Everyone would love to know the secret to having a great, healthy relationship with your significant other.
This would be the case, particularly at this time of the year. June is considered to be the most popular wedding month by Americans.
However, these days, more than half of marriages tend to fail. The words of “cherish… through sickness and health” really don’t apply as well as it did a few generations ago.
Psychologists have long pondered the issue of the rise of divorces and separation in this country. After decades of analysis, some may finally have somewhat of an idea of the secret to good, long-lasting relationships.
In an article in the Atlantic, John Gottman of the Gottman Institute described his research in which he took in newlywed couples, ran tests on them when asked certain questions, then followed up on them six years down the road.
From the data received, Gottman has concluded that the couples eventually fell into two groups: the masters and the disasters. The masters were the ones still happily married and the disasters were the pairings which had broken down or were massively unhappy.
Gottman related some of his data, noting that the disaster couples may have appeared calm when answering the initial questions, their electrodes and physiology showed fast blood flow, active sweat glands, and accelerated heart rates. The more active these signs were shown in the initial interview, the more likely the marriage would fall apart.
The disasters tended to have fight-for-flight tendencies in their relationships. They were either defensive or were preparing to attack or be attacked by even mundane questions. The masters were actually much calmer and relaxed judging by their electrodes. Instead, they were comfortable with their connection to each other.
Gottman found through further study that spouses that respond to their significant other’s casual comments instead of turning away were more likely to develop intimacy and trust with one another – and therefore were more likely to stay together.
Those that show kindness and generosity toward their partners on even the most trivial of the comments were more likely to stay together compared to those to replied with hostility and criticism to casual comments.
So the next time your partner makes a comment, try and be considerate toward them and respond in a positive manner. Don’t turn away or say you are busy with something else.
Featured image: CBS