Researchers claim that they have discovered a test that is 94% accurate in predicting the likelihood of divorce:
The results come from a series of intensive studies of 15-minute interviews with couples discussing contentious issues, such as sex or money. Trained observers tracked statements and facial expressions made by each partner and plotted graphs of ‘positivity’ against time for each conversation.
The equations seem to fall into five types, only three of which appear to be stable over long periods of time. To test this assertion, researchers interviewed 700 US couples who had recently wed, and made predictions about whether they would get divorced in the near future. Revisiting those same couples four years later, they found their predictions had a 94% success rate – better than therapists who carried out a similar exercise..
The crucial predictors, say the researchers, are the presence of facial expressions that accompany emotions such as contempt. For example, just watching a couple and looking for this expression, described as a sideways pull of a corner of the mouth accompanied by rolling eyes, is enough to make a good guess about a couple’s suitability. “This is our best predictor. Contempt is the sulphuric acid of love.”
Too bad you can’t take it before you’re married.