Study Finds Closeness in Relationships which may Surprise many reports Favors By Serendipity
Variations exist depending on closeness
After a survey of over 700 men and women was completed over a two-year period, researchers at the Columbia University research center found that the happiest couples did not necessarily report feeling very close to one another. Rather, those who showed “actual” levels of closeness were close to their “ideal” levels they believed to be part of a successful relationship were the couples who were happiest in their relationship. No matter how close one individual is to another, as long as the levels are compatible and within the expectations of the individuals, it tends to work for the best.
The participants were asked questions regarding their current and ideal relationship closeness, satisfactions, commitment, break-up thoughts, and general symptoms of depression. Over 50% of the participants reported feeling too much distance from themselves and their partner. Over a third of the participants were content with the level of closeness in their relationships, while 5% felt their relationship was a bit too close.
Regardless of how emotionally close participants said they truly were to their partners, poorer relationship quality, as well as symptoms of depression, were correlated along with “closeness discrepancy”, or in other words, the gap between actual and perceived ideal levels dictated the amount of depression and insecurity surrounding the relationship.
“It’s best not to make too many assumptions about what constitutes a healthy relationship,” said study author Dr. David Frost in a press release. “Rather, we need to hear from people about how close they are in their relationships and how that compares to how close they’d ideally like to be.”
Couples who enjoy closeness will be glad to know that previous research has shown the importance of cuddling, talking and sex in relationships.
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