While there’s no denying that drinking can help with stress, and depending on what you drink it has antioxidant properties (red wine, we’re looking at you), and well, let’s face it, facts aside it’s just generally awesome.
But now we have another excuse to crack open the vino thanks to our friends at University of Michigan in Ann Arbor who have found that couples who drink together are better off than those marriages where only one partner drinks.
The study of 3,000 couples, who had been married on average for 33 years, found that the couples where one partner does the majority of the drinking tend to ne unhappier. Even moreso when it was the wife who was the drinker.
Couples were interviewed by researchers as well as answering questionnaires surrounding their drinking habits and the quality of their marriage. Questions included how often they drank and whether their partners were critical or supportive.
"We’re not suggesting that people should drink more or change the way they drink," study author Dr. Kira Birditt of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, who studies relationships across adulthood, told Reuters.
"We’re not sure why this is happening," she added, "but it could be that couples that do more leisure time activities together have better marital quality."
Couples who both abstained from drinking also maintained healthy relationships.
Of the people surveyed, around 20 percent of men and 6 percent of women were found to have significant drinking problems.
"Problem drinkers are a whole different kettle of fish," added Dr. Fred Blow, also at the University of Michigan, who was not involved with the study.
"Serious heavy drinkers have disruptive relationships with people, particularly their partners. That’s an important issue that should be looked at going forward."
Always remember to drink responsibly.