How To Unlock The Hidden Benefits Of Marriage By Asking Your Spouse These 5 Relationship Questions

Photo: getty 
5 Deep Questions For Married Couples That Unlock The Hidden Benefits Of Marriage

Do wedding vows really lead to a good marriage? What about a fairytale relationship that ends 'happily ever after?' Anyone who is married and has experienced the challenges couples inevitably face in their relationships might be tempted to scoff at that idea.

Yet, statistics quoted in Waite and Gallagher’s The Case for Marriagedo confirm that spouses who succeed in building a reasonably healthy marriage relationship, in fact, are likely to enjoy longer lives than unmarried or unhappily married folks.

They are likely, again according to the statistics, to enjoy better health too. What other benefits of marriage are there? Can being married, for instance, bring financial prosperity?

According to the multiple research studies quoted in The Case for Marriage, the answer is a resounding "yes". Financial payoffs for married couples are many. Married couples, in general, make more money than their single counterparts. They also save more money.

RELATED: 10 Questions Happy Couples Constantly Ask Each Other

Single-parenting and divorce, by contrast, can offer a fast route downhill into poverty. Fortunately though, for the single parent struggling to rise above subsistence-level money struggles, marriage can offer a fast lane into a financial comfort zone.

With all of the benefits of marriage, it makes sense to invest some time in building a better relationship with your significant other. 

One of the best ways to improve your marriage is by thinking of meaningful questions to ask your partner and yourself. 

These couples questions will help you connect with one another, and also challenge your perspective on your relationship. 

Are you ready to ensure that your marriage will increase your odds of being richer in happiness, health, and money, too?

Here are 5 deep questions for couples that can unlock the hidden benefits of marriage and ensure a relationship that lasts. 

1. How much fun are you having together? 

Couples who play together are more likely to stay together. Even just twenty minutes of talking together after the kids are in bed will do so much to refresh your connection.

Brainstorm some conversation questions throughout the day to get the most of this time.

Add the occasional date night and plus some weekend fun without the kids, and you'll up the odds in your favor that your good marriage will stay that way.

The way you spend time together, though, does matter. If your free time together ends up with each of you having an affair with the TV or computer, turn them off.

Face each other instead of facing the strangers on the screen.

Spend less time back-to-back, and more time face-to-face to reap the full benefits of eye-to-eye, smile-to-smile, and maybe even skin-to-skin connecting.

2. How do you talk to each other? 

This is one of the top overlooked, yet vital relationship questions. 

Do you show one another fondness and compassion? Do you say "yes" far more frequently than you say "but" or "no"?

How often do you express appreciation, hug each other, and share smiles? The more positives, the more you will be likely to get the goodies.

The more that you radiate sunshine to each other, the more happiness, health, and wealth you are likely to enjoy.

The flip can also happen. Emotional cold weather with criticism or silence, outbursts of stormy anger, or financial difficulties can drag you both down.

Still, the more you continue to radiate sunshine to each other, the less painful occasional negative emotions or money shortages will feel.

Sharing positives just about always makes it more likely that you will end up eventually with higher total emotional, physical, and financial health.

3. How often do you spend intimate time together?

The best things in life are free. Good sex may not be enough to make a good marriage, but if sexual sharing is rare to absent, your connection may become fragile.

As a popular saying from the early days of the women’s liberation movement goes, "Sex is a positive way of spending time."

RELATED: 20 Questions To Ask Your Guy When You Really Want To Know Everything

4. Do you make new experiences together?

Novelty strengthens partnerships. Anything new that you do together — a new game, exercise routine, shared volunteer project — can enhance your attachment.

5. Can you apologize to each other?

Healthy partners use healing apology skills after conflicts.

Admitting mistakes and learning from them goes a long way toward turning upsets into opportunities for an ever-better marriage.

Talking effectively about differences, responding to each others' concerns, and creating win-win solutions all add to partnership peacemaking.

How well do you communicate with your partner, especially after tough times? 

So, what's the takeaway? Sign yourself up for great life benefits by living in the bosom of a loving marriage.

Some maintenance, however, is required.

Treasure the pleasures in your marriage, build the skills to sustain goodwill, and remember, after upsetting moments, that learning from mistakes is part of cherishing each other.

Then, enjoy the windfall!

RELATED: If You Really Love Someone, You Ask These 10 Questions Every Day

Psychologist Susan Heitler, PhD works with couples to create lasting, harmonious love. She's the author of The Power of TwoThe Power of Two Workbook, and a free quiz you can take at her website to check your own marriage skill-building skills. 

YourTango may earn an affiliate commission if you buy something through links featured in this article.

This article was originally published at Psychology Today. Reprinted with permission from the author.