Search Menu

The Kübler-Ross Stages of Shipping

The Kübler-Ross Stages of Shipping


Our hearts are with you in this trying time. As one begins to actualize a new "ship," emotions can reach a boiling point, often escalating beyond our control. That's why it's helpful to keep in mind the stages of shipping, and to remember that they are natural steps on the road to accepting and understanding your new ship. See the stages listed below, along with commonly reported thought patterns of those experiencing the process.

1. Denial: Nah, it's not canon. I can't really see those two together. They're cute or whatever, just not like that. I guess I can see why the fandom loves them so much. If I squint.

2. Anger: Wait, what. Did I seriously just think about searching for fan art? That's ridiculous. You're better than this, self. Don't you da—oh. Oh, geez. So many people ship this. So many talented people are making so much beautiful art. Well—maybe one fanfiction wouldn't hur—NO. Pull yourself together!

3. Bargaining: Okay. Whooo. Breathe. All I have to do is go back to this pre-established ship I already love. Easy. Let's find some of my favorite posts about those two characters, and I'll forget this new one. See? It's working already!

4. Depression: Oh my glob, it's 3 a.m. I did not just spend the last four hours reading fanfiction about these two. How did this half page of my own musings even get to the screen? I don't remember typing this. Ugh, they're so beautiful. Ugh, they work so well together. So well. Nobody else on the show sees it—not even them. But that's the beauty. They are so in sync. They are so freaking in sync. Oh nooo, has it seriously been a year since this fanfic updated?

5. Acceptance: *hastily reblogs ship* That was some spot-on commentary. *gazes dreamily at screen* Does this fanart come in a higher resolution? *fanfic updates* This is taking over my life and I am 100% fine with this.

We hope this list is helpful to you and your loved ones as you ship. If you suspect a loved one is in the midst of this process, be sure to offer your support, reminding them that it's okay to ship anyone they like.

—Messrs. Kübler and Ross

Admitting your problem is the first step to overcoming it—do you see yourself in the above stages, shippers?

Topics: Books, Life
Tags: crushes, books, authors, fanfic, shipping, is this you?, stages, is this you sweetheart?, we've all been there, where did this embroidered duvet of katniss and finnick come from?!

Write your own comment!

About the Author

Kath is a fangirl first and writer second. She lives in Cincinnati, Ohio, which is way more fun than it sounds. If she isn't flailing around on Tumblr or writing articles, she's probably out running, reading, or thinking about food.

Wanna contact a writer or editor? Email