Having kids can bring in greater strains in romantic relationships than illness of partners, revealed a new study.
The study analyzed the relationship quality of 721 couples in Switzerland over a period of thirteen years. Researcher Manuela Schicka from the University of Geneva in Switzerland said, "Transition to parenthood is associated with a higher degree of closure of the couple, as well as greater differentiation of functional roles."
‘Transition to parenthood is associated with a higher degree of differentiation of functional roles, and this can bring in greater strain in romantic relationships than illness of partners.’
Schicka further added, "Women often abandon or substantially reduce their participation in the labor market once they become a mother, because of lack of institutionalized child care facilities. This also generates a great deal of frustration. On the other hand, illness and accidents are seen as linked to bad luck and not personal responsibility. There is therefore less grief and bitter thoughts between partners when the latter occur."
The study also noted that transition to retirement succeeds in reuniting couples at an age that is generally not perceived as the most romantic one.
The research findings suggest that while the various styles of conjugal interactions generally remain stable along the life course, some critical life events and transitions weigh much more on relationship quality than others, sometimes in unexpected ways.