"Happy wife. Happy life." This popular saying doesn't just sound good, it's the secret to a successful marriage. A long-term study shows that men who allow their wives to influence them are less likely to get a divorce and have overall happier marriages.
Influence, in this case, doesn't mean just abiding by whatever she wants from you, but listening to her concerns, acknowledging them, and taking them into account. That's called emotional intelligence.
According to Business Insider, the study featured 130 newlywed couples by Dr. John Gottman. And an emotionally intelligent and open partner isn't just important in heterosexual marriages. Research shows that same-sex relationships benefit as well (and they seem to be better at achieving it).
So how do you know if you have an emotionally intelligent partner? Gottman says that these are signs that a man is resisting his wife's influence: criticism, defensiveness, contempt and stonewalling.
This isn't a surefire way to avoid conflict. Marriage is hard work. Women can get angry and men shouldn't be insulted. However, women often take their husband's opinions and feelings into account and that needs to be reciprocated. Dr. Gottman's research says there's an 81% chance that a marriage will unravel if a man won't share the power.
Hmmm... so is it safe to say that patriarchy is what's ripping marriages apart?