1. The five stages of a break-up
The process of ending a romantic relationship is generally not an easy one. Going by the findings of a study, a person does not decide to break-up with a person all of a sudden. A relationship goes through five stages before a couple actually part their ways, says the study. What are these? Here are all the details of this research.
The researchers at the University of Tennessee developed a ‘Stages of Change in Relationship Status (SCORS)’ questionnaire that quizzed participants about their feelings and the status of their relationship. The participants were made to fill this questionnaire again after two months and as predicted, many of them were contemplating a break-up and 20 per cent had already broken up. After a careful analysis, the researchers came up with these five stages of a relationship.
3. Stage one
The first stage is ‘pre-contemplation’ where even the thought of a break up does not cross a partner’s mind. The relationship is in the honeymoon phase and the partner probably does not want to change anything about it.
4. Stage two
The second stage ‘contemplation’ is when the first sign appears and a person becomes dicey about the romantic relationship. A partner starts thinking whether the relationship is going in the right direction or not, or if something is missing from the relationship.
5. Stage three
In the third stage, ‘preparation’, a person has made up his or her mind and wants to break up. However, a partner might be confused on how to proceed ahead and even take months to discuss the matter.
6. Stage four
Stage four is the phase of ‘action’ when a person has either discussed the matter with the partner or broken up, or has taken some steps to initiate it like reducing the frequency of your daily calls or texts. Hence, some people fall into this stage by simply cutting off all the ties, and others might go a bit slow and gradually stop communication with the partner. But the study says the couple still has not completely broken up!
7. The last stage
The final stage ‘maintenance’ is when one or both the partners might go through a sad phase, resist the urge to meet and return each other’s belongings. However, if they manage to not get back together during this stage, they will probably never get back into the relationship.
8.The bright side
The findings of this study suggest that having negative thoughts about your relationship might indicate it is nearing towards its end. However, acknowledging these thoughts early (i.e. stage two) can help you to recognise the areas where you can work on your relationship and make it stronger, or at least be prepared for the time ahead.