A new study says that having a couple to double date with can improve the happiness of one's own relationship. For the study, researchers from the University of Maryland interviewed 123 couples, 122 individuals in relationships, but who were questioned alone and 58 divorced individuals. On an average, couples had about five "couple friends" they spent time with. When asked how important these friendships were, 40 percent of respondents said they were "very important" and 39 percent said "somewhat important". The researchers found that when couples indicated they agreed on how to divvy up their time between others and themselves, they were more likely to also say they had a happy marriage or relationship. For different people, these "couple" relationships had different meanings. "Couples are looking for different things in their couple friendships - we found there are 'fun-sharing' and 'emotion-sharing' couples," LiveScience quoted Geoffery Greif, the study leader as saying. Many couple friendships seemed to start out as a one-partner friendship that blossomed into a foursome. For some, though, finding couple friends was difficult, with lives busy with work and family. "Sometimes couples go to Craigslist- our sampling of Craigslist websites in different cities did turn up groups like book clubs for couples, environmental groups, hikers, cooking, wine clubs, etc.," Greif said. "At the same time, we quote a couple at the beginning of the first chapter who advertised for friends in a small town and got responses from couples that wanted to swing. They removed their ad," he said. The researchers concluded that healthy couple friendships make a marriage more fulfilling and exciting for several reasons - by increasing partners' attraction to each other, providing a greater understanding of the opposite sex, and allowing partners to observe ways that other couples interact and negotiate differences. "With a great couple friendship, you get to see your partner at her/his best. "He or she is having fun, interacting in a loving and supportive way with another couple as well as with the partner," he added. The study has been published as part of the book 'Two Plus Two: Couples and Their Couple Friendships' by Greif and Kathleen Holtz Deal.Source: ANI << Employed Mums Do Not Like to be Idle Leprosy Pathogen Eludes Vital Vitamin D-Dependent Immune Res... >> Recommended Reading How to Save your marriage You can save your marriage - even when your partner insists on a divorce. READ MORE Divorce: Pros and Cons Divorce can be traumatic for children and create a sense of insecurity amongst them. Couples should realize that joined parenting is important even after divorce. READ MORE Infidelity Infidelity is no longer seen as a midlife crisis alone because younger people are beginning to cheat on their spouses READ MORE Is Life Better Staying Single or Getting Married? The stigma linked to staying single is gradually disappearing. More people opt to stay single and many even claim to be happier. But there are both advantages and disadvantages to staying single. READ MORE Most Popular on Medindia Indian Medical Journals Drug Side Effects Calculator Turmeric Powder - Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects More News on: How to Save your marriageDivorce: Pros and ConsIs Life Better Staying Single or Getting Married?