Happily married couples enjoy better mental health status, according to researchers. They fall sick less often, have fewer instances of depression and anxiety, and suffer less from loneliness and feelings of solitude. A recent study in Sweden shows that mentally healthy married couples are less likely to get pneumonia, undergo surgeries, develop cancer or have heart attacks. It makes sense that the joy that is part of being part of a happy couple translates to mental and physical well-being.
What are some of the benefits to a marriage in which affects partners in possessing good mental health?
Security. Mentally healthy people provide each other with a sense of security. They don’t have to wonder if the person they are coming home to will be “up” or “down” or worry about leaving the children in their care. They are free from the worry that their partner is secretly unhappy or hiding some big secret. They don’t have the situation where one person plays the role of the parent, and the other one of a child. It is truly a marriage of healthy equals.
Mutual support. With two mentally healthy people, there is a built-in support system. Each is invested in helping the other reach their goals, whether they are personal or professional. Need someone to listen to a business pitch you’ll be presenting tomorrow? Your partner is there. Looking for a running partner? Your spouse, may be eager to join you. Happy, stable people do not mind when their partners seek to improve themselves and are happy to be part of their transformations. There is no jealousy or sense of competition.
Witnessing life’s events together. Mentally healthy people embrace their roles as witnesses to each other’s lives. They are there for each other as they go through the inevitable life stages with all the joy and challenges these stages can bring. They accompany each other to life celebrations as well as doctors’ appointments and hospital procedures. What a gift it is to know that “in sickness and in health” is not an idle phrase.
Goal-setting and accomplishing. Mentally-sound couples have a higher chance of accomplishing a goal together, as they are excellent at collaborating. They enjoy shared activities because they know that doing things together promotes a stronger relationship.
Eating together. Mentally-healthy couples love to come together at mealtimes, as they provide an opportunity to share both food and conversation. Additionally, they enjoy grocery shopping together, and deciding what the meal plan will look like. This generally leads to healthier home menus.
Physical health mindfulness. These couples seek to maintain and sustain good physical health, integrating new knowledge about wellness and urging each other in health-related activities.
Encouragement and Praise vs. Criticism and Nagging. Happy couples use encouragement and praise as communication tools rather than criticism and nagging their partner to do something.
Respect and Fairness. Both partners share the workload at home and there are no gender roles. Both partners respect the work each contributes to keep the home happy and balanced. They remember to express thanks and gratitude to each other.
There’s an understanding of each other’s love language. Mentally sound couples understand where the other person is coming from. They understand how each expresses love. They do not seek to teach the other the “best” way to love. Rather, they learn and appreciate each other’s unique style. Whether it is physical touch, verbal affirmations, gifts, notes, surprises or just doing the dishes when it isn’t “their turn”, there is an understanding of each other’s manner of demonstrating their feelings.
Better sex, even into the golden years. Happy, mentally stable couples have better sex. These couples use good communication skills which help them keep their intimate lives active and evolving. They do not use sex as a weapon, withholding it to punish or hurt a partner. (They talk things out so issues don’t carry over to the bedroom.)