What’s often called the honeymoon phase of a relationship refers to the early days when two people are starry-eyed for each other. During this time, their feelings for each other are so strong that they might be blinded to each other’s flaws and might still be putting up a charade to make sure they win the approval of their beloved rather than being their true selves.
The honeymoon phase is often filled with nervous sweating, butterflies in the stomach, and strong feelings of euphoria—this is the time when people feel like they're on top of the world because they've finally found "the one."
But like it or not, the honeymoon phase doesn’t last forever. Once a couple reaches a certain point, those intense feelings will fade away. The relationship lasts if there is real caring, respect, and attachment underneath all those love-dovey feelings.
And if there’s not, both partners will know sooner or later that it wasn’t meant to be. Moving out of the honeymoon phase doesn’t have to mean the end of a relationship, though, or the end of romance. It’s just something new!
So how can people tell when that part of the relationship is over? Keep an eye out for these 25 signs the honeymoon is officially over.
25 They're Totally Honest With Each Other, Maybe Too Honest...
When the honeymoon phase passes, two people in a relationship are usually much more honest with each other.
There’s no longer a sense of walking on eggshells and trying to impress the other person so they agree to stay with you.
Now you’ve got them, you’re more inclined to be honest about everything from the things that are bothering you in the relationship to your digestive issues. The next part of the relationship is certainly less Disney and much more real.
24 They Can See Each Other’s Flaws Now
The saying “love is blind” probably derived from the honeymoon phase. When a relationship is new and fresh, people can be so overcome by their strong feelings for this new person that they don’t notice their flaws. As the next stage of the relationship comes along, you’ll see more clearly why the person you’re with isn’t perfect. Accepting their flaws, and having your flaws accepted in the same way, keeps the relationship strong. If that doesn’t happen, things probably won’t last.
23 They Can See The Real Them, Rather Than The Charade
We all tend to put on a bit of a charade when we first start dating someone, either consciously or subconsciously.
In this period, we’re still unsure of ourselves and whether we’re being accepted so we try to appear more likable.
Then the next phase comes along and you let them see the real you. Because nobody can keep up a charade forever, right? The big reveal might involve flaws, but it can also involve deeper personality traits that you might have kept hidden before.
22 The Hard-To-Get Game Is Over
The early days of a relationship are often filled with games of cat and mouse. Instead of being honest about how they’re feeling, a couple keep their guards up and play hard to get. After all, nobody wants to seem too available to someone they’re still trying to impress. But once you’ve impressed them and you reach a certain point, you won’t care about appearing hard to get. You’ll know you can rely on each other and you’ll know where your feelings lie.
21 They No Longer Care How They Look In Front Of Each Other
You’ll likely stop caring about a lot of things once you reach that turning point in a relationship, and one of them will be how you look for each other.
By this time, you would have seen each other in some very compromising positions.
So there’s not as much pressure to keep up with your waxing and put on as much makeup when you’re around each other. By this stage, the relationship should be driven by care and attachment rather than looks and attraction.
20 They Don’t Give Each Other Butterflies Anymore
Some people claim that their partners still give them butterflies even after years and years of marriage. But research shows that all that stress and anxiety associated with dating someone new, whom you really like, tends to dissipate. Your partner goes from being your idolized crush to being that person who’s always there for you and sometimes gets on your nerves. So there’s a lot less pressure involved but also a lot less reason to be nervous and have butterflies.
19 They’re Around Each Other Much More Often (Even When They Don’t Want To Be)
As a relationship blossoms, a couple’s lives will naturally become more entwined and tangled in each other.
As their schedules and social circles fuse, they’ll end up seeing far more of each other than they did when they first started dating.
And that’s not even counting moving in together or getting married. This generally means that you’ll be around them not just when they’re in a good mood on date night, but when they’re cranky on Monday morning and tired on Thursday after work.
18 But They Don’t Have To Spend All Their Time Together
A couple usually comes to spend more time together as they grow closer, but another side effect of leaving the honeymoon phase behind is that they relax around each other more and don’t feel forced to spend absolutely all their time together. Every couple is different, and some are so obsessed with each other in the early stages that they’ll basically live in each other’s pockets. When they leave that phase behind, that will cool off considerably and seeing their partner will be natural, not forced.
17 The Passion Isn’t As Strong As It Once Was
Real chemistry doesn’t fade, but research shows that the intense passion that shows up at the beginning of a relationship does as time goes on.
As your relationship grows, you may find that you’re becoming less passionate about each other.
But it doesn’t have to mean the end of romance or the spark—it just means that you have to put in a bit more effort to keep those things alive. Relationships last when both people are willing to work at them.
16 They Can Be More Vulnerable With Each Other
One of the best things about moving closer to the person you’re with is getting to a point where you can allow yourself to be vulnerable in front of them. This includes having a temper tantrum in front of them, throwing up in front of them, or letting them see you in some other low point of your life. And though it may be embarrassing the first time it happens, it will feel amazing to be supported through something like that.
15 That Includes Crying In Front Of Each Other
Being vulnerable definitely includes crying in front of each other. It might be particularly hard for a male to cry in front of his girlfriend for the first time because society puts a lot of pressure on men to be masculine and not show weakness.
But all humans cry, and being able to do it in front of someone who loves you without being judged is a good feeling.
The first cry is a big moment and could signify the end of the honeymoon phase.
14 They Now Have A Comfortable Routine
As their lives fuse together, two partners will naturally develop a routine or schedule that suits them both. Over time, they’ll work out something that allows them both to work, see their family and friends, keep up their hobbies and, of course, see each other. Some people see this as falling into a rut since life tends to get a little more predictable. But you can still have spontaneous date nights and other surprises waiting for your partner to keep things exciting.
