At the beginning of dating, everything is new. Your significant other is shiny and mysterious and you're just dying to know more. We have been there and done that, honey.
That euphoric feeling at the beginning of a relationship is called the "honeymoon phase."
We've all heard of it. It's the butterflies and wide smiles when they walk into a room. Everyone else seems to fade out and all you see is them. Standing there, perfect.
But what happens when that person no longer gives you butterflies? What happens when you start to notice the way they never seem to put their plate in the sink? Or how they never put the cap back on the toothpaste?
Gradually, you start to see flaws and wrongdoings, and some people just can't cope with that.
The beginning of the relationship starts out with passion and butterflies. But when that dies out, what's left? After the dust settles and it's not a new relationship anymore, what does that look like?
Soon you know all of their stories so well that you can tell them yourself. You've met their family, they've met yours. You've had fun times and times where it seems like they're asking for a punch in the face.
We tend to glorify the honeymoon phase and believe that once it's over, the relationship is as well.
I went to show a family friend my lock screen on my phone, which is a picture of me and my significant other. It's a picture of us kissing in a pumpkin patch right before Halloween. I joked that we kiss pretty often and the words she said next stuck with me. She said, "It's when you stop kissing that things become a problem."
Passion doesn't have to die. It can still exist even after a year together, or three years, or even 10.
Maintaining the honeymoon phase is about putting in work. It's about learning to see the beauty in all of their flaws. Keeping passion and love alive is loving them in spite of all of the things about them that are imperfect.
But sometimes, passion does die. Sometimes, there isn't a way to reignite that spark. Some relationships just aren't meant to last. But don't let the reason that your relationship ends be because you didn't put in work or try.
Make it a point to tell them every day that you appreciate them and the things that they do for you. Try to give them time to talk about their day and how they feel before you talk about your day. Kiss them, and kiss them often.