[via Thinkstock Photos]
If you follow @uberfacts on Twitter, you’ve probably seen this tweet pop up on a couple occasions:
Couples who cuddle often are 8 times more likely to be happy in their relationship than those who don’t.
— UberFacts (@UberFacts) July 1, 2013
Who knew that couples who partake in one of the most basic forms of showing affection would be happier? Well, really, it seems pretty common sense.
One statement that doesn’t necessarily evoke the same “Duh!” response, but still kinda makes sense is this: “If you smoke marijuana and your partner does too, we have good news for you: you’re likely in the least abusive kind of relationship.”
That quote comes from a Huffington Post article which draws its data from a study recently released from the University of Buffalo.
The study involved 634 couples, and attempted to clear up some inconsistent findings about domestic violence among pot smoking couples. The previous findings were based on cross-sectional data (based on a single point in time). This study looked at couples over the first 9 years of marriage, and found this:
- More frequent marijuana use by husbands and wives (two-to-three times per month or more often) predicted less frequent intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration by husbands.
- Husbands’ marijuana use also predicted less frequent IPV perpetration by wives.
- Couples in which both spouses used marijuana frequently reported the least frequent IPV perpetration.
- The relationship between marijuana use and reduced partner violence was most evident among women who did not have histories of prior antisocial behavior.
Lead investigator Kenneth Leonard, PhD (director of the UB Research Institute on Addictions) had this to say in summary:
“These findings suggest that marijuana use is predictive of lower levels of aggression towards one’s partner in the following year.” Leonard says. “As in other survey studies of marijuana and partner violence, our study examines patterns of marijuana use and the occurrence of violence within a year period. It does not examine whether using marijuana on a given day reduces the likelihood of violence at that time.
“It is possible, for example, that — similar to a drinking partnership — couples who use marijuana together may share similar values and social circles, and it is this similarity that is responsible for reducing the likelihood of conflict.”
This blog’s title might be a little misleading, however. The study found that smoking pot is not some magical thing you can do to keep your marriage together if all else is failing.
“While couples who reported marijuana use also reported less marital aggression, previous research with these couples found that couples who smoked marijuana were not less likely to divorce. In addition, the current study does not address the potential impact of parental marijuana use on children in the family and other problems associated with daily marijuana use. The most frequent use reported by couples in this particular study was once a week.”
So that’s an important part of the study: The folks who took part were not particularly heavy marijuana users (or at least not during the time of the study). What this tells me is that couples who might twist one up on the weekend have the best chance at a relationship without violence. One can only assume that this would be the case for daily users of the drug too, when you consider that it’s often difficult to even get off the couch while under the influence, let alone raise a fist or something like that.
However, the impact of potential marijuana use on children on the family is something that might be worth looking at. Don’t forget, it was just last month that a dad down in Wichita, Kansas forgot his 10-month-old foster daughter in his car for two hours while he was busy getting high. Of course, when he came back, it was too late.
So I guess when it comes to keeping your marriage civil, smoke ’em if you got ’em! Just make sure you don’t forget about the kids.