Survey Relationships Reach Peak Stress Level At 3 Years

A survey of 2,000 British adults in relationships indicates that relationship stress peaks at the 36-month mark for most couples. Surveyors report that 3 years into a relationship is when minor irritations stop becoming endearing and start becoming a problem in relationships. Married couples who fail to address these irritations with their partner may become alienated or seek divorce.

One indication from the survey is that romance falters in the face of busy schedules. Reuters reports that 55 percent of busy people in longer-term relationships say that they schedule their romantic time.

Compliments also fall from a high of 3 compliments per week during a new relationship to 1 compliment per week at the 3 year mark. The downward trend reportedly continues for relationships that are longer than 5 years, with 30 percent of those individuals claiming never to receive compliments from their partners.

The top ten “passion killers” according to the survey are:

  1. Weight gain or lack of exercise
  2. Money or stinginess
  3. Anti-social working hours
  4. Hygiene issues
  5. In-laws or extended family issues
  6. Lack of romance
  7. Alcohol (drinking too much)
  8. Snoring or anti-social bedtime habits
  9. Lapsed fashion
  10. Bathroom habits, such as stray nail clippings

Couples who address these “passion killers” with their spouse may be able to avoid the turmoil of a costly divorce. Those who cannot repair their marriages should seek the advice of an experienced divorce attorney to help guide them through the divorce process whether that process is through alternative dispute resolution or litigation.

The survey was commissioned by Warner Brothers to promote the release of its upcoming film “Hall Pass” in which a wife gives her husband permission to have an extramarital affair.

Source: Reuters, “The 7-year itch is now the 3-year glitch,” 3/9/11