Once you've found your twin flame (not the same thing as a soulmate, FYI), get ready to embark on a REAL emotional ride. This type of relationship isn't as cut-and-dry as finding your soulmate and living happily ever after. In fact, twin flame partnerships are known for being somewhat tumultuous.
When it comes to the stages of finding your twin flame, experts argue on how many there are, but these five to seven are common. So, whether you're in the throes of a twin flame relationship, or you've got a feeling the universe is about to intro you to the love of your life and you wanna prep, here are the seven ups and downs of a twin flame relationship.
1. Preparing to Meet Your Twin Flame
Do you have a strange sensation that someone is waiting for you or that something big is around the corner? This is stage one, says Chris Pleines, a relationship expert. This is also when you'd feel a yearning that things (or someone) is about to turn your world upside down, explains relationship expert Mary, J. Gibson.
2. The Awakening: Meeting Your Twin Flame
Now, it's totally possible that you've already met your twin flame, explains Pleines, but this is the stage where you'd start to feel as though you're really falling for this person. "Falling for them would be the easiest thing to do, but be careful," explains Pleines. "This might not last long because these kinds of relationship are prone to inner turmoil and separation."
Gibson also refers to this period as the "awakening" — where your relationship is filled with coincidences and everything about you two may feel like destiny. You're going OTT with how compatible you two are.
3. The Conflict, or The Test
Welp, the honeymoon period is OVER. Here is where things start to get a little tricky. Since your twin flame is a mirror of yourself, this is when you might start to find some traits of your twin flame to be kinda irksome. Maybe you don't like that they're super emotionally withholding without realizing that you, yourself, are like that sometimes. Or, perhaps they call out your behavior first. Either way, "you or your partner will be the one discovering unlikable traits, which will trigger the feeling of anxiety, which might rock the relationship," Pleines explains.
4. The Crisis
In any relationship, problems are unavoidable. This stage is meant to stress test how you and your twin flame handle yourselves in a tough situation. This phase can be "a catalyst for a deeper bond," says Gibson. Pleines adds that "the conflicts that arise during this stage and how you solve them will ensure how long your relationship will last."
5. The Chase
This is where separation occurs. Though it might not be a permanent separation — twin flame relationships are notorious for being on-and-off. This stage is inevitable, and will arise no matter how you worked through the previous stage, says Gibson. One of the twin flames will keep distancing themselves, which will result in a push and pull dynamic that eventually must come to an end, aka a separation. "One cannot keep chasing and the other can’t keep running forever..." adds Gibson.
6. Relenting/The Surrender
Say goodbye to your ego, because you've got some growing to do. This time apart from your twin flame is when you're supposed to grow your soul and reflect upon your time spent together, says Pleines. "The need to control has to be given up," explains Gibson. "Surrendering doesn't mean giving up on the connection, but accepting that destiny can't be escaped."
It's not goodbye forever necessarily though. Pleines says that if you do eventually come across your twin flame again, the time you spent reflecting during this phase will help you improve as a person. This stage should be seen as a positive, allowing you and your twin flame to be released from the past, and encouraging you both to live more consciously in the moment.
7. The Reunion
While everyone isn't even lucky enough to come across their twin flame in this lifetime, you're even luckier if you're able to reunite with your twin flame after having gone through the journey above, explains Pleines. "If you focus your energies towards improving yourself in order to meet your twin flame halfway, then it's most likely that you’ll be able to reconnect. Once you do, you’ll have a union of mind, body, and soul—a perfect trifecta some can't even begin to imagine."
This stage means balance is restored, says Gibson. You'll take the lessons from the tough times to better understand each other and your love. This stage is all about acceptance, peace, and reciprocal understanding. If you're given the chance to reunite with your twin flame, you better never let 'em go again.