A large, multi-year, federally-funded study of South Florida couples shows significant improvements in relationship consensus, cohesion, satisfaction, and affection a year after completing nine hours of skills training.
President Obama spoke out this week on the challenges couples face balancing work and family life. While workers may not always be able to influence company policies, research shows that improving communication skills, emotional understanding, and the ability to work through typical marital conflicts helps couples boost the bottom line at home and for their employers.
As the annual SmartMarriages conference begins in Orlando, a Psychology Today article takes aim at proponents of marriage education for focusing on selling classes instead of research. Ensuring marriage education programs have a proven track record of positive impact is vital to gaining trust and broader acceptance from the public and professionals.
For more than 150 years, policy-makers and researchers have known there’s a direct connection between marriage and health. Today, studies are increasingly identifying the specific aspects of marriage that promote wellness, healing, and increased life expectancy. This information provides a road map to strengthen couples, families and communities with significant medical, social, and economic benefits.
A study by the nonprofit PAIRS Foundation found statistically significant, lasting improvements in marital satisfaction for men and women who completed a nine-hour relationship skills training program. The organization says that expanding relationship skills training in communities nationwide offers the potential for creating tens of thousands of jobs while reducing billions in taxpayer expenses.
As marriages threatened by fights over money, careers and in-laws, more couples benefit from skills training
Nearly two thirds of couples in committed relationships regularly argue with each other and more than a quarter quarrel more often than not. Researchers followed-up with hundreds of couples six months after they completed a nine-hour PAIRS Essentials class designed to improve communication, emotional understanding, and conflict resolution. Results of the follow-up study indicated a sharp decline in the frequency of disagreements with significant benefits for improving marriages, strengthening families and helping children succeed.
Marriage education helps couples with children strengthen their marriages and families. The percentage who never consider divorce doubled after just nine hours of relationship skills training.