The Secret To Healing Heartbreak (M)

Find out how the power of suggestion can reshape our experience of heartache.

Find out how the power of suggestion can reshape our experience of heartache.

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Revealing The Unconscious Thoughts That Shape Your Relationship (M)

Learn why positivity might not be enough to save your love life.

Learn why positivity might not be enough to save your love life.

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Why People Who Are Bullied Develop Relationship Problems (M)

How bullying in adolescence plants seeds of suspicion that lead to mental health struggles later in life.

How bullying in adolescence plants seeds of suspicion that lead to mental health struggles later in life.

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This Is How Long It Takes To Recover From Divorce And Breakups (M)

Researchers tracked over 200,000 people to reveal the hidden impact of breakups on mental health.

Researchers tracked over 200,000 people to reveal the hidden impact of breakups on mental health.

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One-Third Of Couples Display The Most Harmful Relationship Pattern

This type of couple were twice as likely to break up.

This type of couple were twice as likely to break up.

The worst relationship pattern between a couple is a dramatic style involving many ups and downs and wildly swinging commitment, research finds.

Dramatic couples like to do things separately and tend to focus on the negative aspects of each other.

This type of couple is twice as likely to break up as those that fall into other categories.

Their relationships were the most likely to go backwards over time.

One-third of couples in the study fell into the ‘dramatic’ category.

Dr Brian Ogolsky, the study’s first author, said:

“These couples have a lot of ups and downs, and their commitment swings wildly.

They tend to make decisions based on negative events that are occurring in the relationship or on discouraging things that they’re thinking about the relationship, and those things are likely to chip away at their commitment.”

The conclusion comes from research on 376 dating couples.

After tracking their relationship commitment for 9 months, the psychologists put them into one of four categories.

Dr Ogolsky explained:

“The four types of dating couples that we found included the dramatic couple, the conflict-ridden couple, the socially involved couple, and the partner-focused couple.”

Partner-focused couples

In contrast to the dramatic type, the partner-focused couples — who made up around one-third of the sample — were the most likely to stay together.

Dr Ogolsky said:

“These partners are very involved with each other and dependent on each other, and they use what’s happening in their relationship to advance their commitment to deeper levels.

People in these couples had the highest levels of conscientiousness, which suggests that they are very careful and thoughtful about the way they approach their relationship choices.”

Conflicting couples

Couples that were full of conflict — 12 percent in this study — were still not as rocky as dramatic couples, the researchers found.

Dr Ogolsky said:

“These couples operate in a tension between conflict that pushes them apart and passionate attraction that pulls them back together.

This kind of love may not be sustainable in the long term–you’d go crazy if you had 30 to 50 years of mind-bending passion.

Partners may change from one group to another over time,”

Socially-involved couples

Like partner-focused couples, socially-involved couples (the remaining 19 percent) had very good relationships.

They shared their social network and used it to make decisions about their commitment.

Dr Ogolsky said:

“Ideally long-term relationships should be predicated on friendship-based love.

And having mutual friends makes people in these couples feel closer and more committed.”

Naturally, couples can move between the categories over time as their relationship matures.

The study was published in the Journal of Marriage and Family (Ogolsky et al., 2015).

How To Unleash The Beautiful Emotion That Transforms Relationships (M)

The transformative power of this emotion in romantic relationships.

The transformative power of this emotion in romantic relationships.

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The Childhood Sign That Your Adult Relationships Will Last (M)

The one thing that predicts satisfying romantic relationships.

The one thing that predicts satisfying romantic relationships.

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The Type Of Arguments That Reveal If A Couple Is Really Unhappy Or Not

How to decide which fights are worth having.

How to decide which fights are worth having.

Every couple argues, but happy couples focus on solving issues that can be solved, research finds.

The key is being able to choose which issues need to be tackled and which can safely be left on the back burner.

Issues like household chores and how to spend leisure time are more solvable — so happy couples tend to talk about them.

Difficult or intractable issues, like physical intimacy and health problems, tend to be avoided by happy couples.

These issues can lead to embarrassment and conflict, which is why happy couples avoid them.

Dr Amy Rauer, the study’s first author, said:

“Happy couples tend to take a solution-oriented approach to conflict, and this is clear even in the topics that they choose to discuss.”

The study included two age groups of happy couples: 57 couples were in their 30s and 64 couples were in their 70s.

All were asked to rank their most to least serious relationship issues.

The most serious issues were money, leisure time activities, intimacy, household and communication.

Older couples added health to this list of serious issues.

The least serious issues were jealousy, religion and family.

Observing the couples revealed that they focused on issues that could be resolved, such as how to spend leisure time and manage household chores.

Dr Rauer said:

“Rebalancing chores may not be easy, but it lends itself to more concrete solutions than other issues.

One spouse could do more of certain chores to balance the scales.

Focusing on the perpetual, more-difficult-to-solve problems may undermine partners’ confidence in the relationship.”

More difficult issues, like health problems and physical intimacy, tended to be avoided.

Issues like these are likely to be embarrassing and lead to more conflict.

Dr Rauer said:

“Since these issues tend to be more difficult to resolve, they are more likely to lead to less marital happiness or the dissolution of the relationship, especially if couples have not banked up any previous successes solving other marital issues.”

The results also showed that couple together for longer tended to argue less, suggesting they knew which fights were worth picking.

Dr Rauer said:

“If couples feel that they can work together to resolve their issues, it may give them the confidence to move on to tackling the more difficult issues.”

The study was published in the journal Family Process (Rauer et al., 2019).

The Toxic Family Ties That Are The Most Challenging Relationships You’ll Ever Face (M)

Relationships were labelled ‘difficult’ when the other person demanded support, but did not reciprocate.

Relationships were labelled 'difficult' when the other person demanded support, but did not reciprocate.

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