Can Honeymoon Phase Last Forever?
Yes! For some couples, it can last forever. For some, it never even happens. For some, it goes and never comes back, and the relationship is lost too! (obviously!). See the honeymoon phase is an I-can’t-keep-my-hands-off-you and I-can’t-keep-my-mind-off-you initial stage of the relationship. Everything feels good, everything feels better, and the world could flip upside down and you wouldn’t care if you’re holding their hand.
It’s a feeling like no other and there’s a science behind all that’s happening to you.
During the early stages of the relationship, scientists found activity in the area associated with dopamine activity in the brain, a neurotransmitter that allows you to feel pleasure, satisfaction, and motivation. In functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) conducted on romantic partners experiencing passionate love, several studies have associated activity in the regions of the brain associated with feelings of pleasure, like the caudate nucleus (involved in reward-processing and motivation) and ventral tegmental area (responsible for producing and releasing dopamine).
Furthermore, researchers have also found passionate love increases levels of norepinephrine in the body, an elevated level of which is known to boost emotions related to euphoria (very-happy!) feelings. When norepinephrine is released though, adrenaline is also released in the body which causes “butterflies in the stomach”. Unfortunately, adrenaline is also associated with lack of sleep, loss of appetite, and rapid heartbeat – other common symptoms when you start falling for someone.
These heightened hormones go away for a while, and that’s when the honeymoon starts waning away too. Again, for some. There are couples who can scream yes to the question “can the honeymoon phase last forever?” Because for them, it has! How? You must be wondering – when the hormones also wane away. Well, the thing is for these select few couples, these rushed hormones are just replaced by others that help them feel a sense of stability and contentment in the relationship. And they’d tell you, this deeper connection was better than the honeymoon phase’s excitement! These individuals just did the work of the relationship in the honeymoon phase itself or were just incredibly lucky to find someone they were quite compatible with so the work is easier.
For How Long Does The Honeymoon Phase Last?
The studies which conducted the fMRI on couples at the beginning of the relationship continued them for a while and found the hormones decrease anywhere between 12 months to 30 months of the relationship. So the honeymoon phase lasts for about a year to about 2.5 years. The gradual decrease starts happening anywhere around 6 months to 12 months. So, “can honeymoon phase last forever” – according to science, no. But many are able to feel a much deeper bond in their relationship once they put the work into their partnership, smartly manage any conflicts, and build something that’s worth fighting for – no matter what! This can help them keep the honeymoon stage last forever!
How To Make The Honeymoon Phase Last?
Fortunately, there are plenty of steps lovebirds can take to become positive to the question “Can the honeymoon phase last forever?” Here are 7 things to help keep the honeymoon phase going:
#1 Get Some Space
After those endless amounts of conversations and time with each other, it’s important to give each other space. It might seem contradictory to help your honeymoon stage last longer, but it will help more than you think. Every healthy relationship involves taking some time apart so you not only stay committed to each other, but also to your own personhood and development. This can help the partners maintain their own personal individuality and interests, which can actually help strengthen the relationship in the long run.
Spending some time apart from your partner can also make you miss them and long for their warm embrace. This can help you remember all the good they make you feel and why you love them so much. However, it’s important to approach time apart in a healthy and balanced way by scheduling the me-time wisely, and communicating openly with your partner throughout the process so you’re able to strengthen the relationship by taking space.
#2 Make Communication A Priority
“Can honeymoon phase last forever?” – yes, if you make communication a priority! Healthy communication is an important part of any relationship, and there are many ways you can take to manage conflict and strengthen your communication. This includes practicing active listening and sharing your thoughts & feelings by using “I” statements so you don’t blame or criticize your partner. It’s also important to be empathetic and understanding during conversations, and if things escalate, take some time apart to gain a fresh perspective.
Further, it’s important to set aside time to have meaningful conversations with your partner, where you can discuss important topics and share your thoughts and feelings in a safe and supportive environment. Overall, making communication a #1 priority not only promotes a deeper understanding, but also helps partners navigate potential conflicts or misunderstandings, and can help build a sense of trust and respect.
#3 Try Some New Things Together
For couples who are wondering – “Can honeymoon phase last forever?”. It can if you keep making the same effort as you make in the early stages of your relationship, like trying new things together. A study done by psychologists at Stony Brook University found couples who spent more time together were more satisfied in their relationship. The study included 53 married couples divided into three groups: one group tried an exciting new activity like hiking or dancing for 90 minutes a week, another group did a normal, routine activity together like going to a movie, and the third one changed nothing. After 10 weeks, the couple who did more exciting things together reported considerably more satisfaction in the relationship than the other groups.
