Cracking the Code of Love: The Surprising Link Between Relationship (In)Congruency and Mental Health

Love and connection are integral parts of the human experience, often associated with better mental health and overall well-being. However, recent research has revealed that the impact of relationships on mental health goes beyond just being in a relationship. Factors like relationship desire, dismissal, and satisfaction with relationship status also play a crucial role in shaping our mental well-being.

In this article, we delve into a groundbreaking research study that explored the intricate interplay between relationship status, desire, dismissal, satisfaction, and mental health. Led by a team of passionate researchers, this study brings to light the importance of understanding the (in)congruency between our relationship goals and current status across various relationship groups.

The Power of (In)Congruency

The study, which focused on young adults aged 18 to 40, highlighted the profound effects of (in)congruency on mental health outcomes, including anxiety, depression, insomnia, and romantic loneliness. The concept of (in)congruency refers to the alignment, or lack thereof, between an individual’s desires and dismissals concerning relationships and their current relationship status.

Imagine, for a moment, someone who deeply yearns for a romantic relationship but finds themselves single. The incongruence between their relationship desire and status may lead to increased anxiety and feelings of loneliness. On the other hand, someone content with being single but in a casual dating relationship may experience higher anxiety and depression due to the mismatch between their desire for a casual setup and their current status.

Unraveling the Findings

The researchers meticulously studied 790 participants from various relationship statuses, including single, casual dating, living apart together (LAT), cohabitation, and engagement/marriage. One month after the initial assessment, they observed intriguing connections between (in)congruency and mental health outcomes.

For individuals in LAT relationships, greater relationship desire was associated with lower anxiety, suggesting that those who valued their LAT setup experienced reduced anxiety levels. However, in the casual dating group, higher relationship desire and dismissal were linked to increased anxiety and depression, respectively. This underscores the importance of understanding one’s relationship goals and how they align with their current status.

Satisfaction with relationship status also played a significant role in mental well-being. Single individuals who reported higher satisfaction with their relationship status exhibited lower depression levels. Similarly, cohabitors and engaged/married individuals who expressed greater satisfaction experienced reduced feelings of romantic loneliness.

Insights for Mental Health and Relationships

The findings of this study have profound implications for mental health and relationships. Understanding and addressing (in)congruency in relationship desires and dismissals can empower individuals to make informed decisions about their romantic lives and well-being.

If you find yourself feeling anxious or down despite being in a relationship, it might be beneficial to explore your desires and dismissals and see if they align with your current status. Open and honest communication with your partner about your feelings can lead to better emotional alignment and a healthier relationship.

For those navigating the single life, embracing satisfaction with your status can lead to a more fulfilling and contented life. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to relationships, and embracing your current status with a positive outlook can foster personal growth and happiness.


As we journey through the complexities of modern relationships, it becomes evident that mental health outcomes are influenced not only by relationship status but also by the harmony between our desires, dismissals, and satisfaction with our romantic lives. This groundbreaking study provides valuable insights into the intricate interplay between (in)congruency and mental health across diverse relationship statuses.

Let us embark on a path of self-discovery and introspection, understanding the desires that drive us, the dismissals that protect us, and the satisfaction that fulfills us. By aligning our hearts with our realities, we can unlock the door to healthier relationships and better mental well-being. Embrace the power of (in)congruency, and let it guide you towards a more fulfilling and enriching life of love and happiness.