We know that humor is a key ingredient in seduction, but what science has recently proven is that humor is also the secret to lasting couples.
Researchers from Singapore Management University were interested in humor between couples. Are couples who have a sense of humor happier than others? Or are people who are happier in relationships more able to see the funny sides in their partner? These are the questions Assistant Professor of Psychology Kenneth Tan and his team asked themselves.
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Until then, most studies had focused on humor as a factor in seduction, but few looked at humor as the key to a lasting marital relationship. For their study published in the journal Psychological sciencesThe researchers interviewed 108 couples, or 216 people, and asked them to rate their romantic relationship daily based on: their perception of their partner’s sense of humor, the fact that they used humor throughout the day, and their level of satisfaction in their relationship. Their level of commitment in their relationship and the commitment they see in their partner. At the end of this seven-day study, Kenneth Tan and his team collected 1,227 daily assessments.
More humor, more satisfied husbands
This study concluded that couples who laughed more, and more often, were generally more satisfied with their relationship. “On days when you are more satisfied and committed to your relationship, you find your romantic partner to have more fun,” says the assistant professor of psychology. Conversely, “on days when you are less satisfied and less committed to your relationship, you find your partner less enjoyable.”
The study also did not reveal statistically significant differences between men and women in the relationship between humor and relationship quality. Both sexes use humor in the same way to maintain interest and strengthen bonds with their other half.
Limitations of the study
This study, although it provides indicators, has its limitations. As described above, it was conducted on Singaporean university students, and thus limited the sample, as no older or married couples appeared.
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