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Bad marriage? Blame your DNA

Genetics may be responsible for the color of your eyes, your height and even your shoe size, but would you expect divorce to be coded in your DNA? That's right, Maryland couples who split up may be able to look to their genetic code for answers, rather than simply blaming themselves.

Research conducted by scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, in conjunction with those at Northwestern University, have found that some people are actually genetically coded to like marriage more. For some, the emotions in the relationship have a stronger impact on the relationship's health. In other words, when their relationship is going well, people with a certain genetic structure tend to be happier, and vice versa. Interestingly, the genetic link relates to a serotonin-producing gene; a shortage of serotonin, a feel-good chemical, is often to blame for clinical depression.

Researchers say those with two shorter copies of the gene are more likely to be personally affected by their relationship. They compare these people to flowers in a hothouse, who blossom when the climate is positive but wither under less-favorable conditions. In addition, the scientists say that the impact of the genetic deficiency is easier to identify in older adults. Scientists think that individuals may be more susceptible to their genetic codes as they age. This is thought to be the first study to link genetics, marital satisfaction and emotions, according to news reports.

Although we cannot admittedly blame our genetic code for every marital problem, it could be helpful to identify yourself as a person who is more likely to be influenced by the health of your relationship. Still, some marriages are just not sustainable, even with this type of self-actualization. Those who are finding themselves in unhappy relationships should consider seeking the assistance of qualified family lawyers and divorce attorneys, who can explain more about legal options and rights.

Source:, "Marital satisfaction may be controlled by gene, says study" Lydia O'Connor, Oct. 08, 2013

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