What does it take to have a happy marriage or long-term relationship? Not just for one year or five years, but for an entire lifetime? before writing this article, I took a look at what some experts say. Most of it seems similar to what husband and wife experienced along the way–and completely unlike marriage as Hollywood, romance novels, or celebrity magazines describe it. Here are a few things about long-term relationships that anyone who hopes to have absolutely needs to know;
1. It’s All About Problem-solving
What activity has been scientifically shown to occur most often in happy marriages? it’s joint problem-solving, cited by Florence Kaslow, clinical professor at Duke. She found that 70 percent of highly satisfied couples mentioned this as a factor while only a third of unsatisfied couples did. According to Psychology Today, joint problem-solving shows up in “virtually every” longitudinal study of marriage.
2. People Change But You Can’t Change Them
You’ve probably heard more than once that you can’t change someone you’re in a relationship with. Not only is this completely untrue, but if you stay with someone for several years, it’s impossible to avoid changing that person. But it is true that if you deliberately set out to change, say, a laid-back couch potato into a go-getter, or a smoker into a non-smoker, or someone who piles clothes on the floor into someone who neatly folds them and puts them away, you’re liable to be disappointed. Changes take place very gradually and in unexpected directions, and you certainly can’t plan on them.
3. How You Argue Determines The Quality Of Your Relationship
In fact, as a fascinating experiment showed, it determines the longevity of it as well. Experts disagree as to whether a couple that never has an argument is in a healthy relationship or not.
Most assume that means the couple isn’t dealing with conflicts at all, while some claim that a highly evolved couple can discuss all their conflicts calmly. But the important thing is to remember, even while fighting, you’re in this together and to stay conscious of the big picture.