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Enduring Love?

  1. Enduring Love?

Project outline

The Enduring Love? research project is an exciting development in the study of personal and family lives in contemporary Britain. Much recent policy, academic and professional research has focused on the causes and effects of relationship breakdown, but many heterosexual and LGBT couples also remain together for significant periods of time. In some ways, then, these couples appear to sit outside a growing tendency towards serial or transitory relationships. To understand more about couples who stay together, our research will focus on the meanings and everyday experiences of long-term relationships. However we will not be presupposing that such relationships are uniformly loving or straightforwardly associated with contentment. The project will rather be concerned with what helps people sustain relationships and how cultural myths, such as finding ‘the one’ and living ‘happily-ever-after’, are understood and reconciled by adult couples whose own relationships may fall short of these romantic ideals.

iTunes audio

In a collection of audio and video podcasts, couples reflect on love and commitment, the effect of children, and the 'relationship work' which they do to sustain their relationships.

Listen to the programmes now

The Enduring Love? Couple Relationships in the 21st Century project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC RES-062-23-3056).


  • Relationship Education Resources

    Relationship education Big Ben

    OU-Brook online relationship information resources for young people and an eLearning teaching pack designed for use in schools as part of sex and relationship education (SRE) curriculum are launched at the House of Commons (13/09/16), in an event hosted by cross-party MPs.


  • Impact Award

    Jacqui Gabb impact award

    In recognition of its innovative and wide ranging impact and public engagement activities, the inaugural Evelyn Gillian Research Impact Award (2016) was awarded to Jacqui Gabb at the International CRFR conference in Edinburgh.


  • Relationship Handbook

    Relationship handbook

    Findings have been published for a general readership in a self-help handbook, simultaneously serialized by the Daily Mail (1-5/02/2016). The Secrets of Enduring Love was launched at the Art of Relationships event hosted at the Royal Society of Arts, London, with a live performance from David McAlmont and Guy Davies.