The GLAMOUR Guide to relationship milestones
Think once you’ve locked lips with a new flame it will soon become old hat? Rest assured, you still have some pretty major milestones left to navigate. GLAMOUR takes you down the road of the most memorable firsts – big and small, lovely and infuriating – that you can expect to come across in your relationship.
Kisses get all the glory but flirting is just plain old fun, whether your relationship with the lucky recipient lasts for decades or just a couple of heady, butterfly-filled days. This is the time when you’re allowed to swoon and ignore all signs of potential compatibility problems. Heaven!
Ah, the relationship test drive and, hopefully, you’re both on your best behaviour. These things rarely go off without a hitch, though. Let’s just hope that some day you can both laugh about his failed attempt at old-fashioned chivalry or your near-fatal choking accident.
Related: What to wear on a first date
Whether you enjoy these two very important firsts on the same night, or weeks apart, they’re both filling in a key part of the relationship equation – that little thing called chemistry. The newness of it all is undeniably exciting, and probably what you’ll start to yearn for once you’ve settled comfortably with someone but, for your own sanity, try to remember that both sex and the kissing get better with time.
Related: How long should I wait to have sex?
First morning after
Another test, which, ideally, neither of you run away from, make excuses or say anything resembling, “So, I had a lot of fun last night…” before trailing off into cliche hell. Hopefully, when you open your eyes, you think, “Yes… nice one!”.
First phone call
With half the world gone phone-o-phobe – and with texting, email, Twitter and Facebook right at our fingertips – an extended actual phone call means more than ever. Even the best of us get a bit ruffled by the thought of actually dialling someone’s number and filling the dead air with fascinating yet casual conversation but if the call goes just right, you might regress and follow your hang up with a silly victory dance.
First sign of commitment
At some point, you’re going to realise you’re actually together as a couple. Whether you have a “Where is this going?” talk or manage to solidify your relationship in a less formal way (wardrobe space, anyone?), locking things down is a big step.
First secret crush
Inevitably, at some point in a long-term relationship, someone else will catch your attention. There may be some batting of eyelashes involved but as long as you pass the fidelity test with flying colours, don’t beat yourself up – being attracted to others is a natural part of life and you will just need to manage it.
Everyone knows that technically it only matters if you like them and blah, blah, blah. Admit it, though, weren’t you terrified that your friends wouldn’t like them and elated when they said they did? Of course, you want to get to know their friends too, and get a sense of how he treats you when his group is around.
Jetting off for a holiday, just the two of you, could be wildly sexy and romantic. It could also make you want to kill him. Either way, you’ll remember it forever.
We’ll be the first to admit, babies aren’t for everyone. But lots of couples choose to indulge their nesting instincts with a pet. Just remember to agree on who “officially” owns the critter as a bit of an unofficial prenup. If necessary, you can pretend you just want to make sure you agree on who takes responsibility for pet chores but really, you’ve got to make sure you don’t have to deal with a weird, furry custody battle if the relationship goes south.
Suddenly, “we” like Lebanese food, “we” love to work out and “we” have strong opinions on who should win the next election. You’re deliriously in love and everyone around you is tired of hearing about your endlessly shared opinions and activities. Whatever.
First three little words
Saying “I love you” is fabulous. Hearing it back is pretty good too. And thank goodness you can stop all that ridiculous talk about enjoying spending time together or really liking each other a lot or other non-L-word expressions of affection.
Related: Am I in love… or in lust?
First bank account
Forget all the lovey-dovey stuff. Sharing a bank account means trust and long-term planning and sharing of your money. If that’s not commitment, then what is?
First breakup and reunion
No one wants to be that annoying on-off couple, but many happy pairs have been through that one “off” and lived to tell the tale. It doesn’t mean that your relationship necessarily means less than those of people who have only fantasised about breaking up with their significant other.
First “our place”
People always talk about compromise in relationships and you’ll get plenty of chances to test that skill once you’re sharing the same roof with a man. Suddenly, you both have to negotiate the most basic routines of life, from who will take out the rubbish to who should take on the responsibility of vaccuuming once a week (fun, fun, fun).
If you’re crazy about this person, you’re probably going to love any gift they give you, be it a standard flower bouquet or an acrylic sweater that’s three sizes too big. There is a possibility, however, that you’ll be left to put your hand “I love it” (read: absolutely hate it) face on. If they do manage to hit the nail on the head with a gift that’s perfectly tailored to your taste and personality, they deserve major brownie points.
First photo op
You’re kind of squinting and he’s wearing a shirt that he got for free at a pub. It may not be a red carpet, but it’s adorable.
First parent meeting
Unless you’ve got the coolest, most laid-back parents on earth, you’re probably going to feel a bit nervous about introducing them to your new partner – and he probably feels the same. So take comfort in the fact that you wouldn’t even be going through the trouble if they weren’t so important to you. Plus, you have that other milestone to look forward to – the time when you can feel comfortable leaving them alone with your parents. Don’t know what they talk about with your dad, don’t want to know.
All couples fight but it’s how you do it that counts. If your relationship has staying power, you should both be able to fight fair and even work up the courage to apologise if you’ve done wrong. Once you clear that hurdle, you know that the two of you are actually able to work through your differences (because let’s face it, you simply aren’t going to find someone who agrees with you on everything).
Related: Is arguing good for a relationship?
A year together is no longer the “forever” it may have seemed like back in your teens but it’s still often seen as a sign that your relationship has long-term potential (and somewhat unfairly, you’re unlikely to get much breakup sympathy if you don’t make it past the one-year mark).
First psychic connection
You say, “Oh, the thing!” and he says, “We’ll do it tomorrow.” This actually happens – a US study found that while couples don’t exactly read each others’ thoughts, their brains do eventually sync up, resulting in a special language that depends less on typical sentence structure and more on these shared brain patterns.
When one of you has to go through something terrible, the other one has a chance to show that they can really support the other person. It’s awful but it shows that the two of you can weather the storms of real life together.
First forever talk
Wedding ring or not, babies or cocker spaniels – when you laugh about what a funny old couple you’ll be or talk about whether you think there really will be flying cars in 50 years (“and more importantly, can we afford one?”), it’s pretty cool that you both take it for granted that you’ll still be together, without blinking an eye.
Taken from GLAMOUR UK. Click here to read the original.
Not sure whether your coupling will stand the test of time? Read our five relationship warning signs to look out for!