be felt with the heart.” — Helen Keller

Final thoughts

Now that you understand the stages of love, remember to enjoy each stage and recognize and accept that infatuation cannot last forever and be prepared to embrace the transition stage. Once you have worked out your differences and learn to accept each other completely, your connection will reach a level you have never imagined.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to answer them.

All the best,

Yoana,

lovenote-4u.com

  (Accredited Counsellors, Coaches, Psychotherapists and Hypnotherapists)

For counselling and coaching appointments scan the QR code or press here.

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28 thoughts on “The stages of love in relationships”

  1. Great job on to the post!.
    I have not come across this topic in a long time. Does it get discussed as much?. We do need to understand the stages, and what happens in each stage that will lead to a connection between the two. You did do a good job depicting that here.
    Have you had any personal experience at all with this?

    Reply
    • Hi Ashraf,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I am not entirely sure how much the topic is discussed, but I know that a lot of people fail to understand the differences between each stage, especially when they are young and inexperienced. As everything is easy and intense in the infatuation stage, many will think they can feel the same forever, without understanding the normal processes that happens in their bodies.

      In terms of personal experience, I found myself in the transition phase, without being able to reach the final stage, due to lack of communication, misunderstandings and unwillingness to work out differences and ‘negotiate’.

      I am glad you enjoyed my post and I hope I will see you back here soon.

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  2. Hi my name is Marlon. I was reading your Content about Stages of Loves.. and it is really interesting. And I have a question, the first is: How long is the lifetime of each stage?

    Reply
    • Hi Marlon,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I am glad you found the article interesting and useful.

      To answer your question, it usually depends on how quickly the couple progresses their relationship. The infatuation stage usually last for a minimum of 6 months to 2 years, depending on the couple intimacy level, the frequency they see each other and other various factors. The transition phase should not be longer than 6 months, but as I mentioned some couples feel stuck here for a longer time and in some cases, forever. And the final stage, of course, should last forever if both partners continue to invest in their relationship.

      I hope this clarifies your question. Let me know if you still have any questions.

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  3. Another insightful article.
    You have explained the transition stage and it criticality to further development of relationships so well. I think this stage is the most critical factor in determining whether the relationship will succeed or not. I’ve seen couples get stuck in this stage for years.

    Reply
    • Hi Ali Reza,

      Thank you for your comment. I am glad to see that you enjoyed my article. I cannot agree more, the transition stage is the determining factor in any relationship and as you said, there are many couples stuck in this stage.

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
    • Hi Russ,

      Thank you very much for your support. I am happy to see that you’ve found my article informative and interesting.

      Wish you all the best,

      Yoana

      Reply
  4. It was good to read your post about the stages of love. It’s funny how the journey is different for everyone. It’s very true that once a couple lives together, there are more obstacles to face. It also can be fun, if they think of it that way. Thank you

    Reply
    • Hi Jolene,

      Thank you so much for your comment. I couldn’t agree more with you. Although couples could face more obstacles once they live together , they can also make the most of it and face everything with a smile on their face and good humour. Life is what you make it!

      I hope to see you here soon
      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  5. You did a great job Yoana! I believe that this is the information that can’t be find on the web easily and you decided to share it with others for free, that’s really great!
    I didn’t know much about importance of love in relationship but I’ve been always interested to know more about this topic and your comprehensive guide helped me a lot. I don’t know if you wrote this post 100% by yourself or got help from other sources as well, anyway, it has really brilliant information which convinced me to share it with my friends on social networks.
    I think, the Internet needs more quality posts like yours these days, especially when we see a lot of crappy ads and scams about this topic. You can’t read a post easily on a website without seeing tons popups but your site and post is an ideal example of a quality article which is not covered by annoying ads, has very useful information and lets readers enjoy reading every piece of it.

    Thank you again and I wish you continue providing such that quality information in the future which turn the Internet and blogs into a better place to surf!

    Best,
    Ali

    Reply
    • Hi Ali,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I am glad to see that you decided to share my content with your friends.I really appreciate the support. I write the content on my own , inspired by the books I read. I also have a Counselling Skills Diploma and have studied Psychology in university, which provided me with knowledge regarding human behaviour.

      Hope to see you here again.

