I must confess: this one surprised me. But, after reading the details, I wonder … After all, Brad Wilcox is one of my favorite researchers and writers. See what you think …
A surprising new study has reported that the idea of marrying your ‘soul mate’ may be a nice idea in theory and in chick flicks, but may not be such a good idea in real life. Here are the details from Cosmopolitan:
“Couples who believe in soul mates have such high expectations of marriage, and when those aren’t met they’re more likely to enter into conflict or even end up getting divorced,” explains Bradford Wilcox, PhD, Director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia.
He added that these types of couples expect an intense positive emotional connection all the time, which sets them up for disappointment.
On the other hand, couples with a slightly less fantasy-ish outlook aren’t as likely to fight and ultimately throw in the towel.
That may sound like bad news for the two-thirds of Americans who, it is reported, like the idea of soul mates. But if that’s you, there’s no need to change your beliefs. Instead, you can improve your chances of a happy relationship with these tips from Wilcox:
- Try to be as realistic as possible when it comes to the day-to-day stuff. It’s fine to believe that you’re with The One and Only, but don’t let that turn into bogus expectations (i.e., you must feel 100 percent happy with him All. The. Time.). Keeping things real will decrease the odds that you end up disappointed.
- Don’t drop your friends and family for your soul mate. “Those who have support from people besides the spouse are better at negotiating the challenges of married life and being successful in the relationship,” says Wilcox.
- Be willing to make sacrifices. Basically you shouldn’t expect everything to go smoothly without any effort on your part. He may be your soul mate, but that doesn’t mean the relationship won’t take work.