When is the right time to reveal the real you in a relationship?  You’ve probably heard of situations where the first time two people meet, their appearance and personality made an impression on each other, even going as far as believing they have met the right person for a relationship. 

Laina Makuzha-LOVE by DESIGN

From the initial rush of falling in love, to forming a deep friendship and even bringing children into the world, relationships make up a huge part of our lives, that is why  it is healthy to pay attention to them and discuss issues around them — the positives, the challenges and the in-betweens.

With all the excitement of finding that special someone that we were discussing last week, there’s however, a scenario that puzzles many relationship seekers, and for some reason the experience seems prevalent with women than men.

Picture this: You meet a guy you really like. Sparks fly. 

He seems really cool and into you. He says all the right stuff, makes all the right moves. You’re constantly texting each other sweet nothings throughout the day.

There seems to be a connection. Nothing excites you more than this feeling you have about him. It feels like you’re cruising in the perfect direction together. 

Then suddenly, or at some point, something changes — the attention from him is less, maybe affection dwindles — it could be after a few dates, months or even years into the relationship. 

And you wonder what happened, sometimes even imagining the worst case scenarios: Was it something you said, was it something you did? Is it you or has this person lost interest?

 If this sounds familiar, stop beating yourself about it unnecessarily. It’s probably none of the above.  Anyone in a relationship will know there’s no one-size-fits-all ‘road-map’ when it comes to navigating the waters of love. It could be that you missed something, some trait, some signal or red flag in the beginning.

 The question is when is the right time to put your cards on the table in terms of expectations and who you really are? When is the right time to say those sweet words “I love you”? 

When is it acceptable to show true colours to our newly beloved? And when should we reveal the events of our past, and our dreams for the future? There’s a delicate balance to be struck, as you find that honesty is highly regarded as the best approach in a relationship, yet some experts will say there are certain things that can wait and be revealed later in a relationship. I reckon couples have to talk about things, discuss deal breakers from the get go and lay bare any important information to avoid breaking someone’s heart later or ruining the relationship.

A survey done on 1 000 British had very interesting results which for lack of space, I will share with those who request for it.

The summary of its findings was that men are twice as likely to declare love after just 1 week; 1 in 3 women waited a year before “dressing down”; 1 in 5 people never admitted their number of past lovers; Talk of the future is preferably delayed for 1-2 years. So some people prefer to hold back on certain matters, which experts say can be done with wisdom, but it also means when these matters are revealed later, it may seem as though someone has changed, meanwhile this is who they were from the beginning.

 But I’ve heard questions such as: why do some people change when they know you love them? Why do some people turn into chameleons in a relationship? Out of the answers I’ve come across, one man on Quora, the social Q&A website,  put it this way: “They actually don’t change when being loved. 

Being loved means that they can show more of their real self. Seeing new behaviours and discussions seems to show a change, but it’s more of a revealing things that have been held in secret.

“People keep secrets about how they actually feel, how they act out their feelings, what they think about feelings-actions and what they believe. They do this to avoid alienating other people who may be sensitive to their real self. This carries over into a serious relationship and could stall obtaining greater love if honesty is not pursued. Some partners actively cultivate the lies to maintain control of a relationship. Control kills love.

“If loving seems to bring about changes, that’s a very good thing. As partners share honesty, they can see more of the real person that they are with, and then they have the opportunity to accept them for who they really are. Acceptance is the sign of love”  As I read this, I  felt this was well articulated and closer to reality. What is your take though dear reader?

 You’ve probably heard of situations where the first time two people meet, their appearance and personality made an impression on each other, even going as far as believing they have met the right person for a relationship. 

Never at any time would it appear either of them might break the other’s heart, yet such an outcome sometimes blind-sides them. How do things get to that? What did they miss? Are there signs to look out for? Should one get into a relationship with one eye open, to scan and look out for red flags or does that ruin the fun of falling in love?

Some people believe it is strategic to hold back or pretend certain things in order to see someone’s true colours, for example when a well-off individual pretends not to have money, just to test a potential partner’s position regarding money and related matters. 

Does this work? I would love to hear your views, experiences, your deal breakers as well as tips that might help someone. We can discuss these in more detail in the next edition.

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