When you first start dating someone, everything is wonderful. The sex is amazing. Their jokes are hilarious. You two just get along so well, you can’t even imagine having a fight, or dealing with tough things that can make or break a relationship. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but even in the most epic of relationships, this honeymoon stage starts to fade away. It doesn’t mean that relationships become worse. In fact, often times it's quite the opposite — you grow into a deeper love and a deeper connection. But with this passing of time also comes new revelations. You both will have disagreements, thing they do will get on your nerves, and eventually some of their jokes will not be as funny.
There will be moments that can define your relationship, and they will either bring you two closer together or pull you apart. It will be throughout these times where you will think to yourself, “I can’t wait to be with this person for the rest of my life,” or “Looks like I’m going to have to download Tinder again.” As time passes, you learn more about the person you are with — and in turn, you learn more about yourself and what you want in a relationship. Being a relationship expert and having previous experience conducting couples therapy, I’ve witnessed couples go through these moments together. Some of them make it and some of them, well... don’t.
Good sex can make a relationship, and bad sex can break a relationship. Sometimes it's not quite that simple, but you get the idea. The first time you have sex with someone will give you a really good indication if you want to be with that person for just one night or many nights to come. No pun intended. If you’re relationship is amazing, but the sex is extremely lackluster, then you might have run into a case of no sexual chemistry. However, if the sex is mind-blowing, then pat yourself on the back and keep on keeping on.
2. Going To IKEA Together
Going to IKEA together can either be a beautiful wonderland or a horrifying nightmare. First off, you will see if you both have the same design ideas. Second, you can judge your significant other if he or she doesn’t get the meatballs. And third, if you can pick out the same furniture, carry it, and then build it together, you’ve got yourself a solid relationship.
3. Having “The Talk”
Personally, I think “the talk” gets such a bad rap. What’s wrong with open communication about where you two stand? What’s bad about expressing what you want out of a relationship and what you need? Somewhere along the way, we have been telling others that you are “desperate” or you seem “needy” if you want to have “the talk” with the person you are dating. Well, I’ve got news for you — you aren’t any of those things. What you are is a smart person. If knowing where you stand is going to break you two up, it's probably for the best.
4. Big Events
There will be big momentous occasions in your life and it will reveal a lot about your current partner and your relationship together. For example, if your significant other doesn’t show up for your graduation, it looks like you might be graduating on to someone else. On the other hand, if your other half surprises you with flowers and champagne after you got a job promotion, you know you’ve got someone special.
5. Remembering The Little (But Also Really Big) Things
There are going to be little things that will be the icing on the cake in your relationship. Either that icing is delicious and you can’t wait to have seconds, or the icing has spoiled and you’re about to have a night of throwing up. Let’s say for instance you’ve had it up to here with your partner and now you ask them to pick you up from the airport, but they give you some lame excuse — you’re probably going to say goodbye to them. Or if you’ve been overly generous and loving to your significant other and the one time you ask them to have dinner with your parents, they can’t because they're having drinks with friends, like they do all the time. Maybe it’s time to find someone else who will.
6. Meeting The Family
First time meeting the folks is a big deal. It’s already nerve wracking enough, but it’s also a big sign if you’re going to want to stay with your partner or not. You can see a lot by attending a family function or dinner. You will see how the family members treat each other and if it’s a family you want to be part of. Maybe you’ll fall in love with them just like you did with your mate, or maybe it will be quite a different story.
7. Moving In Together
Oh the joys of living together. You will learn more than you want to about your lover after you two cohabitate. You will learn what they are like in the mornings, before coffee. You will learn when exactly they go number two, even if you really don’t want to. But even through the dirty moments, you’ll either love living with your best friend and get excited for all the fun times together, or you’ll be running for the door… or the next single-person apartment.
8. Traveling Together
You think you know someone... until you travel with them. You think you know someone until you fly on a plane for 12 hours with a five-hour layover, get lost in a new city, and arrive at your 1-star hotel with a twin bed you both have to share. Then tell me if you still want to grow old with that person.
It can be scary to face this make-or-break moments in a relationship, but just remember that either way, whatever happens is going to propel you forward. If they end the relationship, then it wasn't worth wasting your time with anyway, and you can move on. If all goes well, then it just may be the real deal and you can feel even more secure in your relationship.
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