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Feb 04, 2014 08:55 AM EST

Romantic Movies Reduce Divorce Rates among Newlyweds, Study

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Romantic movies are cheaper and more effective in reducing the divorce rates among newlyweds than a vacation to an exotic location or counselling sessions, according to a University of Rochester study. Researchers said that watching and discussing rom coms/chic flicks help reduce the divorce rates in half among three-year-old newlyweds, thereby maintaining a happy and a healthy marriage.

Researchers said that watching romantic love stories and having conversation around it is as effective as intense therapist sessions. It helps in lowering the divorce rates from 24 to 11 percent in marriages of three years, the period where the honeymoon phase is over!

But romantic films save a lot of money that goes into therapy sessions and vacations.

"We thought the movie treatment would help but not nearly as much as the other programmes in which we were teaching all of these state-of-the-art skills," said lead author Ronald Rogge in a press release. "There are really great marriage intervention programs available now but most require trained therapists to administer them. If couples can do this on their own, it makes it so much easier to help them. It's incredibly portable."

For the study, the researchers divided 174 newlywed couples into three groups: the conflict management group, where they learnt to handle intense discussions; the compassion and acceptance training group, where they attended lectures and practised random acts of kindness; and the last group was the relationship and awareness group - here couple watched five romantic flicks over a five-week period followed by a 45-minute discussion.

The researchers found that all the three groups were effective in preserving their marriages. They said that the couples are well aware of their actions, good/bad, in their relationships.

"Thus, you might not need to teach them a whole lot of skills to cut the divorce rate. You might just need to get them to think about how they are currently behaving. And for five movies to give us a benefit over three years - that is awesome," said Rogge.

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