“That Decision Wasn’t Made There”

When it comes to commitment, timing may not be everything but it's a lot of the things. This insight from a sports commentator of Super Bowl XII is not just about football.

Young and Cueless: Thinking about the Big Rise in Anxiety

Anxiety and depression have increased sharply for teens and young adults. Why? Does cuelessness about relationships play a role?

Do Cheaters Repeat?

People expect their partner to be faithful, married or not. But what are the odds that once a cheater, always a cheater? A new study gives an answer.

3 Signs of True Commitment in a Relationship

When searching for lasting love, it’s too easy to put hope in false signs of commitment. By thinking clearly about good signals of commitment, you can improve your odds.

Good Times Together and Marital Happiness

Quit faking it. Making fun happen in your marriage means finding things you both enjoy doing — together. You don't need to do everything together, but find something that works.

Broken Hearts and Deal Breakers: Reasons Why People Divorce

People who have divorced give a variety of reasons why, and mostly believe their ex should have done more.

Aggression in Twentysomethings’ Relationships

Why is aggression more common in relationships earlier in life and some types of relationships, such as cohabitation?

Capture the Everyday Splendor of Family Life

The photos and videos you most want in the future may not be what you are capturing now. May the force be with you to capture and keep a bit of the best stuff.

What Happens When Partners Aren't Equally Committed

Many relationships have one partner who is way more committed than the other. It doesn’t have to be this way.

What You Need to Know for Sure Before Moving in Together

Most people believe cohabiting is a great test of compatibility, but it's probably not.

When Will You Meet "The One"?

There are more ways than ever to find a mate, and higher expectations than ever for what we seek and think we need. For most people, this is a recipe for misery.

The Special Misery of Searching for Your Soul Mate

You can get your coffee, and just about anything else, exactly how you want it, but if you searching for perfection in a mate, you might have a whole lot of searching to do.

When It Comes to Love, Practice Doesn’t Make Perfect

We describe why having more partners before marriage doesn't lead to success in marriage, including the impact of having a model of the perfect sexual lover in your mind.

What You Need to Know Before You Move In Together

The headline of a recent Washington Post story says that living together is pretty much the same as marriage. Is it true?

Jane Austen Understood Deception and Discovery in Love

Jane Austen knew a secret or two about the problems with ambiguity in romance and love. Her most beloved novels hinge on a female character's misunderstandings on which man is the best for her, until time and circumstances reveal the truth.

Cleanup on Aisle 9 at 35,000 Feet: Children and Happiness

Studies show that having a baby, especially the first baby, can be hard on marital happiness. Of course, the story is much more complex than that. But is the happiness of the couple the only type of happiness that matters most to you in life? Maybe there is something else that matters in life that is more about family happiness than just couple happiness.

4 Essential Keys to a Happy Relationship

Love? Sex? Romance? There are many keys happy, lasting marriages. Here, I argue that at the root of it all are four types of safety that secure lasting love.
Bigstock Photos

Who Will Clip Your Toenails When You Cannot?

They never tell you when you are little that you will one day clip the toenails of your parents or siblings. Such little things must amount to great differences in the quality of life as we age. If you needed one more reason to build and maintain lifelong, loving relationships. . .

8 Ways to Divorce-Proof Your Relationship

Married and want to stay that way? You can do a lot to impact your odds of lasting love. While the odds of divorce remain high, there's nothing that says you have to become a statistic. Check in here for strategies you can use n what you can do to make that difference.

7 Ways to Make Yourself Divorce-Proof

Many singles are interested in marriage but fear divorce. You can do things before marriage to increase your odds of lasting love in marriage.
PREP for Individuals, Inc. 2012 (used by permission)

The Sticky (Dating) Problem: Inertia, Lock-in, and Sunk Cost

Things move fast these days in the world of romance. One of the problems that people often do not see coming is making it harder to break up before really deciding if the person they are seeing is right for them. That happens all the time (now) because it's become so easy to increase constraints that lock you in before developing deeper dedication and knowledge of the fit.

What Is the Divorce Rate, Anyway?

There have long been arguments about the divorce rate—what it really is, where the numbers come from, and what that means for couples today. I go deep into the backstory of the arguments about the risk for divorce and the complexity of what many think should be such an obvious number to report.
Scott Stanley

Lasting Love, like Puppies, Has Both a Front and a Back End

You fall in love with the front end of the puppy, but every puppy has a back end. Therein lies a lesson about commitment in relationships.

Does a Big Wedding Lead to a Better Marriage?

Ever wonder if the size of a wedding matters for marital success? How could it? When it comes to weddings, size has an edge.

Great Article on Psychology Today About Soft Break-Ups

You know you are seeing it. Ambiguity reigns in dating, romantic, and sexual relationships outside of marriage (marriage is not very ambiguous). I've argued before that this is motivated. There are reasons why people like to keep things vague now when it comes to dating and mating. It seems that break-ups are now more ambiguous than ever, and there are reasons for caution.

Rings, Signals, Sex, and Babies

Customs like giving an engagement ring have a lot of history, and the customs are related to deeper themes about biology, babies, and signals of commitment. In this piece, I explore these themes by starting with the question, “should Tyra keep the engagement ring she got from Sam? (After he dumped her?)

Why We Really Give Engagement Rings

There is an interesting history to the use of engagement rings in Western culture, and there are even more interesting ideas about the role of emblems of commitment—like engagement rings. Why, traditionally, does the man give the engagement ring and not vice versa? Should a person give the ring back if the engagement is broken?

The Losses People Fear in Talking About “The Relationship”

At some point in relationships, one of the two partners will be the first to feel a strong need for clarity about where things are headed—if indeed they are headed anywhere. Time is moving on, and it becomes time to get some clarity. There are many reasons, however, why the other partner may avoid this big picture DTR. I describe three of them here.

3 Reasons why People Avoid Talking About "the Relationship"

As romantic relationships have become more ambiguous, the need for having “the talk” or defining one’s relationship has grown. But it is widely recognized that these talks are often avoided. Here, I describe some of the reasons why.
The Hidden Risk of Cohabitation

The Hidden Risk of Cohabitation

For decades, people have believed that living together should increase their odds of doing well in marriage because it provides a good test of the relationship beforehand. But there is almost no research support for this being true, which creates a mystery that I try to explain.