You put them on this pedestal where nothing they can do is wrong. You want their attention at all costs. You jump up the moment they call or text. You move mountains just so you can see them when they are available.
These moments and feelings are real. The beginning of romantic relationships trigger a part of our brain that releases dopamine and other chemicals called serotonin and noradrenaline.
What happens in us is similar to what happens when people get addicted to drugs, alcohol or gambling. We develop OCD symptoms regarding our new crush and we then become toast. We often overlook little details because of the fact that the addiction is so strong and feels so real.
Months go by, oftentimes about a year, and the addiction symptoms secede. Without warning or notice, reality shows up at our doorstep. The honeymoon officially ends as chemicals begin regaining balance within us.
What happens when the happy chemicals stop firing in our brain?
That little thing he does when he is about to sneeze starts bugging her. That little joking around thing she does with him isn’t so funny anymore. His daring (bad boy) attitude just seems reckless and stupid now. Her hair tossing (that used to be so cute) is just super obnoxious now…
Both partners must then decide whether or not they want their relationship to go on. This is the moment where you can either decide to bond in the form of friendship or you can walk if you don’t desire that bond with this specific person. This new chemical that provides this bond is called oxytocin and not everyone welcomes it when, or if, it shows up.
If you decide to go on with the relationship, you must then deal with all those small details you first overlooked while doped up on this new human being. Can you overlook his stubbornness? Can you overlook her whiny voice?
I chose to. And I will choose the same with the love of my life over and over again. We sometimes disagree on some topics. We sometimes can’t understand the way the other is thinking and feeling but we learn to love each other even harder because of our differences. We try to get it, and if we can’t, we agree to disagree.
We are a team. That’s the bottom line. I chose him as he is, flaws and all, and vice versa. At the end of the day, I rather deal with his flaws than anyone else’s (not that he even has that many!). He has chosen to do the same to this day with me and all I can do is thank him. Thank him for choosing to love me.
At the end of the day, love is a choice. It might feel like we “fall” in love at first, but we choose to love for the long run. We choose our partner’s flaws over all others’.
And that’s the true beauty of it all. Not all love is sustainable after the honeymoon phase, but those that do make it, by deciding to, enter an entirely different phase in their relationship. The phase where you shift from being solely lovers to becoming partners, confidants and best friends who happen to get naked with each other.
Whatever you choose after the honeymoon phase, just know that there is more depth to love than just an initial phase. Love has many phases, all of which can be beautiful, exciting and fulfilling. Always choose love.