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Love After Marriage

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Katria Foger
Love is a beautiful moment of the life. True love is very hard to find and one should consider her/himself lucky if they have one around them. There are different kinds of love in the world, but all have one thing in common, it involves a loved one enveloped by your warmth and care. It is same in marriage. There are three stages of love in married life.

Love grows and changes. The emotional and romantic love that brings couples together in the first place is very different from the love after fifteen years of married life. Love relationships go through three stages. All are important if love is to flourish.

Stage 1 - Romantic Love: Love relationships usually begin with a strong physical and emotional attraction that produces an altered state of consciousness. Your brain is saturated with chemicals called endorphins, creating sensations of intense pleasure that accompany infatuation. In this state, you are apt to project images, expectations and ideals of the perfect mate onto your partner, which often have little to do with who your partner really is, but its hard to tell because both of you are on your best behavior. Reeling with romance and passion, you and your spouse are highly responsive to each other.

Stage 2 - Power Struggles: As infatuation and romantic love subside, healthy relationships go through a period of constant power struggles when each partner tries to mould the other into the ideal mate. During this process of molding the other spouse, many couples argue and fight and many others start avoiding sensitive areas of conflict. If either of the partners avoids the confrontation, their lives are likely to become more and more separate and devoid of intimacy and sharing. Although you avoid open conflict, agreeing at some level not to argue and fight, the tension and pain remain. Both of you long for that period of infatuation when being together was exciting. But this is nothing new for you, it is normal and is in every marriage. These kinds of situations and how you confront them builds understanding. Learning to confront at this stage helps your relationship mature. You both have to discover what can be changed in the relationship and what must be accepted.

Stage 3 - Unconditional Acceptance: In this stage, a healthy relationship moves beyond control issues to unconditional love and acceptance. However, during the transition from stage two to stage three, partners must still resolve issues in the relationship, taking risks to make positive change wherever possible and accepting those conditions that cannot be changed. Even in stage three, it is healthy to discuss anything that upsets you. Differences are approached positively, not as things to sweep under the carpet. At this stage, each person becomes highly aware of various traits in the other. Some you like and others you dislike, but you learn to accept the ones that cannot be changed. This is a time when expectations are readjusted and both of you become more realistic.

Each couple goes through these stages of love life and only those who put efforts in growing this love are successful.

Katria Foger

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