Worrying that your relationship is suffering from the demise of the honeymoon stage? Don’t worry, your relationship may just get better with age!
There is no hard and fast rule about how long the honeymoon period lasts. It could be a couple of months, it could be a couple of years. However, there is no dispute as to what exactly it is. It is that sickly sweet period of time at the beginning of a relationship where you can’t keep two people off each other.
They are so utterly and disgustingly in love that they can’t spend any time apart and can’t see the merest fault in the other. You could tell them that their other half is a serial killer, and they’d still find it endearing!
The end of times
It can come as a bit of a shock to the couple in question then, when they have been so firmly ensconced in this manner, to witness that loving feeling begin to fade. And when it begins to fade, it does so at an exponential rate. But it certainly isn’t all doom and gloom. Yes, the “being in love” part of the relationship may be dwindling, but that’s when the actual “loving” part of the relationship starts to come to the fore in its place. [Read: Taking it slow in a relationship – What’s the right way to go about it?]
Why you shouldn’t be scared when the honeymoon stage ends
The following list describes some of those signs that the honeymoon period is indeed coming to an end, but more importantly, also explains what these signs mean in the broader context of your relationship as whole – and how they can actually be a good thing.
#1 Having a gas. Okay, the example of farting in front of each other might be at the cruder end of the personal habit spectrum, but it nonetheless makes a good point. The fact is that there comes a point in a relationship when you stop holding it in.
Whereas previously, you would have suffered stomach cramps with heroic endurance in a desperate bid to keep your good standing, trying to impress eventually has less importance. And that’s a good thing. It shows that not only do you feel comfortable with each other, but that you are at last comfortable with yourselves. Enjoy the freedom! [Read: 13 unique and gross things you do that build intimacy with your partner]
#2 All hung up. Do you remember when you were constantly on the phone to each other, and in those brief moments that you weren’t, the popping tones of newly arrived text messages were constant? Well, that may have slowed down to a point where you’re both communicating with each other at a far slower rate – at normal punctuations in the daytime routine.
This isn’t something that particularly needs to be mourned, however. All it means is that the desperate need to remind the other of your presence is no longer quite so insistent. And let’s face it, you’re probably being far more productive now that you’re not on the phone 24 hours a day.
#3 Playing it down. It is likely the case, when the honeymoon period starts to fade off into normality, that you don’t quite take the same level of care of yourself and your appearance. Not that it’s acceptable to start showering with a can and wearing the same pair of underwear for a week at a time. That’s foul in any circumstances.
Maybe the three-hour-long meticulous grooming campaign you used to ensure upon has suffered somewhat. And that’s not a bad thing, as long as you make at least some effort in the presence of your significant other. It’s time to start being comfortable with yourself and your partner and enjoying the real boons of true love. [Read: 13 relationship mistakes new couples make all the time]
#4 Honesty is the best policy. I doubt there’s anyone who hasn’t been in the situation where they’ve tried a little bit too hard to impress a potential partner during the early stages of the relationship – pretending you love Vietnamese food, for example, because it’s one of their favorites when you actually abhor it. That’s all fine and well for a few months or so, but do you really want to maintain that pretense for the rest of your born days? Of course not.
Loving someone rather than being in love with them means you finally get to explain your likes, wants, and needs without any trepidation or hesitation. Yes, that might mean the honeymoon stage’s over – but I’d say that was a pretty fair trade. Wouldn’t you? [Read: 8 taboo topics you should avoid in a new relationship]
#5 Happy is as happy does. Of course, you don’t want to give off any negative vibes when you’re in the honeymoon period. You suck up any misadventures in your current life story, get on with things, and put on a brave face. But this is where true love, fostered over a period of time, kicks the whole honeymoon period thing into touch. Sharing is a very important part of love, and the whole act of being able to admit to unhappiness, and helping/being helped through it is what love is all about.
#6 Save the tales. That whole thing that you do during the honeymoon period where you’re constantly trying to impress the apple of your eye with tales of how wonderful you are, well, that can stop now. If they love you, they’ll love you for who you are, and this is one ending to the honeymoon period that pretty much everyone is probably happy about.
#7 PDA oblivion. A dead giveaway as to the demise of the honeymoon stage in your relationship is the sudden absence of public displays of affection. This can be a point of contention if one of the couple has a particular penchant or need for PDAs, and it’s something that easily be righted.
But if it’s entirely mutual, then there’s nothing to worry about. Just accept that things have moved on, and as you’ve become more comfortable with each other, that need to advertise your togetherness is less pressing. Not a bad thing at all.
#8 Those three little words. You know which three I mean – if not, then you’re reading the wrong article! Okay, post-honeymoon period, these words might get said less, but this isn’t necessarily anything to worry about. It could just mean that you are both secure in what you have together. If this is the case, then congratulations are far more in order than the opposite. [Read: 10 reasons saying “I love you” too soon sucks]
#9 Taking it easy. Quite simply, all those months of being constantly on edge and being over-aware of how you should be presenting yourself are a thing of the past. You might worry that the absence of a constant need to make the best impression signals the end of a glorious period, but isn’t it better to relax in a comfort zone with someone who knows and loves you than pretend to be something you’re not?
#10 Singular pleasures. The key to a happy and fulfilling relationship is to not only nurture it, but also to nurture yourself. With the honeymoon period out of the way, along with that desperate need to exist only for your significant other, you can start tending to yourself again in order to ensure that you can contribute to the relationship as a healthy and strong individual.
The end of the honeymoon stage, as you can see from the list above, only signals the beginning of a new phase in the relationship – not its end. Enjoy the progression and give yourself a pat on the back for successfully getting through to the next stages of the relationship game.
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Currently reclining with a peaceful and contented smile upon his face, with perhaps just a hint of mystery and steely resolve, Philip Hegarty has an obviously i...