The popularity of the baseball game among youngsters has prompted baseball metaphors to describe various stages of a relationship. Such as the first base, second base, third base, and fourth base.
In a way, the 4 bases of a relationship make it easier to understand the progress of a relationship through the years. This is also used while discussing one’s relationship status or sex life. Even if you haven’t played or watched a game of baseball, you may have heard these baseball metaphors before in connection with your love life.
If you want to know more about relationship bases read on. In this article, you will find the 4 relationship bases described in detail.
What are the 4 bases of love and relationship?
Drawing parallels between the relationship status and the game of baseball is common among young adults and teenagers.
“I couldn’t even get to first base with her.”
“We are getting to the 4th base slowly but surely.”
Using the baseball bases to describe one’s relationship makes it easier to convey the information without getting into too much detail. Even someone not familiar with the game of baseball will know by now that 1st base means the preliminary stage which is often considered as kissing.
And of course, the 4th base means sexual intercourse. The base system used in relationships has gained popularity over the years and is now used to denote intimacy levels. As you get more and more involved in the relationship and closer to your partner, you go from the first base to the second, and then, the third, and the fourth.
If you aren’t familiar with the relationship bases, here’s a detailed description for you.
The 4 bases of a relationship
Stage 1: First base (Characterized by kissing)
The 1st base in relationship is also known as the kissing base. This is the first step you take in a relationship. If you describe your relationship with someone as “reached first base”, it means that you have reached the kissing stage of the relationship.
Typically, the first base doesn’t imply casual pecks on the cheek, lips, or forehead. Definitely not the air kisses. The first base metaphor is usually used to indicate deep kissing or French kissing involving tongue-to-tongue contact.
When you are on first base, it just means that you are doing a lot of open-mouth kissing. This is the stage when excitement builds up and propels you to the second stage. However, this stage is as important in a relationship as any other. Just because it involves only kissing doesn’t mean you can conveniently ignore, overlook, or skip over it. Neither should you rush through it.
Kissing acts as the prelude to what is to come in the relationship. It’s like a movie trailer or a curtain-raiser. It is to be as much enjoyed and relished as the other relationship bases. It sets the mood for the rest of the relationship.
Take your time with the first base because you can never come back to it later.
Stage 2: Second base (Characterized by manual stimulation)
Now, things are getting hotter and have started moving at a faster pace. You are said to be on 2nd base in relationship when you begin to touch each other above the waist. Obviously, it involves fondling breasts with or without the clothes on.
For a first-timer, this is the moment they have been waiting for all their life. They have been ogling at centerspreads in glossy magazines for years now. And, finally, they get to see the real one. Even for an experienced dater, this denotes significant progress.
Some may want to know how long it takes to go from first base to second base. There is no single simple answer to this. It depends on a variety of factors such as the ages of the players, their beliefs, attitude, and culture. Upbringing decides what you consider right and wrong.
For teenagers, especially first-timers, it may take longer to reach second base. In other words, they may need more dates to achieve this level of intimacy.
Stage 3: Third base (Characterized by oral stimulation)
Once you go past the second base, it means you are getting more intimate and serious about the relationship. The 3rd base in relationship involves touching below the waist. It can either be with or without clothing. This is more advanced than the first two relationship bases for sure.
In the third base, the players may choose to discard their clothing and stimulate each other using their mouths and fingers. However, this doesn’t involve sexual intercourse.
Stage 4: Fourth base (Characterized by sexual intercourse)
In baseball parlance, this means the home run. When your relationship has reached the fourth base, it indicates proper sexual intercourse. The comfort and pleasure involved in this make the term “fourth base” meaningful. You feel like you have arrived home when you reach the fourth base in love.
Some reach the fourth base on the first date itself, while others take weeks or months. Rushing through the 4 bases of love is not recommended at all. Moreover, as you progress to the next base, make sure it is safe and consensual. Talk to your partner when sober to know about their consent.
When you are indulging in sexual intercourse, it is also important to know and practice safe sex. This can prevent STDs and pregnancy.
How long does it take for you to move through the 4 bases of a relationship?
As mentioned earlier, it depends on the age of the participants, their beliefs, values, attitude toward sex, and cultural upbringing. There will be a marked difference between the time taken for a casual hookup and a serious relationship.
In a one-night stand, all 4 bases of dating are covered in a matter of a few minutes. The players are not looking for romance or a deeper connection with each other. Neither are they interested in savoring each base.
However, the story is different for a person who wants to build a long-term relationship with their partner. For them, progressing from one base to another may take longer. They prefer enjoying each stage as much as they can before moving on to the next.
There is no fixed timeframe to complete all 4 bases of dating and score a home run. As long as both players are happy with the progress, that is the perfect pace for them. There is no need to compare their speed with that of others. However, trouble may crop up when the partners don’t agree on the pace of the progress. In this case, you may have to find another partner.
Don’t listen to someone who insists on a specific timeframe, guideline, or formula.
How to measure your readiness for the next base?
When you are in a romantic relationship, you may be impatient to progress through the 4 bases of a relationship to score the home run. However, you need to be aware of certain basic things before proceeding to the next relationship bases.
- Proceed to the next base only if you’re comfortable with it. Just don’t do it for the sake of it. Don’t allow the pressure to dictate your relationship.
- Before moving to the next base, understand its implications. Are you serious about the relationship and looking for a long-term commitment? Or are you just fooling around?
- You should consider personal hygiene before getting more serious. If you don’t feel comfortable with the hygiene level of your partner, don’t hesitate to say “no”.
- If you aren’t yet ready for the fourth base, but your partner insists on it, their intentions may not be the same as yours. They may be looking just for physical intimacy.
- If you don’t want to move to the next base, don’t feel compelled to agree to it. You aren’t obliged to offer any explanation for your reluctance. Don’t feel afraid to say “no”.
The baseball analogies for relationship stages were originally coined by youngsters, but they have moved on to more relevant and relatable ones. The present younger generation finds the 4 bases of relationship funny and weird. Their outlook has deviated from these analogies over time. However, this is still prevalent among the youngsters who created them. They are no longer youngsters but middle-aged.
These relationship bases are convenient to use in conversations and give you an idea of what comes next in the overall scheme of things.