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How Long Does the 'Honeymoon Stage' of a Relationship Last?


ashley001

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I think the honeymoon stages of a relationship last for a few weeks to a few months.

 

Afterwards is the "make it or break it" point of a relationship for people start to really exhibit their true personality as the relationship moves into a more comfortable stage.

 

Those who are just out for the newness and thrills of meeting someone, usually jump ship at this time.

 

The honeymoon stage of a relationship is when everything is new and exhilarating and everything about your SO is dear to you, including their idiosyncracies and foibles. After the honeymoon stage, the idiosyncracies start to bother you and you and your SO actually have to work at seeing whether this relationship is for the long term.

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It's when you're in the very beginning stages of a relationship. You are blind to the other person's flaws and absolutely adore every moment with them. You can't get enough of each other. You are always happy and totally enamored with the other person. Unfortunately, it doesn't last very long (maybe 2-6 months, give or take). Reality sets in and the rose-colored glasses come off. What happens after the honeymoon stage depends upon whether the relationship is meant to go the distance or not. It depends on your compatibility once you see each other for who you really are, and whether or not both people can deal with their partner and the everyday humdrum stuff that goes along with a mature relationship. It will either (a) crash and burn or (b) move forward into something better.

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In my experience the honeymoon phase typically lasts a year to 18 months, and is when you tend to be more infatuated with one another and unable to see fault in each other. Around 2 years is when the relationship starts to settle into an honest, long term deep relationship where it takes more of an effort to keep things going, passion tends to slow a bit and you grow more comfortable with each other, develop a real companionship, you've been through some tough times together and know if you have what it takes as a team to make it stick.

 

Of course this isn't the same for everyone but it's what I've observed in my own relationships and in those around me.

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i have realized the honeymoon period lasts as long as you remain in a fantasy land and not in real life. its when situations arise where the two of you need to work things out , then you start finding the negatives in your partner. its the bad times which make you realize more about your partner and their ability to work at things and how they are in in them.

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According to study, "love" is really a chemical reaction in a person's brain. This chemical reaction is very much like a drug to the human body. It makes us relaxed and makes us feel good. However, after a certain period, we become immune to the reaction, and have to find a "new person" in order to have a new reaction.

 

On average, the length before a person becomes immune is 18 months, according to some study (the following link gives more information, but it's not where I learned the study from.):

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link removed

 

 

... on an unrelated note, the reason behind why humans kiss, is because that kiss is how we determine genetic compatibility. In the instance saliva's exchanged, we're supposed to be able to naturally analyze if the person is a possible candidate with whom to produce the next generation:

link removed

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According to study, "love" is really a chemical reaction in a person's brain. This chemical reaction is very much like a drug to the human body. It makes us relaxed and makes us feel good. However, after a certain period, we become immune to the reaction, and have to find a "new person" in order to have a new reaction.

 

On average, the length before a person becomes immune is 18 months, according to some study (the following link gives more information, but it's not where I learned the study from.):

link removed

link removed

 

 

... on an unrelated note, the reason behind why humans kiss, is because that kiss is how we determine genetic compatibility. In the instance saliva's exchanged, we're supposed to be able to naturally analyze if the person is a possible candidate with whom to produce the next generation:

link removed

 

I recently read a similar article in National Geographic called 'Love: The Chemical Reaction'... and it essentially said the brain produces dopamine (the feel good hormone) during the initial phases of a relationship, known as the honeymoon phase, and this is not sufficient to sustain a long term relationship. In short "dopamine creates intense energy, exhilaration, focused attention, and motivation to win rewards." (National Geographic, 2/06 pp. 34) MRI's have shown that a specific part of the brain is activated when the honeymoon phase occurs- the ventral tegmental area and the caudate nucleus. (NG pp 35).

 

The brains of couples in longer term relationships showed different sections of the brain activated and different neurotransmitters. Oxytocin was the neurotransmitter activated following the decrease of dopamine, and actually fostered the long term attachment that couples who stay in monogamous relationships together have. It is also true that making love with your long term partner stimulates the production of more oxytocin, furthering the connection and bond between long term partners.

 

Studies have shown that couples who fail after the honeymoon phase ends have not been able to produce enough oxytocin in response to one another, and thus lack those feelings of bonding that lead to long term relationships. (NG, 2/06 pp. 48)

 

Interesting stuff.

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18 months!? Sheeesh...none of my relationships have EVER made it that far

 

I think length of the honeymoon stage totally depends on the couple. For my relationships it was nowhere near eighteen months.

 

This is of course dependent on your compatibility as a couple- you won't be releasing all that dopamine if you just aren't "feeling it" with that other person.

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I definitely agree, 18 mos-2 years. I know a lot of people think it's shorter but it really is true that the tough times don't usually set in until 2 years. My friends and I all agree that the two year mark is almost always make or break...

 

My two year mark sucked!!

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I do agree 18-24 months is about the average; though this can be shortened or extended depending on the couple and the circumstances. For example, being in an LDR where you spend less time together may extend the stage as it is more "exciting" for longer (due to more newness).

 

After the honeymoon, there are periods of 'power struggle' as you adjust to the realities, and how you get through those affects whether there are later stages or not.

 

The irony is that often people get married in this honeymoon stage...when maybe they really aren't seeing their partner in true light (and vice versa), and while couples can often adjust through the post-honeymoon stages together, sometimes the reality is far less pleasant and they just are unable to get through it (sometimes with good reason...like finding out some very damaging habits of other).

