We have discussed before that testosterone levels impact libido, energy levels, mood and other factors. Now, scientists are also finding a link between testosterone and the quality of relationships. Do testosterone levels impact the ability to sustain a long-term relationship? Can levels of testosterone predict the relationship quality? Read on to find out.
What the data shows
Studies have shown that people in committed relationships have lower levels of testosterone than single people or people in new relationships. Additionally, men with lower levels of T (but of course, still within the normal range) adjust better to long-term relationships and marriage. These men are less inclined to cheat, less likely to consider divorce. They are generally more content within their relationships.
Studies monitored both men and women’s satisfaction in their relationships and their commitment. Those with higher levels of satisfaction and commitment were found to have lower levels of testosterone.
It seems strange to think that this may be the case. After all, if you’re committed and in love with someone, surely your testosterone levels and subsequently libido would be higher. But the opposite is true, and it actually makes more sense.
It wouldn’t be good for people who are settled in their relationships to have really high levels of testosterone. In fact, it would actually be more harmful since it would decrease marital satisfaction. We have spoken before about the dangers of T levels being too high. Relationships are definitely one of the things that are compromised, as we see.
T levels change according to life stages. Research has similarly found that new fathers will also experience a decrease in T levels. This, presumably is because of changing the focus from mating to nurturing. Of course, this is not saying that testosterone levels should be too low during a relationship. When the levels are too low, it can lead to a lack of interest in sex, low energy, depression, and even disease. This is what we at TestoMed work hard to help our patients avoid.
The question is, do testosterone levels affect relationship quality? Or does relationship quality alter testosterone levels?
There is a clear link between T levels and relationships, but it is less clear which one affects the other. Similarly, we can ask ourselves if testosterone levels predict a relationship or if the relationship predicts the testosterone levels. The levels change according to life events. For example, long-term relationships, marriage or having kids. Yet there are also men who have naturally higher levels of T. It might mean they are more likely to end serious relationships and have trouble with commitment.
High testosterone levels in a relationship
When there’s too much testosterone in a relationship, the worry is a lack of stability and long-term commitment. Either partner may be seeking out new partners and not feeling content in their current relationship. More T makes for better libido and performance, and this can be great for a couple’s sex life. Yet when T levels are too high there is the risk of high blood pressure, aggression and becoming overly confident. This could have a negative effect on a relationship since relationships need care, empathy and nurturing.
Low testosterone levels in a relationship
Lowe levels are associated with long-term relationships, but again, this is when the levels are still within the normal, healthy range. But if your levels get too low it could result with problems in the bedroom, a lack of energy, mood swings, sleep disturbances, lack of self-confidence and poor memory. All of these factors can have a negative impact on any relationship, including the non-romantic ones.
It is normal for T levels to decline with age. It is also expected that your testosterone levels will be lower once you’re in a stable relationship. But these lower levels are still within the realm of normal. When levels drop too much it can drastically affect your way of life and your relationship, and could be a risk factor for other diseases. Men suffering from low levels of T can undergo testosterone therapy to bring the levels back to normal and to resume a satisfactory way of life.
Make sure that both you and your partner have balanced testosterone levels in order to achieve a truly healthy relationship. Too much in either direction can have consequences on both the individual and the relationship.