When things are going bad in a relationship, is it men or women that are more affected in general? The answer might surprise you. A Wake Forest University study found men were more affected by relationship turmoil than women. However, once things were ended and a breakup did occur, women took that part harder.
The researchers studied about 1,000 people ages 18-23 who were not married, focusing on their relationships and the connection to their mental health. It was a surprising result to the researchers, who said that most people would expect women to be more hurt by such troubles, according to common wisdom.
Interestingly, men’s mental health also benefited more than women’s when things were going well in relationships. This adds to the concept that behind every great man is a great woman. While many people might think women generally become more emotionally invested in relationships, it is possible that men have fewer emotional outlets in other friendships and relationships, so their emotional energy is focused on their relationships and this has a greater effect on them.
It is always hard to predict how men and women will act and every specific situation is obviously unique, but this is an interesting idea nonetheless. While it was shown that there are negative effects on both sexes from relationship problems, it was also demonstrated that there are positive mental health effects when things go well. This is an added incentive to put the work in and have things go well in relationships, because both people end up better off for it.