Lust to love

Three scientific tips to make a Hot Vax Summer romance last forever

It all comes back to one essential ingredient.

Our collective horny summer is in full swing. Hot Vax Summer is here.
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And as you keep swiping right, it is quite possible that for a lucky few, this season’s flings may even turn into lifelong love stories.

But what are the key factors that determine which summer flings transform and flourish as lasting relationships?

To find out, Florida State University professor James McNulty and his team reviewed the data from ten long-term studies involving 1,104 heterosexual married couples. They published their findings this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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The researchers look at how each partner’s personality and behavior contributed to relationship satisfaction. They consider factors like attachment style and neuroticism. So McNulty and his team interviewed the couples — and they did something else, too...

... they also watched footage of more than 350 hours worth of the couples’ conversations.

Personal accounts of perception and behavior aren’t always reliable, after all, so watching footage helps paint a fuller picture of how the relationship really works.

The scientists hit on three essential takeaways to turn Hot Vax Summer into the rest of your life...
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3. Communication

How well you articulate your thoughts and feelings to your partner — and how well you listen to them — may be critical.

Anyone who has pulled off a decades-long marriage will tell you that communication is a pillar of a solid partnership — and any kind of relationship, tbh.

Turns out the science backs up your elders’ wisdom.

Jane Duursma

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“It is during times of stress that a relationship can be either an asset or a liability... Clear and effective communication can help make the relationship an asset.”

2. Know your stressed self

Ask yourself: Do you know how you act under stress?

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“How two people treat each other appears to be particularly important when those partners are facing more stressors,” McNulty tells Inverse.

One of the best things you can do for yourself — and your partner — is to understand how you behave under stress.

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“Times of stress can amplify behavioral strengths and weaknesses — and even determine if a particular behavior is a strength or a weakness,” McNulty says.

Two critical things to know about yourself when you’re stressed:

1. How do you treat others?

2. How do you want others to treat you?

1. Know how your partner acts under stress
Anh Nguyen

Just like knowing yourself, knowing how your partner acts when they are stressed matters — as does knowing how they want to be treated when things get rough.


“The way you and a partner cope with stress together will be an important determinant of how resilient your relationship will be over time,” McNulty says.


Relationship satisfaction is complex and based on many factors, but if you know how to be resilient together under stress, then chances are you are setting yourself up for a long partnership.

Read more about relationships here.

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