Some new things to try with your partner can be a dance class like salsa or bachata, hiking in nature, going bowling together, exploring a nearby place, planning and carrying out a scavenger hunt, etc. The key is to find activities that both partners are interested in and willing to try and to approach them with a sense of openness and curiosity. This can help both of you enjoy the relationship and feel more connected to each other.
#4 Continue To Date Each Other!
In the beginning, couples often put quite an effort into each other. They plan dates, surprises, and exciting new activities so they keep exploring each other’s mutual interests. However, as time goes on, it can be easy to slip into a routine and stop prioritizing date nights. To maintain the honeymoon phase, it’s important to continue to date each other and make time for shared experiences. This could involve planning regular date nights or weekend getaways, trying new activities together, or exploring new places.
By continuing to date each other, couples can keep the relationship feeling exciting and new, and can strengthen their emotional connection. It also allows couples to continue to learn more about each other and explore new aspects of their relationship. In addition to planning date nights, it’s important to approach each other with a sense of curiosity and openness and to take an active interest in each other’s lives. This involves asking questions, actively listening, and showing interest in your partner’s hobbies, passions, and goals.
#5 Practice Appreciation & Partner-Focused Gratitude Practice
During the honeymoon phase, all your partner’s habits and quirks seem adorable. But as the honeymoon phase wanes away, those very quirks make you feel annoyed and you are focusing more on their negative parts than positive ones. It’s important to remind yourself at this point that no one’s perfect – not your partner and not you! So, try to focus on the good in them and the ways in which they make your life better. It’s not just important to focus, but it’s also important you show them the gratitude and appreciation you feel for them!
Expressing appreciation can take many forms, such as thanking your partner for something they did, complimenting their appearance or personality, or simply telling them how much you love and appreciate them. It’s important to be genuine and specific in your expressions of appreciation so that your partner feels seen and understood. In fact, studies have also concluded that couples who show gratitude towards their partner and express it are happier and feel more fulfilled in their relationship. So if you want the answer to the “can honeymoon phase last forever?” to be yes for you and your partner, practice appreciation and partner-focused gratitude!
#6 Make Physical Intimacy A Priority
Research after research has proven that touch is an important part of any relationship, and couples who touch each other more – hand-holding, gentle caresses, hugging, etc. – tend to be more happier and satisfied in their relationship. Certainly, sex is important too as this most intimate form of physical connection is linked to reduced feelings of stress (sex releases oxytocin and decreases cortisol), builds trust, and addresses many issues as it makes the mood lighter so you can have a healthy discussion.
To prioritize physical intimacy in your relationship, it’s important to make time for it in your busy schedule. This could involve scheduling regular date nights, setting aside time each day for physical touch and cuddling, or exploring new ways to enhance your physical connection. It’s also important to communicate openly with your partner about your needs and desires when it comes to physical intimacy. This can help ensure that you’re both on the same page and feel comfortable and safe in the relationship.
#7 Be Attentive To Your Partner’s Needs
Anyone can tell you a hundred relationship tips, but there’s just one person who’d know what is best for your relationship at that point – your partner. Just simple questions like how was their day, what they think about a particular situation, etc. can help you learn so much about them. Direct questions like what they want from the relationship?., what’s one thing they’d love to do more with you?, etc. can make them feel you’re attentive to their needs and in turn, create a more fulfilling relationship.
Both partners are quite attentive to each other during the honeymoon stage, but as the relationship starts to progress, they can become complacent. By keeping the same interest in each other alive, your relationship can also become affirmative to the question, “can honeymoon phase last forever?” Ultimately, being attentive to your partner’s needs is a way of showing that you value and respect them. This can help strengthen the emotional connection between you and your partner and keep the honeymoon phase alive over the long term.
What Happens When The Honeymoon Phase Ends?
The answer to the question “can honeymoon phase last forever?” is often no for many couples. The honeymoon phase of a relationship is characterized by intense feelings of passion, excitement, and infatuation. During this phase, partners may feel like they are the only two people in the world, and may have a heightened sense of physical attraction and emotional connection. However, the honeymoon phase is not a permanent state, and inevitably, the intense feelings of passion and excitement will begin to fade. When the honeymoon phase ends, couples may experience a shift in their relationship. The intense emotions that were present at the beginning of the relationship may start to wane, and partners may begin to see each other more realistically, including each other’s flaws and imperfections.
Some common changes that can occur when the honeymoon phase ends include a more stable and predictable relationship with less intense emotional highs and lows, a shift towards focusing on practical concerns such as household tasks and finances, a change in communication from primarily expressing affection to discussing more practical matters, and an increase in conflicts and disagreements as partners learn more about each other’s personalities and habits.
