Generally, there are five phases or stages of a relationship. They are the Merge, Doubt and Denial, Disillusionment, the Decision, and Wholehearted Love. All relationships move through these five stages although not only once. Think of these stages not as stepping stones to an outcome but rather as a series of seasons that we move through in an eternal cycle. The first stage of a relationship is the merge which is also known as the honeymoon phase. But you have to understand what the phase is all about before you can conclude if you are in it or not. Does it last forever though?
WHAT IS THE HONEYMOON PHASE
It is the initial, heartfelt romance that often consumes a couple when they first get together, including an all-consuming joy in the presence of our partner and insatiable, passionate sex. The honeymoon phase can be a blissful, carefree period in a couple’s relationship. Both partners are just getting to know each other, and they can find little fault. Everything their new partner does, from how they eat to the stories they tell, is charming and endearing.
The honeymoon phase is like existing in a love bubble but like all bubbles, it can not last forever. It’s a phase, however, for some couples, this phase lasts for about a year. But eventually, it ends, leaving both partners needing to adjust to a new, more sustainable reality. Because it can seem quite unreal sometimes. However, some couples do not even experience this phase at all.
WHEN DOES THE HONEYMOON PHASE OCCUR
Generally, for almost every couple, the honeymoon phase occurs from the start of their relationship. There is just this fascination basically with the person in question, need I say “butterflies in the tummy”. This is the very reason the honeymoon phase is so intriguing. But it’s still too soon to know the partner’s full personality, with all its positives and negatives, the ups and downs, the onsets and offsets. However, in this stage, everything about this person seems just too perfect for you, like he or she could do no wrong.
HOW LONG DOES THE HONEYMOON PHASE LAST
For most people, the honeymoon phase lasts between six months and two years, but there is no unbendable rule. Basically, everyone takes as long as they take if you ask me. However, no one can predict the future to see how long their honeymoon phase will last, so the most important thing to do is enjoy every minute of it and take it one day at a time.
HONEYMOON PHASE OF A RELATIONSHIP
Although, some couples don’t have a honeymoon phase, or their honeymoon phase just happens to be cut short. However, there is no need to worry. Well, because having or not having that honeymoon phase doesn’t guarantee that you won’t have a healthy or long-term relationship. Basically, it’s temporal at best. When that overwhelming chemistry is not present, it may lead to partners getting to know one another slowly and being more realistic about the person in front of them and in some cases can cause an end to the relationship. Relationships with these beginnings tend to turn into a lasting love, with a honeymoon that gets woven in over time, rather than experiencing it all in the beginning and then having it fade away.
HONEYMOON PHASE PSYCHOLOGY
The human brain can not be easily fathomed. However, in this case, there are some signs though that can help you understand where you are in your relationship;
1. Your Body Does All The Thinking:
Although, your body can not necessarily think or talk but it definitely seems to have a mind of its own when you are in the honeymoon phase. Additionally, if you’ve been in this phase before, you’d know that this is true because all that partner has to do is walk into the room and your body responds immediately or need I say “quivers” not in fear though. You might find increased sexual arousal and frequency of sexual intercourse in general.
2. Increased Energy:
When you are in this you would want to be with this person, morning, noon, and night, without getting tired or worn out. Basically, this seems to happen in the early stages of most relationships because of the increased energy and vibe. According to research, in human physiology, during this phase, there is an increased energy spike because of the adrenaline. In addition to dopamine and serotonin is also in play.
3. Constant and Persistent Smiling:
Anytime you see this person, you just smile for no reason. Especially when both your eyes are locked or he catches your gaze. Although we should, ideally, be smiling at least once a day, you can recognize someone in the honeymoon phase because even just a look at their partner will bring on the smiling. That sort of smiling that’s contagious and addictive. Generally, you can just help yourself, it’s just one of the perks of the honeymoon phase.
4. Your Brain Goes Into Overdrive Mode:
Basically, you always seem super hyper. Not only do you “hyper focus” on your partner, but the feeling intensifies to a point that it seems intoxicating or as a lot of people would say, you’d feel “love drunk”. He or she becomes all you can think about basically. Love is a fickle creature, am I right?
5. Your Emotions Are Affected:
When the physical attraction or intimacy is so all-encompassing, so non-stop, so near-obsession, everything gets affected, emotions included. You’d know a huge emotional spike in general. The hormones can be so powerful, that they affect emotions in general. But this is a good thing. Because if the emotions are not affected at some point, you’d never evolve in your relationship. Leaving the relationship all but physical lust, desires, and need I say “friends with benefits”. Although, there is no denying that the honeymoon phase is quite essential in relationships. However, it’s ultimately fleeting. But do not worry, it has its perks too.
HOW TO KNOW WHEN THE HONEYMOON PHASE IS OVER
When the honeymoon phase is over, it may feel like a bubble pop, like something is just missing. However, this doesn’t mean that you have fallen out of love with your said partner. But you’d begin to realize that this person isn’t perfect, you see their imperfections, and inevitable conflict will start to creep in. In addition, you might start to feel irritated by your partner or notice things about him or her you didn’t in the past. Eventually, you might also start to fight more or have less sex. Questioning your relationship is normal during this time but don’t fret you’d surpass it.
The honeymoon stage is indeed a magical time because, at this point, your partner can do no wrong. In this period the levels of passionate love are very high and are as well characterized by intense feelings of attraction and ecstasy. Additionally, those strong emotions associated with passionate love have physical manifestations, such as butterflies in the stomach or heart palpitations. In addition, recent research has begun to explore how these feelings manifest in the brain, one’s physiology, and psychology. Using functional MRI, investigators have identified several brain regions associated with feeling the love. Individuals who tend to experience passionate love (typically brought on by pictures or thoughts of the beloved) show greater activation in the caudate nucleus, important in learning and memory, and the ventral tegmental area, central to emotional processing. Conclusively, these brain areas tend to be rich in dopamine, a neurotransmitter associated with reward and motivation. Additionally, another study found that when women who were madly in love thought about their partner, instead of a friend, they exhibited elevated levels of the stress-buffering hormone cortisol.
HONEYMOON PHASE FAQ’S
Where did this term originate?
The word “honeymoon” is a modern version of the Old English term, “hony moone.” This word first appeared in the 16th century, where it refers to the fleeting sweetness of a new marriage.
How long does it typically last?
There’s no set duration everyone is different. However, some experts say it’d span from 6 months to 2 years.
Does everyone have one?
Some people may never have a honeymoon phase, instead experiencing a slow-burning relationship based on mutual interests and pleasurable experiences.
How do you know if you’re in it?
It’s not hard to know if you’re in this phase. You’d feel extreme intensity and influx of emotions. You always want to spend all your time with each other, and intimacy between you is new, passionate, and exciting.
Does it have to end?
Yes, it does. Although, this phase is necessary for forming your relationship, but it can’t last forever.
What can you do to keep this energy going?
Accept that the honeymoon phase isn’t sustainable. Then focus this energy on “creating a future together where you are aligned and working while working on your communication, connection, commitment, fun, growth, and trust.