Relationship tips from the world’s happiest couples
Hug, cuddle, and kiss your partner when they least expect it – loving gestures are one of the secrets to happy long-term relationships, research shows.
Even if you only feel comfortable kissing and touching in private, actions that show you care really do matter, according to The Normal Bar, the largest global survey on what makes relationships work and not work.
Words that show you care are also pretty important – 85 per cent of the world’s happiest couples say ‘I love you’ at least once a week. Many of them profess their love every day, and they never stop saying those three little words as the years pass in their relationship.
Using affectionate nicknames and giving compliments, like telling your partner they are pretty or look great, also go a long way when it comes to a healthy relationship, researcher Pepper Schwartz told Love Matters in an interview.
Feeling comfortable enough with your partner to share what’s on your mind is vital to being happy together. Many couples want the same thing in a relationship, Schwartz explained, but they’re too embarrassed or insecure to tell their partner. That’s true of couples who have been married for years, not just those that are casually dating.
Talking about sex is a perfect example. Just over half of the men in the study thought their partner wasn’t into having sex with them but was only doing it out of obligation. Yet when researchers asked the women whether they ever had sex because they felt they had to, only 37 per cent said they did.
When it comes to what they want their partners to do in bed, many men and women are too afraid to ask.
So what are the things that men and women want in bed but don’t dare to ask? Here’s what the research found:
- More sexual variety
- Sexual sounds and noises
- More involvement and action
- More foreplay
- Romantic talk
- Less predictability in bed
Do something new
All couples are happier doing new things together, the survey revealed. That could mean finding surprising ways to work romance into your relationship, like taking a few days away together, something which almost 90 per cent of happy couples find time to do.
Trying new things out also means sexually. Just under 95 per cent of men and 78 per cent of women want to experiment in bed – couples around the world, no matter how happy they are, want to spice things up with kinkier, edgier sex, according to the findings.
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