Monday, April 26, 2010

Things happy couples talk about.

So this was one of those dorky articles that pop up on Yahoo without asking for it. I think happy couples probably talk about a nice balance of the topics #1-9. My husband and I are "very strong" on topics #3 and #9. And by "strong" I mean, consumed by. But, seriously, it's all good.

Dating Tips: 9 Things Happy Couples Talk About
What you discuss can reveal the health of your relationship
By dating editor Denise Ngo for YourTango.comUpdated: Apr 14, 2010
Young  dating couple enjoying the outdoors (Corbis)
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As Eleanor Roosevelt said, great minds talk about ideas; small minds talk about people. What do you and your significant other talk about? If you constantly hit the heavy stuff, you're probably happier than if you spend time gossiping about your neighbors or coworkers.
A recent study published in Psychological Science says that people are happier when they spend more time discussing meaningful topics than engaging in small talk. Seventy-nine college students had their conversations recorded and analyzed by researchers, who distinguished between chit-chat about the food or the weather and discussions about philosophy, education, or religion. Subjects who reported the greatest amount of satisfaction spent only 10 percent of their conversation on small talk, while the unhappiest subjects kept 28.3 percent of their talking time in the shallow end.
Among the scores of substantive topics people discuss, we've come up with nine that we believe couples should relish during heart-to-hearts:
1. Embarrassing moments. If you can't share the awkward, "American Pie"-worthy moments that occurred throughout high school with your partner, who can you tell them to? Don't be afraid to broach the subject, if you haven't already. We wouldn't be surprised if their stories are more horrifying than yours.
2. Political viewpoints. How do you feel about the new healthcare bill? You don't have to agree with each other, but you do need to keep an open mind. A good relationship allows both parties to discuss their own philosophies without taking the opposition personally.
3. Fears and insecurities. By fears, we don't mean your phobia of earthworms. We're talking about things that make you wake up with gray hairs. What worries you? What do you want to improve in yourself? What skeletons are in your closet? In being vulnerable, you risk judgment, but more importantly, you chance being understood.
4. Childhood. Ask your partner what he or she was like as a kid. Did she make friends easily? What kind of games did he like to play? Did he have trouble in school? Childhood memories make for fun conversations, but they can also lend insight into how your main squeeze became the person he or she is today.
5. Past relationships. This is a touchy one because no one wants to hear the person they're with spouting sonnets about an ex. There is, of course, a difference between longing for (or being bitter over) the past and simply acknowledging what happened. With enough practice, seasoned, happy couples learn how to address why past relationships ended without inadvertently comparing their current partner to an old flame.
6. Family life. Knowing a person's upbringing and relationship with his or her parents is paramount to understanding his current attitude toward family. If you're even slightly contemplating a future with this person, it might help to ask how well they get along with their parents. Why does she resent her mother? Why is he closer to his sisters than to his brothers? How does she handle family gatherings?
7. Current events. Thanks to the overflow of information, it's nearly impossible to stay up-to-date on everything going on around us. Here's where teamwork comes into play: Ask your partner about his interests, be they economics or regional politics, and see if you can't learn a thing or two. Who knows, maybe you'll help him develop an interest in international affairs or science news.
8. TV and movies. Compared to politics and personal fears, entertainment might seem pretty shallow, but discussions about movies can fall into the "deep" category if you focus on character motivations and plots rather than on, say, the cute leading actors.
9. The future. Talking about the future can be nerve-wracking. While we're not saying you should pressure your partner into talking about plans for marriage and children, we do believe that you should know their dreams, goals, and aspirations. What is he working toward? What drives her to succeed? Where does he see himself in five years? Someone who desires growth and is not afraid of the unknown is surely dynamic enough to deserve you.


jamieschip said...

That's funny you posted this article. I read it and thought the EXACT same thing. We talk about #3 and #9 more than anything else combined. And yes, we are still waiting. I told my husband last night "You realize if you were in any other cone we would be going to DC in June?!" Yep, with a 5.57 and being put on the register in March, he would have been called in all the cones... except POL of course. The frustrating thing is that the people who are getting added lately have high scores, or are adding .17 or .4 for language, which bumps us down, yet another few notches. So now we wait until June to hear about August. ARGH. I take a tiny bit of comfort in knowing there are others (like you guys) out there waiting. We can all stress and worry together.

Shannon said...

I think 3 and 9 are common in all FS households. So many of our choices are more or less out of our hands (where we live, our housing, even our furniture) and the waiting thing, waiting to see if you get in, waiting for the bid list to come out, waiting to see if you got one of your top 3 posts, waiting for the promotions list, the tenuring list. All that waiting makes a person slightly insane I think. I really hope you get some good news soon. It is hard to be waiting to find out what your future is going to be.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I would totally agree with Shannon that #9 rules the day here in the Daring Adventure household!!