How "couple friends" help your relationship
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Twice as Nice1 of 6
By Shannan Rouss
It's rare that two couples truly click, but when they do, it's cause for celebration. Researchers have found that couples who have more shared friends rather than individual friends tend to be happier and have longer lasting relationships. Read on to discover how finding your Fred & Ethel will enhance your own romance.
Double the Fun2 of 6
Most relationships eventually arrive at that place where you're not quite bored with each other, but you are used to each other—you know each others stories and habits, likes and dislikes. Spending time with another couple is one way to keep things new and interesting, putting the spark back in your own relationship.
Four of a Kind3 of 6
To reap the full benefits of a couple friendship, it helps to get beyond the small talk, according to a 2010 study aptly titled When Harry and Sally met Dick and Jane: Creating closeness between couples. Researchers found that having a "highly disclosing conversation with another couple" ultimately resulted in feeling closer to one's own partner.
Watch & Learn4 of 6
Another benefit of couple friendships? You gain relationship insight simply by observing how another pair interacts—how they work through disagreements or make important decisions. Geoffrey Greif and Kathleen Holtz Deal, co-authors of Two Plus Two: Couples and Their Couple Friendships, found that couple friends often provide examples of what to do and, in some cases, what not to do.
In the Beginning5 of 6
According to Greif and Holtz Deal, couple friendships are important to young couples starting out, as well as to older couples. (Couples in the middle years may be too busy with work and family to invest time in building friendships.) In an interview with Psychology Today, the authors explained that for two people in a new relationship, having couple friends helps "cement their own identity as a couple."
Off Limits6 of 6
Grief and Holtz Deal say that most couple friendships fall are either the fun-sharing kind or the emotion-sharing kind. The fun-sharers tend to take trips together, play tennis, go to concerts, while emotion-sharers value heart-to-hearts. But even among the most open and confiding couples, sex and money remain taboo. To avoid a friendship fallout, it's probably best to steer clear of these topics.