Another quick and easy way to increase relationship satisfaction:

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Eric Barker  -  
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Might want to try reminiscing about times you laughed together:

Despite independent evidence that reminiscing about positive events has positive emotional benefits, and that laughter plays a role in seemingly successful relationships, there is a lack of empirical research examining how reminiscing about laughter might influence relationship well being. Specifically, the current study assessed whether reminiscing about shared laughter would increase relationship satisfaction among romantic couples. Fifty-two couples were randomly assigned to one of four reminiscing conditions and completed pre- and post-manipulation assessments of relationship satisfaction. As predicted, couples who reminisced about events involving shared laugher reported higher relationship satisfaction at the post-manipulation satisfaction assessment as compared to couples in the three control conditions. The effect was not attributed to positive mood induction as mood scores across groups were similar. Results show preliminary support for the notion that reminiscing about laughter may have a more potent influence on relationship well being than reminiscing about other positive events.

Source: “The Effect of Reminiscing about Laughter on Relationship Satisfaction” from Motivation and Emotion, Volume 31, Number 1, 25-34

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Can I tell whether you’ll get divorced by how you describe your marriage?

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Eric Barker  -  
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A longitudinal study with 95 newlywed couples examined the power of the Oral History Interview to predict stable marital relationships and divorce. A principal-components analysis of the interview with the couples (Time 1) identified a latent variable, perceived marital bond, that was significant in predicting which couples would remain married or divorce within the first 5 years of their marriage. A discriminant function analysis of the newlywed oral history data predicted, with 87.4% accuracy, those couples whose marriages remained intact or broke up at the Time 2 data collection point. The oral history data predicted with 81% accuracy those couples who remained married or divorced at the Time 3 data collection point. This study offers support for causal linkages between perceptual biases and selective attention on the path of marriage.

Source: “Predicting Marital Stability and Divorce in Newlywed Couples” from Journal of Family Psychology, March 2000 Vol. 14, No. 1, 42-58

From the study:

Does the manner in which spouses remember the past and their cognitive schema about their partner and the marriage help in predicting the future stability of the marriage? Our laboratory has produced some evidence that it does. Buehlman, Gottman, and Katz (1992) used the Oral History Interview ( Krokoff, 1984a ) to measure spouses’ global perceptions about their marriage and each other (in this study, we refer to global marital perceptions as the perceived marital bond). In a joint interview, spouses were asked to tell the story of their relationship from the time they met until the present day. The couples were also asked about the good and hard times in their marriage, as well as their philosophy about marriage. The interview was coded for how the couple told their story rather than based on the content of what they said. The interview measured the couple’s perceptions by focusing on the positive or negative qualities of the relationship that predominated in the telling of the story. The coding system is consistent with Fincham et al.’s (1990) thesis that individuals are most likely to retrieve units of memory that are congruent with their present perceptions about the marriage. Using the Oral History Interview, Buehlman and her associates (1992) were able to predict, with 94% accuracy, those couples who would divorce or stay married in a longitudinal study of 56 married couples. The couple’s perceived marital bond was associated with marital stability. Couples in which spouses were more critical of their partners, disillusioned about the marriage, and believed the challenges of the marriage were outside their personal control were more likely to have divorced by the 3-year follow-up. Hence, how a couple told the story of their relationship could predict their likelihood of marital stability or divorce.

This study is by John Gottman. Malcolm Gladwell featured him in the bestseller “Blink.”

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Here’s How Porn Affects Men And Women’s Relationship Satisfaction

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Eric Barker  -  
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This study assessed how sexual media use by one or both members of a romantic dyad relates to relationship and sexual satisfaction. A total of 217 heterosexual couples completed an Internet survey that assessed sexual media use, relationship and sexual satisfaction, and demographic variables. Results revealed that a higher frequency of men’s sexual media use related to negative satisfaction in men, while a higher frequency of women’s sexual media use related to positive satisfaction in male partners. Reasons for sexual media use differed by gender: Men reported primarily using sexual media for masturbation, while women reported primarily using sexual media as part of lovemaking with their partners. Shared sexual media use was associated with higher relational satisfaction compared to solitary sexual media use.

Source: “Sexual media use and relational satisfaction in heterosexual couples” from Personal Relationships

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Do “Daddies’ Girls” Choose Men Just Like Their Fathers?

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Eric Barker  -  
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Yes.

Via Science Daily:

Women who enjoy good childhood relationships with their fathers are more likely to select partners who resemble their dads research suggests. In contrast, the team of psychologists from Durham University and two Polish institutions revealed that women who have negative or less positive relationships were not attracted to men who looked like their male parents.

Due to be published in the July issue of Evolution and Human Behaviour, the study investigated evidence of parental sexual imprinting, the sexual preference for individuals possessing parental characteristics, in women. The team used facial measurements to give a clear view of how fathers’ facial features relate directly to the features of faces their daughters find attractive.

And:

Author Dr Lynda Boothroyd of Durham University explains: “While previous research has suggested this to be the case, these controlled results show for certain that the quality of a daughter’s relationship with her father has an impact on whom she finds attractive. It shows our human brains don’t simply build prototypes of the ideal face based on those we see around us, rather they build them based on those to whom we have a strongly positive relationship. We can now say that daughters who have very positive childhood relationships with their fathers choose men with similar central facial characteristics to their fathers.”

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