Here's How to Know If Your Fling Will Last, According to Relationship Experts

Hadley Mendelsohn
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Christian Vierig/Getty Images

Have you ever dreamt of experiencing a passionate fling á la Dirty Dancing or The Holiday? Same. And even if you've imagined (or experienced) a fleeting romance, there's probably also a fraction of you wondering why some passionate beginnings develop into happy, healthy relationships while others fizzle out fast. But as Business Insider notesthere's most likely to be long-term potential if you're not only attracted to your partner's extreme traits, but you also relate to them. If you're too dissimilar, the same exciting qualities that initially drew you in may be the ones that break your heart later.

The source of those early feelings can be tricky to locate. So here's a key question to help you determine if this new relationship will extend beyond a transient fling, or if you're headed for a deep dive into the dark cauldron of fatal attraction: Are his or her extreme traits exciting and endearing, or are they unpredictable and alienating? According to Diane Felmee's research in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, if you resonate more with the latter, then it's probably just a fling. On the other hand, if you share a few prominent traits and values, your feelings probably won't waver, and there could be promising potential for a healthy relationship.

Still not sure where you stand? Shean M. Horan, Ph.D., a therapist who specializes in romantic relationships, highlights a few more qualities to look out for. Pay attention to changes in your perception of them (i.e., fun-loving or reckless, confident or controlling, and spontaneous or unreliable). If these differences are confusing you in the honeymoon stage, then there are bound to be conflicts later on, too.

Find out more ways to predict the trajectory of your new relationship, and share your insight with us in the comments below.

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