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... Recipe for long-lasting love Recipe for long-lasting love

2 October 2008

Two dinner dates a month, four cuddles a day and a romantic getaway twice a year are just some of the things couples need to have a long-lasting relationship, according to research.

A survey of 4,000 couples found that men and women need to spend 22 periods of quality time together if they are to have a happy marriage.

Other recipes for a romantic relationship include a trip to the theatre or cinema once a month, three general romantic gestures each month, breakfast in bed once every four weeks and six proper conversations every month.

The average British couple has one visit to the pub, one cinema trip and two romantic strolls each month.

Couples who cuddle the most often were found to have the longest-lasting relationships and described themselves as the most happy.

It seems that Britain really is a nation that believes in love and romance as 98 per cent of the 'very happy' couples said they felt lucky to have such a great relationship with their husband or wife.

Meanwhile 94 per cent said they think they have the strongest relationship of any couple they know.

Chief educational psychologist Dr Ludwig F Lowenstein, who helped conduct the study, said: "Affection, cuddles and romantic gestures are part of a whole romantic scene which is desired by those entering a relationship.

"They are the safe gestures which say - 'I like you, I am glad to be with you, I like and appreciate your support and care.'

"In this busy world we often take our partners for granted whilst we get on with our daily struggles of work and rearing a family."

Dr Lowenstein added that Britons often forget how important hugs are, with couples being more affectionate during courting and their early years together and cuddling less as they grow older because "familiarity breeds contempt".

The most frequent act of romance is cuddling up in front of the TV with couples do

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