A new study by researchers from Ohio State University, published in the Journal of Family Psychology, found that women’s emotional health improves when they live with their partners – whether they’re married or not. Looking at data collected from singles in the 2000s, the researchers discovered that women would see a “similar decline in emotional distress” when they either moved in with their partner or got married right away. For men, that drop in emotional distress was only seen when they got married, not when they moved in with their partner for the first time. According to Claire Kamp Dush, co-author of the study, this could be attributed to the fact that living with your partner before marriage does not carry the stigma it did in previous generations. “At one time marriage may have been seen as the only way for young couples to get the social support and companionship that is important for emotional health,” Kamp Dush said in a statement. “It’s not that way anymore. We’re finding that marriage isn’t necessary to reap the benefits of living together, at least when it comes to emotional health.” The results for young adults change, however, after they moved on from a first serious relationship: as they moved in or got married to a second partner, the boost in emotional health was similar for both genders. A possible explanation for this, according to Kamp Dush, is that these young adults “may be selecting better partners for themselves the second time around, which is why they are seeing a drop in emotional distress.”
Read the full story at Quartz.
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