Having a shitty boyfriend sucks for a lot of reasons.
He ruins your self-esteem, your friends get mad at you for staying with him and it feels like every time you even try to have a fun night out, it turns into you crying in the bar bathroom on the phone trying to figure out where he is and why he's not responding.
But it turns out there's a whole other reason why having a shitty boyfriend is ruining your life, and this one has to do with your HEALTH.
Lead author, Dr. Emre Selçuk, a developmental and social psychologist at Middle East Technical University in Turkey, explains,
Our findings show that individuals with responsive partners experience lower anxiety and arousal, which in turn improves their sleep quality.
In case you missed the memo, sleep is important — not just for your mental health, but also for your physical health.
Sleep protects our bodies from wearing down physically. But there's a certain type of sleep we really should be getting if we really hope to protect ourselves from this wearing down process.
What kind of sleep, you ask? It's a high-quality, uninterrupted sleep called "restorative" sleep. It requires feelings of safety, security, protection and an absence of threats.
Selçuk explains that having a responsive and social SO is the best source of these feeling of safety. He says,
Having responsive partners who would be available to protect and comfort us should things go wrong is the most effective way for us humans to reduce anxiety, tension and arousal.
From having parents who made you feel safe and heard as a child to having romantic partners who made you feel comfortable and safe as an adult, having partners we believe are ready and willing to take care of us in case of emergencies leads to better sleep.
Taken together, the corpus of evidence we obtained in recent years suggests that our best bet for a happier, healthier and a longer life is having a responsive partner.
So... yeah. Maybe it's time to dump the irresponsible, cheating man child you call a boyfriend.
Unless, of course, you don't want a happier, healthier and longer life.