Couples who refer to themselves as ‘we’ and ‘us’ lead happier lives than others
LONDON: When a couple has been together for a very long time, it can be easy to think of themselves as a collective unit, a ‘two-for-one package’, rather than as separate individuals. While some may find the notion of excessive interdependence in a relationship slightly nauseating, according to recent research, couples who refer to themselves as “we” and “us” in conversation are more likely to be happier in love than those who don’t. Researchers from the University of California investigated the correlation between the use of first-person plural pronouns (such as “we”, “our”, “us”) and the health of romantic relationships. The team, led by psychologist Megan Robbins, analysed 30 studies involving more than 5,000 participants, half of whom were married. The researchers took five main factors into account: how long the couples have been together; their behaviour within the relationships; the mental health of the participants; their physical health; and how well they look after themselves on a daily basis. They came to the conclusion that “we-talk” proved beneficial in all categories, corresponding with happier relationships on all counts.