As a rule, when we get into a serious relationship, we hope that it will last a long, long time. But is it possible to predict how long it will actually exist? Researchers have been trying to answer this question for years.
Let's say that a partner's propensity to cheat is an obvious factor that is highly likely to affect the marriage duration, but it is not the only one. Experts have found that based on signs, some of which are completely harmless at first glance, you can also predict if your relationship is likely to last long or not.
1. Great passion and strong affection at the beginning of a relationship
Findings from a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology show that partners who are too attached at the very beginning of the relationship often split up or get divorced.
Divorce mediator and coach Leslie Caro explains it this way: "Sometimes, when couples show their feelings too intensely, it can be a kind of compensation for other things that their relationship really lacks." In fact, there is nothing wrong with hugs and kisses if they are sincere outbursts of feelings. However, it is important to be sure that you are not trying to ignore existing problems with their help.
Psychologist Claire Stott, a data analyst for one of the popular dating apps, also emphasizes that the passion fades over time in any relationship, which is a natural process. "Most people perceive their "honeymoon phase" as well as its end appropriately," she says. "Usually, this is not a dramatic end, but a natural stage. But if your relationship was too intense at the very beginning, it might seem to you that the "honeymoon phase" ended abruptly. Thus, you go from one extreme to another." The relationship of such couples very rarely crosses this line.
2. Completely conflict-free relationship
"Relationships between partners who don't fight at all or settle differences too quickly usually don't last long," says Leslie Caro. A poll conducted by sociologist Joseph Grenny found that couples who "sort things out effectively" are ten times happier than those who prefer to keep quiet about their problems. And there is an explanation for this.
For example, let's say, in order not to inflate the conflict, one of the spouses pretends to agree with their partner or suggests postponing the issue to a more opportune moment.
What is really happening? Day after day, a gulf between them is growing, which one day will lead to an unfortunate and complete misunderstanding between them.
After all, harmonious relationships cannot be maintained where there is no communication. And healthy conflicts (when partners argue their positions and listen to each other) are also part of communication.
3. Expensive engagement ring
A 2014 study from Emory University suggests that people who have spent significant amounts of money on engagement or wedding rings are more likely to get divorced in the future. In particular, men who buy rings worth more than $2,000 are three times more likely to divorce than those who spend less on this purchase.
In interpreting these unexpected findings, experts believe that they may be related to how the couple goes through periods of financial difficulties in the future.
Initially, partners spend more money than they can afford to make their wedding perfect. Then similar episodes begin to repeat - for example, with purchases of expensive real estate or travel beyond the family budget.
And after such "chic" spending, a "black" period will inevitably come, a financial hole, from which one must get out. Not every couple can stand this lifestyle.
However, this explanation does not consider those who earn enough to buy wedding rings for the above amounts. So the experts have to understand the reasons for the amazing statistics thoroughly.
4. You believe that your partner is "the one" (based on sexual compatibility)
"If you have a great intimate life and you start to think you've found your perfect partner, it could be a sign that you won't enjoy such amazing sex for too long," says sexologist Jess O'Reilly. Of course, it's great to find someone with whom you have a lot in common (including good sexual compatibility).
However, according to many studies, people who believe that their intimate partner is their "destiny" are much more likely to be disappointed in relationships (including their sexual component) in the future. And yet, there is a fine line here. The opposite perspective usually awaits those who believe in "sexual growth." That is, they realize that intimate life and relationships, in general, require constant work. So it's not bad at all to attach great importance to what is happening in the bedroom. But it is important to be able to relate to this correctly.
5. Your DNA
In 2017, they conducted an experiment in which they interviewed foster children, comparing their divorce histories with their adoptive and biological parents. The experts wanted to determine whether the unsuccessful end of the test subjects' relationship was connected with the environment in which they grew up or with their DNA. As a result, it was found that the propensity to divorce is "biological," and genetic factors affect the "transmission of divorce from generation to generation."
6. Constant quarrels over housework
Disputes over dividing household chores may seem like a trifle as they are familiar to many couples who live together. Such situations are often played out in comedy series and appear in anecdotes. However, their typicality does not negate the fact that constant quarrels over household chores are an alarming signal for any marriage.
According to a 2016 Harvard University study, one in four Americans claim that "differences over household problems" were the main reason they decided to file for divorce. Complete Case confirms this statistics. When tired spouses get home from work, none of them wants to take out the trash or wash the dishes. Yet, these things need to be done. If partners fail to divide simple household chores peacefully, there are practically no prospects for developing their relationship.
7. Lack of higher education
Researchers at the National Center for Health Statistics found that nearly 80% of women with college degrees can expect their marriages to last at least 20 years. The same fate awaits only 40% of women with secondary education.
Experts are convinced that these results are inextricably linked to the studies related to financial security, which have shown that women with bachelor's degrees tend to feel more financially secure than those who do not have a university degree. As a result, they experience less stress over money and can put more energy into relationships.
8. A heart rate of more than 100 BPM (when arguing with a partner)
John Gottman is a well-known psychologist who developed a system that allows you to say with 94 percent accuracy whether a certain couple will break up in the future or not.
He analyzed many aspects of relationships, from the partners' behavior patterns in marriage to their emotional and physical state when communicating with each other. In particular, he paid close attention to how the couple resolves conflict situations.
According to his findings, if one spouse (or both) during quarrels is often so overwhelmed by emotions that he or she ceases to control themselves, this significantly reduces the likelihood of a long-term relationship.
When this happens, the heart rate exceeds 100 beats per minute, and the blood pressure rises. Such showdowns with shouting and smashing plates are suitable only for cinematography. In real life, such situations are not at all shrouded in the romantic aura of drama.