While the end of the honeymoon phase can be a challenging time for some couples, it’s important to remember that it is a normal and natural part of the relationship cycle. Couples can work together to navigate this shift by focusing on maintaining open communication, continuing to make time for each other, and actively working to strengthen the relationship over time. By doing so, couples can successfully move beyond the honeymoon phase and build a strong, lasting relationship that can stand the test of time.
6 Signs Your Honeymoon Phase Is Over
#1 The Intensity Of Your Emotions Decreases
During the honeymoon phase, partners may experience a surge of intense emotions, such as infatuation, excitement, and passion. They may feel an almost constant sense of elation and joy when they are together, and they may spend hours talking, laughing, and exploring new experiences together. However, as the honeymoon phase ends, these intense feelings may start to fade, and partners may begin to feel more comfortable and secure with each other.
While this can be a positive sign that the relationship is maturing and deepening, it can also lead to a sense of disappointment or sadness as the initial rush of excitement begins to wear off. It’s important for partners to recognize that these changes are normal and to focus on building a strong, healthy relationship based on trust, respect, and mutual support. By communicating openly and honestly with each other and working together to address any issues or concerns, partners can move beyond the honeymoon phase and build a lasting, fulfilling relationship.
#2 You Start Noticing Their Flaws
One of the signs the honeymoon stage is over is when you start noticing flaws in the other person – which you just didn’t think much about before or just choose to ignore. When a considerable amount of time passes in a relationship, you start to notice what’s a one-time thing and what’s a habit or a personality trait. It might seem like a task to get used to these traits or choose which ones you can let go of and which ones you want to change! Know that changing habits isn’t an easy thing, and you will have to be empathetic when pointing them out in the conversation.
This sure can be a challenging time in a relationship, as it can be difficult to reconcile the idealized version of the partner with the more realistic view. It’s important to keep in mind that nobody is perfect and that everyone has flaws and makes mistakes. In a healthy relationship, partners will learn to accept and support each other, flaws and all. If partners are willing to communicate openly and honestly with each other, they can work together to navigate these new challenges and build a stronger relationship over time.
#3 You’ve Become More Comfortable With Each Other
During the honeymoon phase, partners may go out of their way to impress each other and present the best version of themselves. They may spend more time and effort getting ready for dates or outings and may be more conscious of their behavior and communication. However, as the honeymoon phase ends, partners may become more comfortable with each other and start to let their guard down. They may feel more relaxed and less pressured to impress each other, which can lead to a shift in behavior and communication.
This can also lead to complacency in the relationship and can make the other person feel that he/ she is being taken for granted. While getting more comfortable around each other isn’t a bad thing, it’s always nice to make some effort into looking good for the other person and make efforts to impress them by planning dates and surprises. Taking an effort into showing appreciation through meaningful words and gestures can also help you say yes when someone asks you the question “can honeymoon phase last forever?”
#4 There Are More Arguments
In the honeymoon phase, couples are all about taking care of each other, hyping the other one, and making it a priority to make them feel all happy! They also tend to agree a lot more as they don’t want to come off as an unpleasant person. But as the relationship progresses and the honeymoon phase in the relationship seems to fade away, the arguments become more and more common. You no longer feel like you need to hold your differing opinion and you start to feel a lesser need to compromise than before. It doesn’t mean the first time you fight is the sign your honeymoon phase is over, but when you’re having more arguments than lovey-dovey conversations, that’s the sign!
Sometimes partners can react out of their auto-pilot mode without thinking too much. Once the strong positive emotions of the relationship fade, it brings their inner emotional self out. Now, they react out of past hurt, emotional patterns, and previous experiences. That’s why one of the best things you can do after you think the honeymoon stage is over is to get some personal space and work on yourself, so when you come back from those brief stages of me-time, you’re better able to resolve conflict in the relationship!
#5 You Miss The Past & Are Less Excited About The Future
As the honeymoon phase wanes, the partners start fantasizing about the intensely pleasurable feelings they experienced during the phase and spend more of their headspace in the past than they do in the future. They also become so caught up in the happy memories of the honeymoon stage that they feel less & less excited about the present, and as a result, the future. You also start seeing your partner in a different limelight, and this alternative fantasy just seems more appealing. These feelings of longing for the honeymoon stage are more common among couples who had an intense physical and emotional attraction at the start!
