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Beyond Initial Attraction
From the first stage of relationships—passion—there is a progression towards what relationship experts consider the second and third levels of being a couple—emotional intimacy and commitment. "That passionate part really only lasts a maximum of two and a half years, if people are in continuous contact," says Palmer. This stage relies heavily on nonverbal attraction. Emotional intimacy can develop very early on, but that's "what can grow and keep partners attracted to each other."