 

This is a good article on the 'stages' of love during honeymoon, and after that: link removed

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This is of course dependent on your compatibility as a couple- you won't be releasing all that dopamine if you just aren't "feeling it" with that other person.

 

That's very true. I think in most of my relationships it was more of a lustful thing, physical attraction and not much more, which clearly has a pretty quick expiration date. Plus I am young and the guys I date tend to be even younger...not exactly a recipe for success!

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I really have no idea. I'm not sure if we're still in the honeymoon stage, or if this kind of happiness is permanent. It's been almost 2 years, and I know that while for the first year we were definitely in the honeymoon stage, I can't pinpoint when or if it ended. This really confuses me, but it's not a bad thing or anything.

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I'm sorry to say, but this is really depressing. Not that people wouldn't WANT to continue feeling that lovey-dovey feeling the honeymoon stage sets, but THAT they don't. I guess my silly little idealistic self thought it was possible to get that feeling to last forever. Boy am I going to get a sad dose of reality.

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I guess my silly little idealistic self thought it was possible to get that feeling to last forever. Boy am I going to get a sad dose of reality.

 

It's replaced by something better.

 

I believe that, over the years, people fall in and out of love with their spouses. And each time they fall back in love, it's a stronger kind of love.

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I'm sorry to say, but this is really depressing. Not that people wouldn't WANT to continue feeling that lovey-dovey feeling the honeymoon stage sets, but THAT they don't. I guess my silly little idealistic self thought it was possible to get that feeling to last forever. Boy am I going to get a sad dose of reality.

 

 

Yep I agree with Amberella. The strong, deep, committed love that you feel for a partner AFTER their flaws become apparent and AFTER you'd fought and struggled together and AFTER the exciting newness has worn off and with all you've been through knowing you can count on one another and trust one another and love one another.... is much better than the honeymoon infatuation.

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I'm sorry to say, but this is really depressing. Not that people wouldn't WANT to continue feeling that lovey-dovey feeling the honeymoon stage sets, but THAT they don't. I guess my silly little idealistic self thought it was possible to get that feeling to last forever. Boy am I going to get a sad dose of reality.

 

I don't think it is depressing at all. Who said you stop loving or don't keep working at it just because the initial hormonal drive is gone? I sure didn't.

 

For me, the real love that follows the honeymoon stage - where you accept and love one another for whom you really are, realize you really are separate individuals (not "just like each other") and build that trust and respect together is FAR better than the transient rather "shallow" honeymoon stage.

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  • 3 years later...

i wish i could agree with some of you on the 18 month and good job on getting that far but im having quite a rough time after being with my girlfriend for 4 months im taking an accurate guess when i say that our honeymoon period is over and it is testing the relationship alot because she's not acting the way she did not to long ago and its a major concern because she's depressed most of the time and she's pointed things out that have irritated her about me and stuff that she's never said before also iv found things that have annoyed me about her but iv shrugged them off my shoulder like a bug because i know its not worth bringing up or arguing about. any advice on how to deal with this situation ???

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i wish i could agree with some of you on the 18 month and good job on getting that far but im having quite a rough time after being with my girlfriend for 4 months im taking an accurate guess when i say that our honeymoon period is over and it is testing the relationship alot because she's not acting the way she did not to long ago and its a major concern because she's depressed most of the time and she's pointed things out that have irritated her about me and stuff that she's never said before also iv found things that have annoyed me about her but iv shrugged them off my shoulder like a bug because i know its not worth bringing up or arguing about. any advice on how to deal with this situation ???

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  • 4 weeks later...

Presuming a specific Relationship will fail. What factors come in to play regarding how long it will take before the “Honeymoon Phase” is over.

1. Time spent together, the longing factor plays a major role in extended the Honeymoon Phase.

2. The emotional stability of each person in the relationship.

3. Each person’s level of insecurity more insecure people tend to be more clingy and this is not very attractive.

4. Attraction Levels, low attraction levels from either party will shorten the lifespan of the relationship.

5. Each person’s level of social communication, too much communication especially via electronic media such as BBM will drastically shorten a relationship. The main factor comes in to play with the interference from outside parties as your emotions and feeling toward the other person is instantly communicated without giving you time to calm down or even rationalize. Factors of Social Proof.

6. Sex, too much too little and compatibility.

7. The courtship period, how long do you take before moving in, getting married? It found that a longer courtship period increases the survivability of a relationship

8. Outside interference also falls under social proof.

9. Each parties relationships with close relatives and friends. It’s found that relationships where people have poor relations with the other party’s parent’s /friends/ family tend to dissolve quickly as once again the factor of social proofing comes into play. When faced with the unknown you look at your peers.

10. Own time and time spent outside the relationship with friends, relative and family. If your social circle is diminishing while in a relationship then you know there are some serious problems. Couples often make the mistake of not taking personal space/time.

11. Hormone Levels normally give way between 18 and 36 months. If you have a good strong basis in your relationship. This will be enough to get you through this period. If blinding hormones are keeping you together, it’s over.

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  • 7 months later...

Depends really.

 

My last relationship lasted forever it seemed. Til towards the end I couldn't be with her anymore because of financial reasons (I also found it hard to deal with her constant temper, but I still loved her).

 

I think a good couple that is compatible can have the honeymoon stage all the time.

 

When I was an undergrad there was a grad student in my department who was late in his 30s, he was married to his wife and they were constantly, I mean CONSTANTLY just snuggling with each other in public.

 

I knew him for the whole 5 years I was in college.

 

I don't think there was one day that went by without them being affectionate to each other.

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