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Emotional Intimacy in Marriage

Marital Boredom

So critical to health and happiness generally declines over time and, as new research suggests, often results in a relationship going from bliss to boredom. Marital boredom has been neglected in print, but not in life.

Recent research suggests that marital boredom can be as destructive to relationships as poor conflict resolution skills. What happens to the engagement that couples have during their courtship and early marital years?

The Research Numbers

Some of the research supporting the overlooked importance of boredom:

a. In a recent study 88 couples were asked about their relationship. The answers included nearly 70 varying descriptions of boredom.

A second group of people were then given a list of these descriptions and asked which ones they identified with in their own relationships. A relationship being “dull’ was the most commonly picked answer.

b. Researchers at the University of Michigan and Stony Brook University interviewed 123 couples in their seventh year of marriage and again nine years later.

“These findings show directly, for the first time, that simple boredom with the relationship can shape relationships over the long term,” said Terri Orbuch, a research professor at U-M Institute for Social Research and Institute for Research on Women and Gender.

Getting Past Boredom in Marriage and Relationships

What to do? Is it as simple as changing routines and doing different things together? That can be somewhat helpful, but it does not get at the heart of how people fall in love, and how to keep love alive

I can explain how and why boredom sets in and how to reverse it with a 15-minute structured Emotional Conference-a Boredom Buster that I have used with couples successfully in my practice.

Andrew Faix
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