The Need for Companionship

Good companions enjoy spending time together in conversation and recreational activities. As a general rule, spouses should be able to look forward to the next time they will be together, rather than dreading it. Time spent enjoyably together builds and strengthens the marital relationship. Conversely, the lack of companionship in a marriage can produce deep loneliness in both spouses.

Researchers have found through controlled experiments (substantiated by surveys)1 that participation in novel and exciting activities together can cause couples to feel greater satisfaction in their relationships. The research suggests that trying new, jointly chosen recreational activities together can help sustain and increase romance in marriage. Other research suggests that it is important that couples participate together in recreational activities that both enjoy. In one study,2 the more time couples spent together in activities that only the husband liked, the less happy they became. Similarly, the more time husbands spent in recreational activities without their wives, the less happy their marriages became.

1“Couples' shared participation in novel and arousing activities and experienced relationship quality” by A. Aron, C. C. Norman, E. N. Aron, C. McKenna and R. E. Heyman. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 78:273-284 (2000).
2“Compatibility, leisure, and satisfaction in marital relationships” by D. W. Crawford, R. M. Houts, T. L. Huston and L. J. George. Journal of Marriage and the Family 64:433-449. (2002).

For Women:

Meet your husband's need for companionship.

Help your husband meet your need for companionship.

For Men:

Meet your wife's need for companionship.

Help your wife meet your need for companionship.

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