Had a troubled relationship with your parents while growing up? Don’t let it spoil your romantic life this Valentine’s.
The love between parents and teens – however rocky or peaceful – may influence whether those children are successful in romance, even up to 15 years later, according to new research.
“Being aware of that connection may save a lot of heartache down the road,” advised Matt Johnson, a relationship researcher at Canada-based University of Alberta.
The findings uncovered a small but important link between parent-adolescent relationship quality and intimate relationships 15 years later. The effects can be long-lasting, added Johnson who explores the complexities of the romantic ties that bind.
The analysis showed that good parent-teen relationships resulted in slightly higher quality of romantic relationships for those grown children years later.
People tend to compartmentalise their relationships and do not see the connection between one kind – such as family relations – and another, like couple unions.
“But understanding your contribution to the relationship with your parents would be important to recognise any tendency to replicate behaviour – positive or negative – in an intimate relationship,” explained Johnson.
That doesn’t mean parents should be blamed for what might be wrong in a grown child’s relationship.
It is important to recognise everyone has a role to play in creating a healthy relationship, and each person needs to take responsibility for their contribution to that dynamic, noted the study appeared in the Journal of Marriage and Family.
The results were found from survey-based information from 2,970 people who were interviewed at three stages of life from adolescence to young adulthood, spanning ages 12 to 32.