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Research being conducted by John Gottman (2010) and his colleagues involves inviting married couples into a pleasant setting, in which they revisit the disagreement that caused their last argument.
Although the participants are aware that they are being videotaped, they soon become so absorbed in their own interaction that they forget they are being recorded.
However, this degradation can be softened (according to their 120 heterosexual couple Chicago sample) by undertaking a reappraisal writing task every four months. The study reports three distinct findings showing how unhealthy habits are promoted in long-term intimate relationships: through the direct bad influence of one partner, through synchronicity of health habits, and through the notion of personal responsibility.
Two characteristics that children reported as least important included wealth and religion.
In the years following Monroe's study, very few similar studies were done.
In a recent study on the impact of Hurricane Katrina on marital and partner relationships, researchers found that while many reported negative changes in their relationships, a number also experienced positive changes.
More specifically, the advent of Hurricane Katrina led to a number of environmental stressors (for example, unemployment, prolonged separation) that negatively impacted intimate relationships for many couples, though other couples' relationships grew stronger as a result of new employment opportunities, a greater sense of perspective, and higher levels of communication and support.
In relationships based on pleasure, people are attracted to the feelings of pleasantness when the parties engage.