10 Seemingly Incompatible Qualities That Actually Make You Less Likely To Get Divorced
Sharing similar goals and values with your partner is important, but there is also a reason people always say opposites attract. Certain opposite personalities actually work well together, and there are a number of different complementing personality traits couples may have that make them less likely to get a divorce. Sometimes you need a little balance in temperaments to have a successful relationship, even if there are other areas where you tend to feel the same.
"Although generally people are attracted to people who are similar or perceived as similar to themselves, differences can help a relationship," psychotherapist Kelly Bos, MSW, RSW tells Bustle. "Sometimes it is a matter of seeking balance and enjoying seeing the opposite traits in your partner. An ideal marriage is one in which you grow and learn from each other and these differences, which can be frustrating at times, can highlight strengths and weaknesses and offer an opportunity for self-assessment, change and an appreciation for what your partner brings to the relationship."
This focus of growth is exactly what lessens the chance of divorce, says Bos. If you're different from your partner in these 11 ways, you're much more likely not to get divorced, according to experts.
1. Being Organized Vs. Disorganized
One person who is organized paired with another who is disorganized can work well if they develop a joint plan to stay organized that they can follow. "When the disorganized person is aware they don't have this skill, they might be less likely to disagree with the system that is developed and welcome a plan that they can follow," sex and relationship therapist Jeanette Tolson tells Bustle. "This usually works out better than if you have two people who are both organized because they often disagree about how to be organized, and they both feel like they do it the right way." This can also be an instance where one partner learns from the other, and ultimately grow.
2. Being Impulsive Vs. A Planner
Having one person who is more structured and the other who is more flexible can be beneficial. "The person who is more plan-oriented can make sure things get checked off the to do list, and take care of the details needed to do things like go on vacation or see a concert months in advance," therapist Rachel Gersten, LMHC, CHC tells Bustle. "On the other hand, the person who's more spontaneous can make sure that the planner isn't too 'by the book' and allows room for life's surprises as well." This combination could offer a good balance for the relationship.
3. Being A Morning Person Vs. A Night Person
Even though this difference may seem like your schedules won't meet up, having one night person and one morning person in your relationship allows you to have space that you both need to keep a relationship healthy. "When one person is a morning person and the other is a night person, they can each have their own part of the day where they thrive the most and have their own 'me' time," says Tolson. "Physical intimacy can be alternated between morning and night as well, which can add novelty and excitement to the bedroom."
4. Being A Budgeter Vs. A Person Who Splurges
Matters of money can cause a rift, but if you learn from one another to create balance, it can lead to a positive partnership. "When one person budgets money and the other goes by 'spend as you go,' this can work if they can come up with both a budget and a discretionary amount that either party can spend in a particular month," says Tolson. "This helps them to be sure that their bills are paid but at the same time, they can both splurge at times and ensure that are participating in self-care."
5. Being Introverted Vs. Extroverted
It's OK if one person is more social than the other. "Although it's important for each person to have close friends and/or family outside of the relationship, it can be mutually beneficial if one person is higher on the socializing scale than the other," says Gersten. "The more reserved person can help the more outgoing person be comfortable with having downtime or sharing the spotlight. On the other hand, the more outgoing person can help the more reserved person meet more people and have more experiences than they normally would on their own."
6. Being A Perfectionist Vs. Flexible
Couples with one person who is a perfectionist and one who is more flexible tend to work well. "Perfectionism is a relatively tame trait and is less likely to lead to arguments among couples [when balanced by a flexible partner]," therapist Dana Koonce, MA, LMFT tells Bustle. "If one member takes a more flexible approach to things, they can help draw the perfectionistic member of the couple out of their rigid, 'black and white' thinking patterns."
7. Being Unsure Vs. Confident
While most people will have some degree of insecurities, generally speaking, a self-assured partner can both help a more unsure partner find their confidence, and ground them more when it comes to arguments. "When arguing ... two insecure people will often feed off of and enhance each others' insecurities," says Koonce. When one partner is more secure, Koonce says they can be more logical and steady in an argument, preventing the less self-assured person from jumping to conclusions.
8. Being High Maintenance Vs. Low Maintenance
High maintenance people often get a bad rap, but they are usually the ones who are always striving to make everything around them the best it can be and paying attention to all the details other people overlook. Low maintenance people, on the other hand, are more go with the flow and laid back. "Sounds like a perfect match for those who need things to be a certain way, right?" says Gersten. "Two people who are particular can lead to a lot of disagreements, but one person paired with someone who lets them do their thing can be a perfect match."
9. Having High Vs. Low Stress Tolerance
How partners deal with stress can greatly impact the security of their relationship. "Two partners that are both easily aggravated or overwhelmed by stress (low stress tolerance) might find that the health of their relationship is negatively correlated with the current levels of stress in their lives," psychotherapist Kathleen Dahlen deVos tells Bustle. "Conversely, two partners both with high stress tolerance might find that there is little urgency to repair issues in the relationship as they arise. In a couple where partners differ in their tolerance for stress, stress does not run the show in the relationship, but partners have the opportunity to attend to the concerns of the other as they arise."
10. Being A Dreamer Vs. A Realist
"Someone who is a 'dreamer,' that is to say, someone who is a creative, imaginative, 'head in the clouds' type might welcome the stability and grounding of someone who sees things from a more concrete, matter-of-fact perspective," says deVos. "Likewise, the Realist can sometimes become too focused on what is right in front of them, and partnering with a Dreamer could encourage them to expand their thinking into more innovative, playful or unique realms."
There are times when you want to be on the same page as your partner, but sometimes complementing personalities can work wonders for your marriage.