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Listen to Your Gut

Your Body is Trying to Warn You

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Butterflies in Stomach
Photo: Colin Hawkins / Getty Images

It is important that you listen to your gut if you are having doubts about getting married, staying married, or if you question your spouse's fidelity.

Your intuition, those interior whispers, may be telling you something. A 2001 test based on an analysis of hormone levels could give a good indication of which couples are doomed to have failed marriages.

Research on Hormones:

A team from Ohio University spent ten years developing the test which looks at levels of the hormones epinephrine (adrenaline), norepinephrine, ACTH, and cortisol. These chemicals are involved in the process of preparing the body to deal with confrontation.

Taking samples from 90 married couples and then going back ten years later, the scientists discovered that levels of three out of four of the hormones were consistently higher in couples (19 percent) who divorced. The team also measured the couples' individual personality differences and problem-solving behaviors.

"These couples were pristine," said lead researcher Dr. Janice Kiecolt-Glaser. "We eliminated any couples who exhibited risky behaviors or profiles that might normally interfere with relationships, like smoking or drinking, or a diagnosis of depression or other disorder. We wanted to have couples who had everything going for them. These couples were gloriously happy with each other."
Kiecolt-Glaser also said: "The literature suggests that behavioural matters, such as negativity or aggression might be the best predictors of divorce, but we found that the best predictors of all were hormone levels. The data show that women, in particular, register much higher levels of stress hormones, like epinephrine, than men do, in times of conflict. These higher levels of stress hormones do not go away. They stay elevated during more routine interaction, and are even elevated at night, when they are sleeping. It's not genetic, as far as we can tell. It looks like it is simply a reaction to the presence of the spouse."

Bottom line -- your body and that pit in your stomach is talking to you. Listen to the little voice inside you. You don't want to miss the clues and red flags that could be in your relationship. 

You  will know you've made a decision you can live with by the sense of peace you feel within you.

Source: The study findings were presented at the 22nd annual scientific session of the Society of Behavioral Medicine, in Seattle, Washington, March 23, 2001.

Another study with the same conclusion was conducted at Florida State University in November 2013.

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