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How do I know if I love them? And if we’re really compatible?
Let’s cut right to the chase… If you need to ask, then we have a problem.
You see, for a relationship to start in the first place usually means there’s a mutual spark of attraction, a certain charm and compatibility of interests that got you through the initial socially complicated phase of connecting, flirting, and communicating your interest.
At this stage either “puppy love” blossoms rather naturally or the relationship fizzles.
If the relationship has survived this long, puppy love turns into full-blown “honeymoon phase”. Both parties are on their best behaviour and out to impress. We assume the best of each other because a part of us we wants to believe we’ve found the perfect partner.
It’s usually not until the first big fight that we would even start to question the relationship. When this happens is highly variable, but for most it’s between 3-9 months. Once that happens it’s common to exit the honeymoon phase and enter the “power struggle”.
From this point onwards is where people generally start asking the question “are we compatible?” And “do I really love them?”.
Couples who stay together during the power struggle experience intense fighting and arguing and this may continue for years or may subside. However the relationship is never the same. Resentment sets in. The passion wanes and intimacy can also fall by the wayside.
The relationship is no longer wholehearted! It’s become half-hearted or close-hearted. And here’s the kicker, if you’re now asking if you’re compatible and if you love them, then you’ve closed your heart! At least partially.
I’m not saying it’s all your fault, they have likely done similar. I’m saying there’s good news, because any problem you can own and control, you can change and repair.
The only other reason you may not be compatible is if your core values don’t align. There are ways to work this out and even to negotiate around shared values.
But the first step is to seek support from a relationship coach to help you open your heart and give this relationship and any future relationships the best possible chance and allow you to fully experience the joy of love again.