Long working hours good for marriages

Think working long hours is bad for your marriage? Think again.

According to a new study out of Australia, working long hours may help prolong a marriage.

"The optimal work arrangement appears to be where the man works a 41- to 49-hour week," according to Melbourne Institute economist Mark Wooden, who conducted the research, and was quoted in the Australian newspaper the Telegraph.

"Beyond this, the risk of separation does rise, but it is still lower than for couples where the male works a 35- to 40-hour work week."

Wooden used data which tracked Australian families between 2002 and 2006, to conclude that long work hours do not result in higher divorce rates.

So what is it? Less time to fight? No one is laying around on the couch just drinking beer?

Maybe it has to do with work ethic and money. While it may not be romantic, money does make a difference in marriage. Money remains the number one issue that couples fight about and many couples divorce when they can't work out their differences.

When couples do work out how they are going to handle money it can be very rewarding. Many folks who come to see me in my private practice report that when they work and save together for something, it feels like a real partnership. They set goals like a house, car, or vacation and then work together to achieve them.

It becomes especially fun when there is a little discretionary money to have some fun with. That is, the money after you have taken out savings, paid the bills and routine expenses. It is a great feeling to go out to dinner or a movie, and not have to worry about finances. Doing it with someone you love is even better.

I don't know about you, but I just told my husband to get back to work.

Barbara Bartlein is a relationship expert. For more tips to improve your relationship, please visit: Marriage Tips

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