True love lasts for a decade: How some couples keep the spark alive for up to ten years
The soppy but magical nerves at the beginning of a new relationship are known to be the result of a heady mixture of hormones. But the love they lead to – and the intense feeling of being in love – is a longer-lasting, more enduring emotion.
New research has found that even after ten years of marriage, the
level of love can be as intense as it was at the start of the
The study, by New York's Stony Brook University and Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, California, polled 274 married individuals.
Long-time love: New research shows that even after ten years of marriage, the level of love can be as intense as it was at the start of the relationship
Forty per cent of subjects who had been married for over ten years told researchers that they were still 'very intensely in love'.
Another 13.4 per cent said they were 'intensely in love', and 26.2 per cent agreed with the statement that they were 'very in love'.
The feeling was defined by a combination of behaviours such as thinking positively about the partner, being affectionate with one another, sexual intercourse and general life happiness.
The study authors say their results counter the commonly-held belief that feelings of love decline over time.
This is even true for couples married well over a decade, it seems. While the findings showed a drop in very intense feelings of love for those married over 20 years, it rose back up to 40 per cent for couples married over 30 years.
There were some differences between the sexes when it came to behaviour that represented intense feelings of love, however.
For men, thinking about their partner at all times was a key marker of a deep love, but the same was not true of women.
Female participants, in contrast, linked those strong feelings to passion for 'non-relationship factors', the study authors revealed.
This idea of women needing space to be happy is echoed in a book by Huffington Post writer Iris Krasnow, The Secret Lives of Wives: Women Share What It Really Takes To Stay
She writes: 'In order to keep the promise “till
death do us part” without killing someone first, a woman must have work
and hobbies she loves.'