Life Is Just Peachy, Isn’t It? The 15 Stages Of Falling In Love

January 2, 2013  |  
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For some people, it happens in a week, for others, a year, but no matter the speed, everyone goes through the same stages when falling in love. So, don’t worry if you’re feeling spastic, scared or weak: this map of falling in love will make it very apparent that that’s normal.

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The spark

There is the rare case of two people that meet and see each other regularly for years before seeing one another as a sexual or romantic being. And then, one day, BAM! They realize they’re madly in love. But, as I said, that is rare. And most great loves begin with a spark the moment you first meet. That’s chemistry you’re feeling—it’s what happens when your body comes in contact with another body that’s right for you. And once you feel it, it’s addicting.

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The desire to see him every day

Since that chemistry is addicting, you start to desire to see that person every day. Any time you are not with them you are counting down until the time you get to see them next and you feel that something is missing. You struggle to enjoy your other activities because you’re just thinking of that person, or checking your phone for messages from them. You need to have them involved in your every moment.

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The feeling of being in-sync

Every time you grab your phone to call him, he’s already called you. You can get into novel-length text conversations in which you whine about the boring holiday party you’re at and he somehow knows everything you’re feeling, and has the perfect, witty remarks that make you feel understood, empathized with, and happier. You feel that you’re always on the same page.

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The compulsion to tell him everything

That feeling of being in-sync is so good that you want to test it to make sure it’s there all the time. You want to tell him every thing that happens to you. You need to hear how he responds to it. You know it will be the response you want to hear. And that reinforces your decision to keep seeing this person.

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The urge to introduce him to everyone

You want to show him off! Introducing him to the people who are already staples in your life makes it feel like he is becoming a staple in your life, too. You like that. And you want to make the people you love happy, by showing them you’ve found someone great.

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The envisioning of the future

You start daydreaming about the two of you traveling together, meeting one another’s families, moving in together, adopting a dog together. It feels good to think about making plans with this person. The idea of that sort of commitment sounds right.

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The bonding

Okay, you know you like each other now. You’ve spent enough time together to know you don’t drive each other (too) nuts and that there aren’t any deal-breakers. Now, you just spend time together. Things slow down. That feeling that your life isn’t complete without them has subsided. You can get back to normal now, but you’re still excited every time you see them. Now, you’re just seeing how you get along with time, euphoria aside. You’re seeing how you two do in regular, boring old life.

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The milestones

Having sex for the first time, traveling together, meeting the parents, saying I love you. After you’ve spent enough time together and realized you still feel strongly about each other, even without all the excitement of things being “new,” you make larger commitments, like having sex (if you haven’t already), going on trips together, meeting the parents and saying those big three words.

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The transition from novel to comfortable

It had to happen sometime. Someone put on their embarrassing pajamas, somebody got sick to their stomach in front of the other, somebody showed that they are a real person, just like everyone else. They are not some magical creature but just a human being with flaws, quirks, insecurities and biological functions. And for a second, it’s awkward.

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The appreciation of the comfortable

But the transition was only awkward for a second. Then, one morning, you roll over and look at that person and are grateful that you can wear your zit cream around them. It feels good to know you don’t have to put up any more fronts. This has become a completely safe zone. And it makes you love them even more.

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The questioning of the comfortable

But wait a minute: is it bad that that euphoria is gone? Does that mean you’re getting over this person? Is it perhaps supposed to feel crazy exciting all the time?? Is this comfort a bad thing??

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The “Do I really want to do this?”

“Maybe we moved too fast.” “Maybe it won’t work out in the long run because he is x,y, or z.” You start to become afraid of the prospect of being with someone for a long time, because the longer you’re with someone, the more you could get hurt. You think, “Maybe I’m not that crazy about this person. Maybe it’s all an illusion.” You’re doing this to protect yourself.

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The “What was I thinking?! Of course I want to do this!”

So, you have your little freak out. You take a little time away from your beloved  (whether you tell them you’re doing it on purpose or are just “busy” for a while). You want to see if you’ll actually miss them…you do. And nobody else you meet even comes close. And you realize that getting comfortable wasn’t a bad thing! It was a great thing! It meant you are close.

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The shift in priorities

You decide this person is worth making space in your life for. You decide they are a priority and that it’s your responsibility to sometimes say no to girl’s night, or to something you wanted to do for yourself, so that you can do something for the two of you.

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The “Okay, I’m in this now. And that’s okay.”

All of your fears have sprung up. They’ve all given you a good shake and made you re-think whether or not you want to make yourself so vulnerable as to commit to a long-term relationship. You’ve fought them all. Now you peacefully accept that you’re in this for the long haul, and that puts you at risk for also getting hurt. But it also means the loving, warm, supportive environment of a relationship if not forever, at least for now. So, it’s okay.

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  • hollyw

    Wow, the first 12 slides were really good…then the last 4 kind of drew out and sounded like one long thought process lol. But, better content for so many pages.

  • Na Na

    Such a good article Julia! I have voiced my displeasure for some of your work before, but fair is fair and I will equally voice my opinion when your work is great! This is a good article and so on point that I’m sitting here smiling thinking about my stage lol

  • Stanley Dada

    That was a good to read!

  • clove8canela

    Very nice article. It’s exciting just thinking about all these aspects.

  • Guest

    This is a great list! I like the fact that it addresses the awkward moments and the feelings of doubt that may arise.

    • L-Boogie

      True. Love is an interesting emotion. Just when you think you have things figured out it sends you a curve ball.

  • WC

    I’m currently at stage 13 wondering if there will be a 14-16, ha!!

    • L-Boogie

      LOL!