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UC Berkeley researchers find the old saying, "happy wife, happy life," is true

Did you forget today is Valentine's Day? Well, it turns out that old saying, "happy wife, happy life," is true. Better make a few stops on your way home; candy flowers and a fabulous dinner are needed if you want a happy marriage.

Valentine's Day
Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images

New research, more than 25 years in the making, shows that a wife's happiness really does dictate the long-term success of a marriage. UC Berkeley psychologist Robert Levenson began studying a group of more than 150-East Bay married couples in the 1980's in order to answer the question; what makes a happy marriage last?

Levenson and his team came up with a few conclusions, one of them being that the key to a long marriage lies in the wife's ability to calm down after an argument. Researchers found that wives with the genetic ability to regulate serotonin, a hormone that plays a part in mood regulation, have a higher rate of marital satisfaction. The research showed that a husband's ability to control his mood after an argument did not affect the satisfaction in the marriage. They also found that couples who say 'we, ' no matter how annoying it is to the rest of us, are better at resolving conflict than those who do not.

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