As natural as this is to experience these feelings, it’s important that accept them and understand it’s a normal sign of the honeymoon phase being over in your relationship. But you still have so much to look forward to! The stability, the strong commitment, the experience of enjoying different phases of life together, etc. will be more joyful and peaceful than in this early stage. And trust us, you will feel these intense feelings again. If you don’t believe us, read this thread on Reddit on “Can honeymoon last forever?” many real couples who have stayed for a long time with each other will tell you that these pleasurable emotions will last over time with lots of communication, respect, and love for each other!
#6 You Start Spending Time Apart!
Couples who’d say yes to the question “can honeymoon phase last forever?” will often tell you that they always took some space from the relationship and it wasn’t just the relationship time 24X7. So, spending time apart from your SO isn’t a bad thing. In fact, it can help you build a strong relationship in the long run. Taking some space helps you build your individual personality, and interests, and can also make you long for your partner and feel gratitude towards them!
When you decide to take some time apart from each other, it’s important to communicate openly. Time apart doesn’t always mean being on a break. It just means you go on a weekend trip with your girlfriends rather than your partner. It can also mean you spend some time in solitude for an evening where you don’t interact with your partner or anyone else! It can also be trying a new interest or hobby with no involvement from your SO. Engaging in activities independent of your relationship can make the partners maintain their own sense of self and can also bring a set of diverse experiences into the relationship.
What Stage Comes After The Honeymoon Stage?
After the first stage, the couples experience the “becoming a couple” stage. During this phase, the seemingly annoying qualities that felt perfect during the honeymoon phase become annoying. Arguments are also frequent and don’t resolve as soon as they used to! It doesn’t mean you fall out of love or the bond that you felt was not true, it just means the reality of relationships is coming to the surface and you need to put in some work to make your values and life choices align.
Here are the five stages of a relationship:
Stage 1: Honeymoon Phase/ The Romance Stage
The first stage of any relationship is pretty straightforward. It is all about romance, passion, and those fluttery butterflies in your stomach that just make everything and anything about your relationship and your partner just perfect! Even the flaws are cute and their weird habits are adorable. In this stage, you will feel like your partner is just the definition of “perfection” and you have found what’s the ideal partner or your “soulmate”. The excitement of this phase is such that you might not be able to accomplish anything because you’re consumed by the thoughts of your partner and your booming partnership.
That’s not your fault. It’s the hormones.
During the start of a new relationship, your brain produces happy hormones (dopamine and oxytocin) and another one called norepinephrine making you giddy, energetic, and euphoric, which can trigger insomnia and reduced appetite. Love really is a drug after all! During this stage, the couples will also feel a lot of physical and emotional attraction, which can lead to them spending a lot of time together.
This phase can cause individuals to sometimes ignore “red flags”, incompatibilities, and value clashes. Having said that, it’s important to enjoy this phase of the relationship and at the same time, also acknowledge your heightened emotions and actively engage in conversations on topics that matter to you! It’s possible for relationships to circle back to this stage after they have spent a long-time together. This can happen after a huge fight, after they have taken some time apart, or when they transition to a major change in their relationship or life – like having kids or moving to their dream house.
Stage 2: Becoming A Couple/ Power Struggle
The “Becoming A Couple” stage is also known as the “Power Struggle” stage, and can be non-existent for couples for whom the answer to the question “can honeymoon phase last forever?” is yes! But for the majority, this stage is the reality that thumps on the back soon after the honeymoon phase seems to wave off. This is when the differences and annoying habits become a problem and can lead to arguments, friction, and fights. Power struggles increase, and so individuals might struggle to find a balance between their individual needs and the needs of the relationship.
As the problems increase (which doesn’t mean the love is fading too!), our biological responses to stress increases too! Depending on our personality and individual situations, some people might and others withdraw. Nonetheless, this is an important part of any relationship. As we let our guards down, the understanding increases and there’s more knowledge and acceptance of each other’s perceptions, opinions, and ideas.
To move through this stage, couples may need to work on communication, compromise, and empathy. They may need to learn how to express their feelings and needs in a constructive way, and how to listen to and understand their partner’s perspective. With effort and commitment, couples can navigate through the Power Struggle Stage and move on to the next stage – “Disillusionment”.
Stage 3: Disillusionment
During this stage, the illusions about each other have all become clear – thanks to the eye-opening conversations of the Power Struggle stage. This is where the individuals decide whether they’d want to continue the relationship or let go. Some even become carefree and start to take each other for granted, while certain others can start a fight just from the looks of each other. Honestly, this is the most difficult part of any relationship and requires a lot of difficult conversations, and respect for each other (in terms of opinions, values, and passions), but most importantly, self-love so you can reach the next stage of your relationship – whole-hearted love!
