Saturn is the planet of responsibility, maturity, and reality. Saturn is not fun and play, romance and romps in the hay. Saturn takes everything seriously, especially commitment.
Saturn is the late bloomer, so it may not commit early in life. But once Saturn commits, Saturn is in it for life, and does not take that responsibility lightly.
In love, this means Saturn is one of the planets that can show taking the next step and committing to someone.
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Saturn Transits & Love
Deciding to commit to someone often comes under a positive Saturn transit (sextiles and trines) to the natal or progressed 5th or 7th house cusps or rulers or natal Venus. The 5th house rules love, the 7th house ruler relationships and commitment, and Venus is the planet of love and relationships.
When transit Saturn is touring the natal 5th house of love, 7th house of relationships, or 8th house of intimacy, this is often a period when people decide to get really serious about their relationships. No more just goofing off and no strings attached. It's time to settle down and bring some stability to your love life.
Hard Saturn transits (squares and oppositions) can actually show periods that are really hard on your relationships, and you may question your loyalty (or theirs), and feel restricted, stifled, suffocating in relationships that aren't really good for you. When that's the case, you have to either work on the problems to make it better, or walk away.
Saturn conjunctions can make it imperative for you to abide by Saturn and act completely responsibly in relationships, fully committed, and with healthy connections. Lacking that, your relationships can act to hold you back, and make you feel overwhelmed.
Saturn & Synastry
When you have a Saturn connection with someone in synastry, this can be tricky. On the one hand, this can show that you take the relationship seriously and can commit more easily to one another. On the other hand, it can show that this connection has a tendency to make you feel overwhelmed, insecure, or limited. The latter tends to be less of an issue if you're both in a good place in your lives, know who you are, and come together as complete individuals. Without that, this connection can be extremely difficult.
To counter Saturn, you usually need to focus on a little bit of Jupiter. Saturn restricts while Jupiter expands, and Jupiter helps bring some lightness, some brevity, some air that's often needed with Saturn.
Having strong Jupiter in your natal chart can help you to avoid being overcome by the weight of Saturn; having positive Jupiter transits while undergoing hard Saturn transits can help as well (but hard Jupiter transits or conjunctions can make it worse!); and having a strong Jupiter (or Venus) in the composite chart can help you both to focus on more of the positives. If there’s no Jupiter energy? This might be a relationship that crushes you!
Suggested Reading: Article in the love astrology series: Mars in love, Jupiter in love, Uranus in love, Neptune in love, Pluto in love, the 12th house and love, Chiron in love, eclipses and love, retrogrades in love, the Lunar Nodes in love, and Asteroids of Your Name in love