Divorce rates in the US are tipping the scales back in favor of the modern lovebirds. Social scientists have waves of research showing a rapidly decreasing trend in divorce rates, as compared to the 50% divorce rate scare of the 1970-1980’s. This is great news for young lovers once reluctant to make such a risky gamble, as they head down the isle to their new promising futures.
So what seems to be the secret? What traits are these youngions bringing with them that tip the scales so drastically? Here, we gathered a concise list of the fundamental characteristics in today’s Forever Baes..
Correlate Goals and Build New Ones
One factor in the success of new couples is that they are waiting longer to enter into marriage. A 2015 U.S. census showed that the average age of marriage for women was 27.1 and 29.2 for men at the time the study was conducted. Compared to the average of 20.3 to 22.8 (women and men) in 1960, this is pretty substantial considering the brain doesn’t fully develop until the age of 25. These added years of reflection allow someone to decide their individual goals as well as relational.
At this point, they have completed their education and are either submerged in or just starting out their career paths/lifestyles. This meaning that when they marry someone, that person is at a similar point (maybe even in the same path) and it is more clearly able to differentiate whether their goals match long term or will combat each other in the future.
Upon establishing this, the couple is able to build a relationship upon their correlating individual goals and develop a long term path together. This strengthens the relationship as you both encourage and help build each other up.
The Big Piece of Pie
This is a kind of exercise or mindset that may seem a bit odd, however, the idea behind it is key to long term blissful cohabitation.
It’s like this, say you and your partner have a bit of a delicious homemade pie (or cake, or whatever your favorite dessert is!) left over to finish off a peaceful evening together. You go into the kitchen and cut it in halves, then naturally notice that one of the slices looks a tad more appealing than the other. Maybe it has more whipped cream or cherries? Regardless, you instinctively want the better piece for yourself. Call it your Survival instinct looking out for numero uno. But, instead of acting on this natural desire, you remember the love you have for the person in the next room and their value to you. Suddenly, you feel a conflict of emotions. Some for the Pie and others for your loved one.
Though seemingly meaningless, how you choose may reflect on your priorities, interests and overall, how you will go about solving relational issues in the future. Basically, in valuing your companion as equal or higher than yourself, you will set yourself up to handle future circumstances more emotionally attune to your partners needs and more easily empathize with their point of view.
Many of us come from broken or dysfunctional homes and can relate to the hesitant feelings towards vulnerability. It can be scary to take off your social mask and present yourself emotionally and mentally naked to someone (not to mention physically naked 0.0). Though extremely intimidating, this act is Crucial in developing a concrete foundation of acceptance in a relationship.
The goal in a long term romantic partnership is to truly get to know one another, accept each other and, from there, create something beautiful and special between the both of you. It is similar to when two people go through a traumatic or life changing experience together and the strong bond that develops during that time. Those raw feelings of dependency and clarity of commitment to each other are powerful and set a strong foundation for trust, respect and confidence in the relationship.
Some red flags to note in gauging your own transparency are; do you feel defensive/nervous when your partner grabs your phone? Are there areas in your past or space that are off limits to your partner? Does silence between you and your partner make you feel anxious? If so, take some time to self evaluate the causes of these feelings and decide whether or not this person can be trusted with your true naked self.
What Happens in a Relationship, Stays
Speaking of trust and respect, wise partners in relationships understand that the bond between them is sacred and to be treated as such. Meaning that the deep personal experiences or discrepancies that happen within the relationship should not be the juicy gossip that travels its way down the grapevine. Even outside advice should be sought after extremely sparingly, because more often you know the answer, you just seek justification to not do it. Your partner should be your best friend and closest confidant. If you are experiencing an issue, level with one another and talk it out.
Never go to sleep upset at one another if you can help it. Always try to reach an understanding as soon as possible before sour feelings take root and grow into much deeper seeded issues.
One lesser known way to level with one another and enhance attraction is through eye contact. Researchers have found that men who looked at women for 8.2 seconds were more likely to have intimate feelings than men who only looked at a woman for 4.5 seconds. The simple exercise of sitting/standing in front of your loved one and looking into their eyes for 60 seconds can surface deep attraction and imprint intimate memories of that person. A mutual feeling of intimacy, attentiveness and empathy will create a safe environment for discussion and exploration.
Serve 100% without Expecting a Return
Picture your needs and your partners needs as two empty buckets. In a healthy whole relationship, these buckets are to be filled by the person by serving and providing for each other. This is to say, that each person is to understand the others physical and emotional needs and ensure that they are met. A strong relationship is one that is filled with acts of kindness, selflessness and understanding.
Now, every once in awhile, someone may fall off the wagon and not be able to invest as much energy in the other person. This is a chance for the other partner’s commitment shine through and help the fallen get back up on their feet. It is important, however, to note that the crisis one partner is experiencing is not a permanent position. Both buckets will need to be filled again to keep the relationship sailing, so it is crucial to handle what life hands you, accept your partner’s support and work to recover. Patience is a must, and remember, you’re in this together.
Physical Contact (PDA!!!)
We’ve all gagged at that gross couple swapping spit on the subway to work, But what if I told you that they have unlocked to secret to relational satisfaction? Maybe all that face sucking and hand holding isn’t just foolishness, but a sign of the breaching of a much deeper level. I am mostly referring to couples 20 and older, ‘cause we all know those crazy kids can’t keep their hands off one another.
In a study by Ohio State University, researchers found that PDA and intimacy in general, is strongly linked to relationship satisfaction and the feeling of closeness to your significant other. Couples who freely express their feelings for each other tend to be more comfortable with each other and on a higher level in the climb towards a synergetic partnership. This is to say that they have surpassed the preliminary stages of navigating each others quirks and developed a strong bond with them.
PDA is a hint at the pair’s priority to adore the other over maintaining the social norms. So what may seem like youthful folly to some, may be secret that’s tipping the scale of relational success back into favor of the newer generations.
Let us know what you think! share your own experiences in the comments below.