Say you or I were having problems with our relationship and we headed off, with our respective partners, to a relationship counselor. How would they advise us to improve our marital satisfaction?
Research suggests that people who are satisfied with their relationships tend to behave more positively towards each other. They expect good things from their partner, avoid blaming each other for mistakes, approach problem-solving positively and forgive each other for those little slip-ups.
Quite naturally, then, a counselor would encourage us to try and cultivate these same positive processes in our relationships.
But what if, for some couples, these positive processes actually make the situation worse, not better, leading to lower marital satisfaction?
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