Why you should care
Because love is mysterious, and science can help you solve a little of that mystery.
Starting a relationship can seem easy — all the smiling, sex and longing to be together. But maintaining a relationship? That’s an entirely different ballgame, one that seems to present as many complex rules as the NFL. Never, ever do this. Definitely do more of that. To help you master the relationship playbook — or at least equip you with five winning strategies — OZY offers these findings that we hope will help you and your honey fumble less and score a whole lot more.
From the engagement ring to a blowout bridal party and custom-designed website chronicling the happy couple’s road to the altar, it should come as no surprise that the average price of a wedding has hit an all-time high of $30,000 (honeymoon not included). But what might surprise you is to learn that the more the bride and groom shell out for their big day, the shorter the marriage. In fact, say the experts, for the best odds of long-term marital success, you should look to spend less than $1,000. Read more here.
Say you’re in a relationship and your partner cheats on you. Horrible, right? But it happens and the important thing is to forgive and move on, especially when he or she promises it’ll never happen again. Only it most likely will, according to a study of nearly 500 singles indicating that a partner who’s unfaithful once is 3.7 times more likely to cheat again. So while everyone makes mistakes and deserves to prove they can change, when it comes to infidelity, past behavior is a clear predictor of future cheatin’ ways. Read more here.
Sexual satisfaction: It’s what we’re all looking for, but did you know that it depends in large part on what you do after doing the deed? Two new studies concluded that the “duration of post-sex affection was associated with higher sexual satisfaction and, in turn, higher relationship satisfaction.” So don’t skip the candlelight and soft music, but if you really want to leave a lasting impression on your lover, spend some time cuddling in the afterglow. When it comes to sex, it seems the cooldown can make for hotter times ahead. Read more here.
Porn gets a bad rap. For many good reasons, except this one: Consuming porn doesn’t turn men into lousy lovers. Rather, according to The Journal of Sexual Medicine, men who watched more hours of porn were better able to get it up. Researchers found that rather than desensitizing men to sex or contributing to erectile dysfunction, watching porn — occasionally or for hours a day — made it easier for men to get and maintain an erection. “Quite amazing, actually,” said one of the study’s co-authors. Indeed. Read more here.
Ask someone what they think of social media, and you’ll hear that it’s the best thing since sliced bread, or the end of civilization as we know it. But put the same question to relationship experts and the response will be unanimous: Facebook and its ilk are toxic to couples looking for long-term happiness. And it’s hard to argue with this finding: 16 percent of non–social media users have thought of leaving their spouse at some point. Social media users? Twice that number. So which is more important: staying on Facebook or saving your marriage? Up to you, but we recommend not going online to find out. Read more here.