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Monday, February 14, 2011

Cycles of Love

In light of Valentine’s Day, I figured couples and singles could use some relationship advice. Many of us have either been in a serious relationship by this point in college or at least have a clue of what a serious relationship consists of. For those who haven’t, read closely, I think you will find my interpretation of relationship stages useful.
Have you ever been involved in a relationship that brings initial joy, but over time ends up causing a great deal of pain? Well if this has happened to you or is currently happening to you, don’t fret. I have some helpful advice for getting you through this tough time. We all know how complicated relationships can be. Maybe you have just begun dating your new girlfriend/boyfriend. I’m positive you still may find some of my information enlightening. I found from my past experiences that relationships have cycles. One must know the cycles of relationships in order to effectively make their own relationship work. In addition, one can also prevent their relationship from entering a certain cycle if it is unwanted.
The first stage is what I call stage 1, or more commonly known as the “getting to know one another “stage. During stage 1, you and your partner go on dates, ask questions about past relationships and spark conversations of interest to see what the two of you share in common. The first stage typically doesn’t last for more than three or four months (depending on the couple). The second stage in a relationship is known as stage 2. In stage two, you will notice your relationship has grown and feelings have accumulated over a short period of time. As the feelings increase, so do the insecurities. You and your partner want to secure each other’s feelings and you may become naturally territorial. You begin to set boundaries for your partner or vice versa. For instance, he/she may call to tell you they bought something new to go out with their friends for the evening. Naturally, you want to know where they are going, who they are going with, and possibly an estimate of when they will arrive home; whereas three months prior, you could’ve cared less.
Slowly but surely stage 3 develops. Stage 3 develops fairly quickly in comparison to stage two. Stage 3 is the steady increase of feelings and the introduction of the first “argument”. This argument is a big deal. In most cases, the argument between you and your partner is natural. It is especially natural if your argument is conducted as a debate. If it is a screaming match, you may want to take this as a sign for the relationship as a whole. Stage 4 develops after the “L-word” is exchanged. After you begin saying the “L-word” things are officially serious. You most likely know close to everything (important) about your partner.
Stage 4 is typically the last stage in the love cycle. After stage 4, you have made an unspoken commitment that your partner is who you want to be with for as long as possible. It is important to recognize that not ALL relationships lead to engagements and marriages. Instead of regretting the relationships that don’t get past stage 3, take each and every one as a learning experience. I hope this information was useful for you. Whether you are single or taken, be sure to enjoy your Valentine’s Day!

*All information is based purely off of opinion and is not to be used as a guide


Anonymous Sean M said...

Your observations about relationships make a lot of sense to me, even though I have never grouped them together so succinctly. I especially like when you mention people's desires to 'secure each other's feelings.' Relationships are about wanting the best for someone, even if it means sacrificing some of your own comfort. Good writing.

February 23, 2011 at 4:44 PM  

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