Do we really know what our partners like or want?


Seems like as we age, we get worse at predicting it:

To test the influence of relationship length on ability to predict a partner’s preferences, 58 younger (M = 24.1 years) and 20 older (M = 68.7 years) couples made predictions in three domains that varied in daily importance. While prediction accuracy was generally better than chance, longer relationship length correlated with lower prediction accuracy and greater overconfidence. The difference in accuracy between older and younger couples increased for strong preferences and when controlling for preference reliability over time. Independent of relationship length, prediction accuracy was higher for important domains, for strong, reliable, and stereotypical preferences, and when couples were more similar.

Source: “Older but not wiser—Predicting a partner’s preferences gets worse with age” from Journal of Consumer Psychology

Best book I’ve ever read about the subject of marriage is by Stephanie Coontz, “Marriage, a History.”

I also recommend Po Bronson’s book, Why Do I Love These People?

And if you’re curious whether you’re headed for a divorce, ask Visa.

Related posts:

Things you didn’t know about marriage and relationships

Should a man be happier than his wife?

What predicts cheating in a relationship?

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