Love is holding hands into old age, laughing at things you don’t find funny and knowing when to bite your tongue - according to those who’ve experienced it the longest.
A study of 2000 over 50’s explored the real extent of the ‘for better for worse’ elements of long-lasting love to unveil 50 signs of the real thing- with building a home together and not being afraid to show weakness high.
While kissing at least 14 times a week was critical to keeping the fire burning year after year.
Researchers delved into the intricacies of a successful relationship and unearthed and categorised the 50 most common responses to the question ‘what is love?’.
Saying ‘I love you’ at least nine times a week was also integral to long term happiness, results showed.
Encouraging silliness in one another, learning to get along with the in-laws and avoiding jealousy if the other person spends time with the opposite sex were also deemed key factors in cementing a long-lasting love.
The research, which was commissioned by www.retirementmove.co.uk, found love blossoms four and a half months into a new relationship- revealed as the time feelings really start to develop on average.
But only nine per cent believed in a love that could strike instantly or at first sight.
However there is optimism, just under half of those polled went as far as to say they believed in the concept of ‘the one’ when it comes to romance and just one in seven weren’t convinced.
Richard Drew, CEO of Retirement Move said: “The list of what it takes to make love last covers a range of warm, quirky and honest pearls of wisdom from people who have really experienced love in all its forms.
He continued: “What the data reveals is that the warmest bonds and most valued memories aren’t necessarily always the big standout things like exciting holidays or calendar moments, but actually in the living and enjoying of one another day to day.”
But love doesn’t always come easily and over half (56 per cent) feel they don’t fall in love easily. 49 per cent of Brits said they would choose falling in love over winning the lottery, results showed. However, more than a quarter (29 per cent) would rather take the cash than fall in love. One in six people proposed to their partner in the living room.
Nearly a quarter of those retired said the best thing about not having to work was getting spend quality time with the person they loved. While two thirds thought love definitely gets stronger with age, just one in 12 per cent thought otherwise.