It’s Now Possible To Predict Whether Couples Will Stay Together Or Split
When you're dating, it's normal to sometimes wish you could predict your relationship's shelf life.
Wouldn't it be easier if you knew whether your romance was going to go the distance? Or if you're better off heeding the warning signs (and saving yourself some heartbreak) and accepting that it was never going to work?
Well believe it or not, a new study is saying it's possible to predict whether couples will stay together or split.
Canadian and German researchers interviewed 2,000 couples on a regular basis over seven years, and discovered that behaviour at the beginning of a relationship can reveal how it will progress.
They found that those who had similar needs but different interests tended to last longer.
For instance, couples who both had a need for closeness, but wanted to continuing pursuing their own interests generally stayed together the longest.
Scientists determined satisfaction by asking couples to what extent they considered their needs met.
"Predictions as to the longevity of a relationship are definitely possible," said study author Dr Christine Finn, from the University of Jena, Germany.
"Right at the outset of a relationship, one can find typical features - that is to say certain prediction variables - that provide information on whether or not the relationship will be long-lasting."
Dr Finn explained there are two main psychological models which describe the course of a relationship.
The first says that couples are generally equally happy at the start of a relationship, and if it ends in a breakup, this can be traced back to problems that develop over the course of it.
The second states that two people start their relationship with differing levels of happiness, which they maintain. However, the negative situation from the outset generally means it's doomed.
"We too can confirm there are differing levels to begin with. In addition, happiness declines in both groups," said Dr Finn.
"However, in those who later separate, this happens significantly faster, meaning that a person who starts off unhappy becomes increasingly unhappy."
But don't go breaking things off in your budding relationship just off the back of this study alone.
The author explains that even if you don't feel you share the same needs as your partner - such as closeness or companionship - these can be cultivated over time.
And if your relationship does end? Well it's still valuable and could provide a positive influence on your next one.
"Couples can also consciously influence and work on their mutual interests and on cultivating closeness as well as independence - no relationship is doomed to fail from the outset," she said.
"Even if couples split up after a time, it can still be a valuable and important phase in their lives, which might have a positive influence on the next relationship."
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