University Study Finds Men and Women in Committed Relationships of Any Kind Are Healthier

BarrpictureA new study published in the Journal of Family Psychology finds that men and women who live together in a committed relationship, regardless of marital status, are healthier than people who do not cohabit with a committed partner. The data was taken from the Family and Community Health Study that has been in operation since 1995 at the University of Georgia. The lead author of the study is Ashley Barr who was a doctoral student at the University of Georgia when the study was completed and is now an assistant professor of sociology at the University at Buffalo of the State University of New York System.

“There is a great body of research that says romantic relationship quality matters, though much of that research is on married couples,” said Dr. Barr. “We approached the question from a different angle, asking how romantic relationships, in their varied forms, matter for young people in the transition to adulthood.”

Dr. Barr concludes that “if we can build on those strengths — increasing relationship quality, no matter the form the relationship takes — that could potentially be beneficial for health.”

Dr. Barr is a graduate of Pennsylvania State University. She holds a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Georgia.

The study, “A Dyadic Analysis of Relationships and Health: Does Couple-Level Context Condition Partner Effects?” may be accessed here.


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