What's the Latest Development?

Researchers at Brigham Young University asked young people who were either married, engaged, or "in a committed relationship" to complete a questionnaire describing how they used text messages to communicate with their partner. While many of those surveyed reported texting with their partner several times a day, the type and frequency of texts sent reflected the quality of the relationship. For example, the more texts women sent, the more likely it was that they were happy with their relationship, while the reverse was true for men: more texts, either received or sent, meant less satisfaction. Details of the research appeared in Journal of Couple and Relationship Therapy.

What's the Big Idea?

It may seem obvious to those of us who remember the days before texting, but when it comes to the kinds of issues that fall under basic "relationship management," it's probably best to put the smartphone down at some point, says lead study author Lori Schade. "You may need ways to say, 'This is getting too heated for me. I need to talk with you later about this in person.'" On the flip side -- and again, not surprisingly -- the frequency of loving and affirming texts corresponds to more satisfying relationships.

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