Why Do So Many People Stay In Bad Relationships?

We’ve all witnessed toxic relationships and wondered, ugh: what makes her stay?

Survey saaays… oxytocin! Wait, isn’t that the “love” hormone? Yep, but a new study in the journal Hormones and Behaviour found that partners who felt their significant other was distant and disengaged released more of that cuddly chemical than partners who felt cared for and supported.

If you’re stuck in this unhealthy surge, heed this: Uneven relationships often have unwritten rules, says behavioural endocrinologist and study author Nicholas Grebe. Unfollowing those rules can be the first step in restoring balance.

So if you find yourself pining for your partner when he makes you work for his affection, try switching roles to see if that helps him act the part of the “caring one” for a change.

This article originally appeared on Women’s Health US

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