Romanticism will never die, but that’s not stopping British researchers from trying to come up with a recipe for the perfect marriage. Said recipe is said to be as efficient as it’s completely devoid of all the things that poets love to write about: in short, it implies the wife has to be at least five years younger than the husband and smarter than him. At the same time, history of divorce downsizes chances of success, the BBC
The perfect model of a long-lasting relationship that can evolve into a successful marriage is that of R&B singer Beyonce and rapper and music producer Jay-Z. According to the recently developed formula, these two will stand the test of time, as Beyonce is younger than Jay-Z, while also being smarter, in that she has a high-school diploma and he doesn’t. Another important aspect is that neither was married and divorced before.
Published in the European Journal of Operational Research and conducted by Dr. Emmanuel Fragniere, the study looked at over 1,500 couples, married or in a serious relationship. Five years later, researchers interviewed the couples again to see which lasted and what those that lasted had in common. As it turns out, the age gap, the difference in education and a history of failed marriages played a very important part in a couple’s odds of success.
“They found that if the wife was five or more years older than her husband, they were more than three times as likely to divorce than if they were the same age. If the age gap is reversed, and the man is older than the woman, the odds of marital bliss are higher. […] Those who have never divorced fare better too. But couples in which one member has been through a divorce in the past are less stable than those in which both members are divorcees.” BBC writes of the findings of the latest study.
Based on that last detail, it would seem that Michael Douglas’ marriage to Catherine Zeta Jones has less chances of success than that of Beyonce and Jay-Z. While it respects the age and education gap criteria, Douglas is a one-time divorcee. However, researchers insist people look for partners “on the basis of love, physical attraction, similarity of taste, beliefs and attitudes, and shared values.” Still, some factors, such as those mentioned above, can help reduce the rate of divorce.