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In-Laws relationshipsThe holidays are approaching, and we all know what this entails. Family, friends, social obligations, and strain on relationships. The desire for spouses to look the part of the perfect union during these festive times can put increasing strain on those marriages which are already showing chinks in their armor. So will having to spend time with the in-laws help or hurt a marriage that is precariously teetering on the edge of a potential divorce? A study 25 years in the making may have some answers and insight as to whether winning over your in-laws can eventually save your marriage.

A Study In-Law

According to, an upcoming study being published in an issue of the Journal of Family Relations will show the importance of the relations by both spouses in a marriage with their in-laws. The study, which was started back in 1986, by Terri Orbuch, a psychologist and research professor at the University of Michigan’s Institute for Social Research, followed 373 couples who were newlyweds back in 1986.

At the beginning of the study, Orbuch asked the men and women to rate, on a scale of one to four, how close they felt to their in-laws, and has since tracked their relationships and results over the past 26 years.


After 26 years, the results of the study were two-fold, divided among the sexes. Results showed when a man reported having a close, positive relationship with the parents of his wife, that couple’s risk of divorce decreased by 20%. However, women who claimed to have a close relationship with their husbands parents were shown to have their risk of divorce increase by 20%.

Some of it makes sense, and again, it’s mainly a gender thing. Males, when they get married, are reportedly more excited and looking forward to the idea of gaining a new and larger family. Also, it was shown that men are less likely to worry about their in-laws interfering.

“Men tend to identify as a provider first and a father and husband second, so they don’t find their in-laws input particularly threatened,” stated Orbuch in the article.

Regardless of the various reasons why a troubled marriage ends in  divorce, the divorce process does not have to be a drawn out process. These days, online divorces can provide couples who have come to an understanding a simple, painless divorce. At, we can provide the necessary divorce forms and divorce law information for every U.S. state. Visit today and learn more about how online divorce can be the starting point of a new and better future.

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