The Five Stages of Relationship

Portrait of multiethnic couple embracing and looking at camera sitting on sofa. Smiling african american woman hugging mid adult man sitting on couch from behind at home. Happy mature mixed race couple laughing at home. [Istock photo/ Getty Images] Credit: Ridofranz

There are different stages every relationship goes through in an eternal cycle. Relationship expert Bruce Muzik, outlined 5 stages of relationship as identified by “Dr. Susan Campbell during a study of hundreds of couples”.

The five stages of relationship include:

  1. The Romance Stage: Some relationship experts have referred to this as the honeymoon stage or the Merge Stage. This is the first stage of the relationship. The couples feel like they have found the perfect match. They are often eager to spend time together, that the rational part of their brain is drowned out. People tend to ignore the red flags, incompatibilities and instead embrace the feeling of infatuation.
  2. The Power Struggle Stage: This is where the rude awakening occurs. You finally start to notice the difference between you both. You realize your “perfect” partner is not so perfect after all and they have started annoying you. Feelings of annoyance and hostility begins to mix with that of love. Depending on the circumstance or individuals involved, this is where some couples may breakup. The power struggle begins and you expect your partner to be like you or at least do things your own way.
  3. The Stability Stage: This is stage every couple who are able to go past the power struggle experience. This is a stage of peace that follows, once couples have been able to go past their differences. “A period of relative peace”, says Muzik. It is the more matured stage where you are willing to accept that your partner is different from you. Muzik refers to it as a stage to learn mutual respect and where love begins to blossom again.
  4. The Commitment Stage: Here, you have accepted the differences between you and your partner. You have made a deliberate decision to stay committed to each other. Although, this stage does not necessarily mean you are married.
  5. The Bliss/co-creation Stage: Now, you have both learnt a great deal about how love works. This comes as a result of you going through the previous stages together.


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Written by Monsurat

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