A crucial part of the disillusionment stage is to realize that your partner can’t make you happy or can help you resolve all your emotions. Taking responsibility for your emotions can become hard, especially when you feel that the other person has caused them – but it’s necessary. Prioritizing self-love and self-care is important so you can feel whole on your own and not dependent completely on the other person for your happiness. Although, this work has to come from both sides to help your relationship level up.
Remember, the goal is not to stay in the honeymoon stage forever but rather to build a mutually beneficial, wholesome, and stable relationship. Although, it can become tough because this is also the time when many couples are transitioning to another stage of their life like getting married or having children. There’s no rush though! If you love each other and have aligned values, you can smoothly progress from this stage to the next one.
Stage 4: Creating Wholehearted Love
The fourth stage of the relationship is all about feeling stability with each other and a sense of confidence that brings forth peace in your life and a genuine feeling of pleasure in each other. You will also feel tons of gratitude that you were able to weather the personal conflicts and still have a person who you love and care for so much standing next to you! It will give you a belief that you can survive any future conflicts – because in a relationship, it’s often the personal struggles that cause separation and not the external issues.
Your love has now moved past just the superficial passionate stage and is now characterized by a partnership rooted in acceptance, compassion, and a deep commitment towards each other. You have settled into a comfortable routine and balanced your life between relationships and other aspects of life like friends, careers, etc.
While this is a stable stage, some individuals also start feeling stagnant right about now and feel like they are caught in a rut. Some partners also start taking the other one for granted. In order to keep the relationship alive, you need to put in continuous efforts so you can feel connected to each other. Trying new things, scheduling regular date nights, and showing them you still care with small gestures like cooking or leaving a rose in their car can help the relationship to continue to progress and level up to the final stage of love – “finding your calling as a couple”.
Stage 5: Finding Your Calling As A Couple
We’re all here to find our purpose in life so we can lead a happier, more fulfilling journey. This stage of a relationship is lesser about each other and more about finding your calling and helping the other person become a better version of themselves so they can lead their lives replete with satisfaction, purpose, and a grounded sense of peace. It’s also about making the active choice of becoming more whole as a person so you can do something bigger than yourself.
Your relationship does require maintenance at this stage though and you should be able to spend time together, try new things, and just enjoy each other’s presence in life. Find new ways to connect with each other – like through a new hobby or interesting conversation topics, or you can also seek professional marriage counseling – that helps. This stage is all about moving towards a shared future together whilst also maintaining and building your individual personalities.
Know that new challenges will come and go, but this deep sense of individuality and a stable relationship will help you overcome them all. Don’t wait for them though or worry about how will you deal with them! Instead, relish the journey with your other half as you see them become a truer version of themselves and you, yourself, are on a journey that makes you feel better and happier each passing day!
What Is The Three-Month Rule?
The three-month rule is simple and a very common dating guideline. It just requires you to wait for at least three months before you become emotionally invested in a new relationship or start getting excited about long-term possibilities with a new person. It is sometimes also referred to as the “90-day rule” or the “quarter rule”. It’s closely related to the honeymoon phase as during the first few weeks of meeting someone, you aren’t able to see any flaws in them – thanks to the excitement and sudden bliss of attraction. Waiting for three months gives both partners time to get to know each other and avoid rushing into any commitment. By waiting a few months, couples can take some time to evaluate their compatibility, work through any challenges or conflicts, and determine whether a long-term relationship is worth the effort.
It’s not a hard and fast rule though, and different couples can choose a different timeline for their relationship. Some people are affirmative to the question, “can honeymoon phase last forever?”, while others aren’t. Giving some time helps them build a strong connection and understand each other’s individual needs, preferences, and circumstances. While the three-month rule can be a helpful guideline for some people, it is important to listen to your own instincts and feelings and make the decision that feels right for you.
In conclusion to the common question, “can honeymoon phase last forever?”, for some couples it does last forever, but those are also sometimes the couples who don’t experience the honeymoon phase at all! Others who experience the honeymoon phase forever are those who have difficult conversations about values and life choices during the giddy phase and hence don’t have to experience the passion going away due to the reality of the arguments sinking in!
When you read personal experiences about “can honeymoon phase last forever?” on Reddit, you will see many couples were able to keep this infatuated phase of their relationship alive forever with love, respect, communication, and making major decisions together. Others experienced it in the start and were glad it was over so they could enjoy the comfort and stability with their partner rather than only rushed-up hormones bringing those blissful vibes of the relationship alive.
By making time for each other, trying new things together, and continuing to express love and affection, couples can cultivate a lasting and fulfilling relationship that continues to bring joy and happiness. While the intensity of the early days may fade, the depth of emotional connection and love can continue to grow over time.