Alan R. Stafford
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the saying,” opposites attract”. Many people believe that finding
a mate who is your opposite is like touching two electrical wires
together. Sparks fly and things really heat up. The very idea is
exciting: you zig, he zags. He is everything you are not, and vice
versa. So, is it true that to find your life partner you should
“find your opposite”? Unfortunately, the answer is “no”.
is that opposites do attract, but they rarely stay together. If
they do manage to stay married, the relationship is usually fitful
and argumentative. Dating someone who is very different - someone
who may have characteristics you wish you had - may be very exciting.
But this excitement won’t last long, and it won’t be a good foundation
for a happy marriage. Ditch diggers don’t do well with doctors,
social types aren’t happy with homebodies, and spendthrifts are
always at odds with pinchpennies.
study has shown that happily married couples have far more in common
than they have differences. If you want the best chance of having
a long and happy marriage, marry someone who’s similar to you.
opposites tend not to stay together, however, it doesn't mean you
have to marry your clone to be happy. Your soul mate is not someone
who is identical to you. In fact, if the two of you think and act
the same in every way, you’ll probably soon get bored with each
other. Here’s the secret to a long and happy marriage: marry someone
who is complementary. That is, someone who has characteristics you
don't have but admire. That person is different enough to be interesting
but is not truly your opposite. If you marry such person, you’ll
avoid a lot of conflicts and marriage problems that may otherwise
ruin your relationship.
couples were surveyed for degree of similarity/dissimilarity here
were the results:
people tend to mate with people who are generally considered the
same degree of attractiveness. Beauty rarely marries ugly. A large
difference in attractiveness may cause serious problems later in
couples generally match up well in educational levels. However,
PhD’s have marriage problems, too. What really seems to matter is
not educational levels (grade levels or degrees) but intelligence.
People tend to marry and stay married to people with similar IQ's.
there are classes in America. Upper class people rarely marry people
from the other side of the tracks. Country club types marry country
club types. Ivy Leaguers marry Ivy Leaguers. The prince marrying
the peasant girl is truly a fairy tale.
often people from different religions marry, but the couples who
stay together and are happy together generally agree about most
spiritual matters. So, here’s another compatibility tip: discussing
religion and spiritual beliefs before the wedding will save you
a lot of marriage problems.
rich marries poor, the marriage is over either when the money runs
out, or when the wealthy partner does.
to a very high degree, happy couples are in agreement about whether
to have children, or how many to have.
So, happy couples
in successful long-term relationships are not carbon copies of each
other. Neither are they clones or mirror images. It’s the differences
between partners that make the marriage interesting. But, when it
comes to the major issues in a relationship, happily married couples
are generally at a high level of agreement.
Take a look
at your own relationship. Before you make any major commitments,
be sure that you and your partner are in agreement over the big
things. Then, viva la difference!
©2006 Relationship Success Experts
Stafford is a speaker, writer, class leader, and personal coach
on topics important to Singles and Couples. As a relationship coach
he helps men and women of all ages find the love of their lives
and lives that they love. If you're tired of being alone, or worry
you're with the wrong person, call or email Alan for a no cost introductory
coaching call to see how personal coaching can benefit you.
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