How fast is too fast when it comes to the stages of a relationship and falling in love? Is there a specific amount of time people should be dating or in a friendship before moving further along? This is quite a common question. In my experience, the answer to it actually depends on each individual situation.
Time can tell you how much you get along with a person – or despise them (you know it’s true), depending on your circumstance. However, the length of time it takes to figure things out will be different for each couple. There really is no magic number.
I’ve seen couples seemingly only be together for a couple weeks get married and end up happily together for years and years with no issues. I’ve also seen couples who take the time to get to know each other end in misery through a painful divorce shortly after marriage. I’ve also seen the opposite for both.
The happiest couples I know do not think about their relationship in terms of dates and times that they reach each stage, but in terms of actual feelings. While moving things along at a pace that seems fast to some outside the relationship may seem like a bad idea to some, it can be a good thing for those in the relationship. The same can be said for waiting longer. Which one it is should only be determined by those in the relationship at hand.
Based on everything I’ve experienced and witnessed, the most important factor is that both people are comfortable with the way things are flowing. Neither person should feel overwhelmed, rushed, or held back. Both people should be content with the level at which the relationship is on at all times. They should think things through, discuss where they stand on important matters, and know and respect each other’s feelings and boundaries.
While there is no magic number at which you’ll find the perfect time for every relationship to advance, be sure that no matter how fast or slow your relationship moves, it is what both people want. Moving “too fast” isn’t always a bad thing. But it can be if it isn’t properly thought through as individuals, as well as by the couple as a team.
For some people, jumping right in will lead to good things and be the right decision. But if there is any hesitation at all, there is no harm in waiting.
*I originally published this elsewhere (no longer published there).