According to a recent study published in the Journal of Family Psychology, married couples can be counted on to recognize each other’s emotions accurately during conflict. Anger and sadness, for example, are supposedly easily detected. But what if you combine these two emotions? Can married couples read each other just as well?

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW
CONTINUE READING BELOW
Recommended Videos

Researchers conducted an experiment involving 83 married couples to find out. Aside from answering a survey, the participants were also asked to talk about two relatively sensitive topics (each person was able to choose a topic) before rating their own emotions and their partner’s as well. The exchange was videotaped through a one way mirror.

Upon observation, it appeared that the participants were quick to recognize feelings of anger. Unfortunately, it seemed that they were less adept at discerning the underlying sadness that came with the initial burst of emotion. "When it comes to perceiving emotion in a partner, anger trumps sadness,” says Keith Sanford, PhD, an associate professor of psychology and neuroscience in Baylor University's College of Arts & Sciences.

Researchers initially expected the couples to use their insider knowledge of each other to be able to read emotions accurately. However, this so-called knowledge only surfaced when soft emotions like hurt or disappointment made themselves known. And while women reportedly display more soft emotions, they are actually no better at perceiving emotions in their partners.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Conflict left unresolved will always pose a problem for couples. Small emotions like disappointment always have a way of snowballing into something more serious. If you are both angry and hurt, researchers suggest pulling back some of your anger and letting your sadness show. According to Sanford, "there may be times where it is beneficial to express feelings of sadness during conflict, but sad feelings are most likely to be noticed if you are not simultaneously expressing anger."

(Screencap from P.S. I Love You courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures)

Personal Loan Calculator
Use this calculator to know how much you'll be paying based on current interests of banks.*
This is required.
This is required.
*Rates can change without prior notice.
Continue
Get the latest updates from Female Network
Subscribe to our Newsletter!
Comments
Trending on Network

Latest Stories

Underarm Kits You Can Use at Home for Brighter, More Even-Toned Skin

Slough off dirt and even out your tone in two to three easy steps.
Load More Stories