1 in 3 singles have been in a loveless relationship

The latest study by www.elitesingles.com.au has revealed some surprising truths about the state of Australians’ relationships.

Of the 500 Australians polled, results found;

  • 32% of singles have been in a perfectly functional yet loveless relationship; 52% of these loveless relationships lasted for more than 5 years
  • 21% of singles believe that a relationship can work without love
  • 41% of singles consider an ex to be the love of their life

Top 5 reasons singles stay in a loveless relationship

Thirty-two percent of singles admitted to having spent time in a loveless relationship. Of these, 11% lasted 1-2 years, 15% lasted 2-5 years, and a staggering 52% lasted more than five years.

It seems some singles don’t necessarily see loveless relationships as dysfunctional; 21% of singles believe that a relationship can work without either partner loving the other, and 17% would prefer to be in a loveless relationship than alone.

The top five reasons for remaining in a loveless relationship were:

  1. For the kids, 40%
  2. Fear of being alone, 23%
  3. Out of laziness, 16%
  4. Financial reasons, 15%
  5. Fear of what people will think, 3%

Only 2% of participants indicated sex or intimacy as a reason to stay together.

Singles despair: 2 in 5 believe the love of their life has come and gone

Sadly, forty-one percent of singles consider an ex to be the love of their life. But despite the heartbreak, singles appear to remain upbeat; 77% of singles believe love is more likely to increase than decrease over time, and  83% of singles would rather be alone than in a loveless relationship.

Unrequited feelings: better to love or be loved?

In the case of an imbalanced relationship (where one person in the partnership is still in love, but the other is not) singles were asked which they would prefer; to love or be loved. A surprisingly large percentage of singles indicated they would be willing to suffer unrequited love – 39% said they would prefer to love than be loved. 

‘Should I stay or should I go?’ Psychologist Salama Marine offers advice to lovelorn couples

Many of those in a loveless relationship may ask themselves whether the relationship is still salvageable, or whether they should cut their losses and move on. EliteSingles’ Psychologist Salama Marine psychologist says, ‘Ask yourself the following questions;

1) Is your partnership rewarding, or are you giving up your freedom for relatively little return?
2) Are you really attached to your partner, or simply to the idea of a partnership?
3) Can you rely on your partner, or do you feel alone when times get tough?
4) Are you satisfied with your sex life?

Reflect on the answers to these questions and ask yourself if you are in the partnership for the right reasons. Is there enough there to build upon in the future? If you decide to continue with the relationship, remember that being in a relationship is not a passive process. Love isn’t a case of ‘there one day, gone the next’ – you need to work on it every day.’