Stage of Love #5 - Mature Love: The Eternal Honeymoon
posted: Apr. 16, 2021.
It is said that only 5% of all couples ever get to this promised land of milk and honey. To reach the stage of mature love the couple had to successfully navigate the stages of conflict, individuation, self-actualization and recommitment.
Mature love is a grand accomplishment in the mastery of love. Those lucky few that experience the joy and synergy of mature love are usually in the last quarter of their life. Here the couple shares a deep connection and both support each other’s dreams, aspirations and growth. Love, respect and strong friendship are all markers of this stage. Disagreements are few and partners easily resolve them through mutual respect, understanding and humor.
All shared tasks of life have been largely accomplished and the couple shifts the focus to the community. Here we work to contribute to the greater good. We nurture people and causes that will outlast our personal time on this planet.
Harmony and synergy of this last stage of love make couples therapy unnecessary. In more than a decade of my California couples therapy practice I have never encountered a couple in this stage of relationship seeking the help of a couples therapist. As I was writing these series I consulted several other couples therapists in Los Angeles, San Francisco and San Diego. They all agreed that couples in the stage of mature love have successfully navigated their relationship and do not require couples therapy.
Markers of the Mature Love stage are support of each other’s growth, deep respect, love, strong friendship, altruism and philanthropy.
The Task of this stage is to share the love and accomplishments of the relationship with the community and the world.
The Challenge here is in shifting our focus from the small “We” of our family to the greater “We” of the humanity.
Failure is not possible in this stage. It is the final developmental stage of love, which marks a great accomplishment.
Duration is until the passing of one of the partners.