13 They Aren’t As Intimidated Around Each Other’s Family And Friends
The first time meeting your partner’s family and friends is always daunting. But with luck, it will get easier every time you see them until you get to the stage where they don’t intimidate you at all (or as much!).
There are both upsides and downsides to leaving the honeymoon phase behind, and this is definitely one of the upsides, so enjoy it!
Hooray to no longer having to totally freak out every time you’re invited to a family dinner!
12 The Affection Between Them Diminishes A Little
One of the downsides, however, to outgrowing the honeymoon phase is losing some of the affection and closeness you started out with. In the first few months of dating physical affection usually counts for a lot. The feelings are so strong that it may be difficult to keep your hands off each other! As the relationship grows, that side of things may lose some momentum. Physical affection will always be an important part of a relationship, but things might not always be as fiery.
11 They Might Forget To Look After Themselves Like They Once Did
Part of no longer worrying about how you appear to your partner is letting yourself go a little. It’s not unusual for people to start eating whatever they want after years of clean eating, especially once they feel safe and secure in their relationship.
There might not be as much motivation to do things for your health, like stay in shape.
People have even been known to neglect other areas of their health, like their teeth, as they get more comfortable in a relationship.
10 They Get On Each Other’s Nerves More
When you first start dating someone you really like, you might feel like they’re perfect. That’s often why people decide to get married after knowing each other for a short amount of time—they haven’t let the relationship get to the stage where their partner starts to annoy them. The time will come since everybody has their annoying habits. Once the glamor of the honeymoon phase wears off, those annoying habits will shine brightly. Before you know it, you’ll be on your partner’s back about breathing too loudly or cracking their knuckles.
9 There’s A Little More Conflict
Not only will your partner start to annoy more once the relationship gets to a certain stage, but that annoyance will also escalate into conflict.
In the beginning, two people are less likely to fight because they don’t have enough confidence in the relationship yet to say what’s on their minds.
But they will get to a point where they won’t be too scared to pick a fight if something is really annoying them and will defend themselves when they feel attacked.
8 They Start To Resent Each Other For Things
The more time two people spend together, the more likely it is that resentment for past mistakes will start to fester in a relationship. But if left unacknowledged and untreated, resentment can lead to the demise of a relationship. That’s why it’s important to work out any issues that you have with your partner rather than holding a grudge against them. Some people hold things against their significant other for years, which only causes more painful cracks in the relationship.
7 Every Now And Then, They Complain About Each Other To Their Friends
When you first start dating someone new, it’s not uncommon to talk them up to your friends. After all, don’t we all want to impress our friends, even a little bit?
But once your relationship actually strengthens and becomes more complex, you’ll be more likely to treat it so in front of your friends, rather than pretending it's picture-perfect.
You’ll vent about when they’re annoying you rather than making it look like they’re perfect like you once might have.
6 They Don’t Analyze All Of Each Other’s Texts Anymore
Part of having butterflies over a new partner is overreacting every time they text you. And in our day and age, that also includes any time they connect with you on social media, including liking your stuff or commenting on it. Those things will bring a huge smile to your face, and you’ll overthink them. It’s not uncommon to analyze every word of a text from a new partner! But you’ll get to a point where you don’t care about any of that stuff anymore.
5 Sleeping Gets A Lot Less Romantic
When a couple first starts spending the night with each other, there’s usually a lot of cuddling. If you’re like Annie in Bridesmaids, you might even wake up early and position yourself to look like a princess before your partner wakes up.
The time will come, though, when neither of you could care less about what you look like sleeping.
Cuddling is great for bonding, but not so great for a solid sleep, so eventually you’re sleeping patterns are likely to get less romantic.
4 They Don’t Freak Out Over Little Bumps In The Road
A lot of insecurity usually surrounds the beginning of a relationship, and the first time a couple fights, they might believe that they’ve come to the end. But once you’ve been through a lot together, you learn not to panic about every single little bump in the road. You’ll know that your arguments are temporary and your dry spells don’t mean that the end is near. This is one of the positive things about leaving the honeymoon stage behind—it’s nice to have that security.
3 They Might Be Feeling A Little Bored With Each Other
Life gets boring sometimes. The early stages of dating someone new are always exciting, but a lot of that fizzles out as your relationship matures.
It’s normal to feel a little bored, and that’s why it’s a good idea to put effort into keeping things interesting and spicing things up between you.
Don’t be afraid to get creative with it! When you don’t address the fact that you’re feeling bored, it can lead to bigger problems for the relationship.
2 A Lot Less Effort Goes Into Their Dates
Dates themselves tend to look different in the later stages of a relationship from how they do in the beginning. There are many couples who continue to set aside date nights to keep the passion in their relationship, and that’s great. But if you don’t put in a conscious effort, dates tend to go from fancy dinners and formal clothes to Netflix and takeout. That’s a great thing for some people and a little sad for others. You can always inject the romance back in if you want to!
1 They Both Know It’s Not Just A Crush
Perhaps the single best thing about leaving the honeymoon phase is that, if you stay together, you’ll know that what you have is real.
A lot of relationships fizzle out when this phase is over.
This is especially true if they were originally based on physical attraction or infatuation and there was nothing meaningful there. But if you can let the honeymoon era go and still want to be together, you’ll have the reassurance that it’s not just a crush or a fling, but real love.
Sources: Bustle, Hello Giggles, Bolde