A study from the University of Houston found a link between jealousy and alcohol abuse in relationships, namely in people that use relationships to establish or boot self-esteem. As a press release for the study says it "links romantic jealousy, relationship-dependent self-esteem and alcohol problems for the first time" and hopes to be able to use these factors to identify alcohol dependence, and those at risk of dependence, more efficiently. The study looked at 277 women and found that those who identified their happiness was dependent on their relationship used alcohol to cope with jealousy, especially "for people who are less satisfied, less committed, and report feeling more disconnected from their partners."
The author of the study, Dr. Angelo DiBello, emphasized that while jealousy is such a common human experience, there has been relatively little inquest into its effects. DiBello said, "I think it is important to understand the role romantic jealousy plays in the larger context of problem behaviors. Ultimately, I hope to use findings like these to support the development of prevention and intervention efforts among individuals who may struggle with alcohol, self-esteem and relationship issues." Especially with the debilitating consequences of alcoholism, it's an important issue to look into. Unfortunately it's not the only way a bad relationship can affect you, here are some other physical effects of bad romantic relationships you should be aware of:
1. Multiple Breakups Can Be Bad For Your Mental Health
Especially if you're a woman. A 2004 study from the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health looked at over 4000 adults and found that multiple breakups, divorces, etc. had a negative impact on the mental health of respondents, more so for women, LiveScience reports.
2. How You Work As A Couple Affects Your Blood Pressure
A study in the Journal of Gerontology looked at 1300 married adults and found that it's not just about your personal stress level and blood pressure, it's how you work as a couple. For example, the Daily Mail reported that in couples where the wife was more stressed there was an adverse effect on the husband's blood pressure.
3. Confidence and Trust Levels Continue To Suffer After An Emotionally Abusive Relationship
Livestrong.com reports that "one of the most common and frequent psychological effects of emotional abuse is damaged self-confidence and self-worth," according to the Journal of Emotional Abuse. The study also found that not only did the trust issues develop toward the emotional abusive partner, it also created difficulties in other close relationships in the person's life.
4. Relationship Stress Can Mean More Troubled Disease Recovery
OK — all jokes aside, breast cancer patients suffering from marital stress had lower recovery rates than those who did not, according to a 2009 in the Journal of Cancer. The good news is that recent research shows that supportive relationships and marriages aid recovery. It's important in all of these instances to remember that it's not scaremongering about being in a relationship, just emphasizing how important it is to be in a functional, supportive one. You'll be sure to reap the benefits!
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