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  6. Very interesting article, in-depth and useful to readers.
    Love the structure of this too, kept me interested and wanting to read on which for me is a key tactic, congrats 🙂
    Thanks for writing and sharing this with us all!

    Reply
    • Hi Jason,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I am glad you enjoyed reading my article, finding it interesting and useful.

      Hope to see you here soon.

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  7. Wow! I must say this is the best article I have read so far in the matters of love. Your article has really opened my eyes to a lot of things.

    It has always baffled me why two people you see to be madly in love after some time suddenly fall out, it gets really bad when they even go as far as hating and despising each other.

    It is clear now that they must have been in the infatuation stage and when all the puffy dovvy loving worn out everything fell apart.

    But what I would like to know is if you can give an estimate as to when someone can know they have passed through the infatuation and transitioning stage to be able to make the right commitment?

    Cheers

    Reply
    • Hi Queen,

      I am very happy to see that you enjoyed reading my article. I am very thankful to see that you categorise my article as the best you read in matter of love.

      To answer your question, when you move from infatuation phase to transition phase you will feel a decrease in intensity and passion and you will start to notice things that you don’t like about your partner that you haven’t noticed before. I believe everyone deep down knows when they have passed transition stage and reached true love. As I described in my article, when you reach the final stage you will feel calm and peaceful. You will accept your partner for who he is and you will not seek to change him anymore. You will feel a certainty that he is the right person for you and that together you can pass any obstacle.

      I hope this clarifies your question. Let me know if you have any other questions 

      Kind regards,

      Yoana

      Reply
  8. Thank you so much for sharing this great article. I felt so excited when I saw the title of your article. I relationships a highly interesting topic. I have read the book: ‘the 5 love languages before’. Do you know that boo?  It is a very interesting book as well and speaks about your ability to receive love.

    I have never seen a relationship put in 3 categories like you did and It gave me much clarity to structure I like that. I agree with you and I think that many people stay in the transition phase. It makes much sense as well as relationships are not particular easy and can require hard work.

    You have definitely brought some insight to my world today and I like to thank you for that.

    Best wishes Jude

    Reply
    • Hi Jude,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I did not read the book but I definitely will at your recommendation. I have a few books waiting for me to read on my Kindle.  I will add this one to my list. 

      I am very happy to see that my article gave you clarity in relationships and how they evolve and that you enjoyed reading it.

      I hope to see you back here. 

      Wish you all the best,

      Yoana

      Reply
  9. Thanks for a fun article. Reading through stirs up memories of situations with previous partners typically where we would have been stumbling into the transition phase and the red flags that were previously ignored start flapping violently in the wind. On deeper reflection I also recall long periods of my earlier years when I stayed infatuated with someone long after the relationship had dramatically ended and that lingering infatuation made it difficult to form another meaningful relationship. I realize now, having read your article that had the earlier relationship lasted maybe a little longer, long enough to get past the early infatuation stage then maybe, just maybe I would have been easier for me to adjust and accept when the relationship ended. And then successfully move on. Best regards, Andy

    Reply
    • Hi Andy,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I am very happy to see that you have found my article interesting and helped you understanding past feelings and behaviours. As you said, many people(included myself) have ignored reg flags in the infatuation stage. Also, there is hard to forget someone with whom we ended the relationship in the infatuation phase, as we find it hard to move on from the emotional intensity. 

      I hope to see you soon here and wish you all the best,

      Yoana

      Reply
  10. In every relationship knowing if both parties are matched each other or I would say compatible is very important in the whole sequence for things to work out…Knowing if  his the right one is one of the important stages in the context of a love relationship as it most time the decider of the realtionship.

    Reply
    • Hi David,

      Thank you very much for you comment. I agree with you, compatibility plays an important role in a relationship. 

      Wish you all the best,

      Yoana

      Reply
  11. The love relationship is one of the most complex relationship types among all and in it you’ll experience attraction, dating, disappointment, stability and, finally, commitment. Knowing if he’s the right one is a very complex stage of the whole matter as one mistake could end up badly, thanks anyway for sharing hope this article helps others as it has helped me.

    Reply
    • Hi Feji,

      Thank you very much for your comment. I couldn’t agree more with you. I am very glad that you enjoyed the article and it has helped you.

      Wish you all the best,

      Yoana

      Reply

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