Is A Marriage Compatibility Test Reliable?
With the rise of online quizzes and personality assessments, you’ve likely come across—or perhaps even taken—relationship or marriage compatibility tests. These tests are designed to help you gain perspective on your compatibility with your partner. But how accurate are they, really? Which insights should you be using from them, and which ones should you leave behind? Continue reading to find out.
What Are Marriage Compatibility Tests?
Marriage compatibility tests are short tests or quizzes, usually taken online, that claim to be able to tell you how compatible you are with your spouse or fiancé. By helping you identify your and your partner’s similarities and differences, they may be able to give you perspective on your values, goals, and certain aspects of your personality that may be relevant to the future of your marriage.
Although they may be a useful tool for reflecting on your relationship, marriage compatibility tests are not foolproof, and they often do not provide comprehensive information. With this in mind, let’s dive into what these quizzes can tell you about your relationship—as well as what they can’t.
What Marriage Compatibility Tests Can Tell You
Marriage compatibility tests are useful for gaining general insight into your relationship with a spouse or future spouse. They can be good sources of information about:
Your general values: Marriage compatibility tests can help you get in touch with what’s important to you: your ethics, morals, and priorities in your life and relationships. This can give you a sense of what you’re looking for in an ideal partner—such as spontaneity, humor, physical affection, or predictability—as well as traits and actions that you would consider “deal-breakers” in a relationship.
Your partner’s general values: Similarly, compatibility tests can also provide insight into what’s important to your partner. By answering questions about their habits, preferences, and behaviors, you can often get a sense of what they value and look for in a relationship, as well as what their boundaries may be. Keep in mind that these insights are not foolproof, and communicating directly with your partner is often the best way to understand what’s important to them.
Potential areas of concern: Depending on the test, compatibility tests may be able to provide insight into where your and your partner’s values clash. This can be a useful way of pinpointing potential sources of conflict and reflecting on what areas of your relationship you want to prioritize in order to avoid challenges down the line.
What Marriage Compatibility Tests Cannot Tell You
For all the information a relationship compatibility test can provide, it's important to remember that it is still just that: a test. Marriage compatibility tests have a range of limitations, and they cannot tell you everything there is to know about your dynamic with your partner, including:
The future of your relationship: A compatibility test can give you a general view into your and your partner’s similarities and differences, but it cannot definitively tell you how your relationship will evolve or make predictions about whether it will last.
Whether you should get (or stay) married to someone: Despite their name, marriage compatibility tests should not serve as the deciding factor for marrying or staying married to someone. This is a topic best explored with your partner, support network, and, potentially, a relationship counselor.
How to address challenges: Although a marriage compatibility test may be able to provide insight into potential areas of conflict, it generally cannot provide advice for navigating present or future relationship challenges. Therefore, it should not be seen as a resource for managing marriage issues.
Gaining Relationship Insight Through Therapy
As you can see, although compatibility tests can provide a general view into your and your partner’s priorities and preferences, they cannot give you definitive answers about whether to proceed with a relationship or how to address challenges in your marriage. However, other resources are available if you would like to explore your compatibility with your partner in more detail. One of these resources is marriage counseling, which can be a useful way to improve communication, get in alignment about goals and priorities, and develop strategies for navigating conflict and disagreement. Couples exploring marriage may also benefit from pre-marital counseling: a particular form of relationship counseling focused on preparing partners for merging their lives and making sure they are on the same page about what they want out of married life.
That said, marriage counseling is not always easily accessible. For couples with conflicting schedules, work obligations, or other outside priorities, it can be difficult to coordinate a time to meet up with a therapist in person. That’s why many couples are turning to online therapy through platforms like Regain. With the ability to receive counseling from wherever is most convenient, and to send messages to a therapist at any time, online therapy can provide an element of flexibility that couples with busy schedules may find appealing.
Furthermore, online couples counseling has been shown to be just as effective as traditional, in-person therapy. A study from 2022 found that couples who received counseling via teleconferencing saw similar improvements in relationship satisfaction to couples who received face-to-face therapy. The couples who received online therapy also saw similar improvements in symptoms of depression, stress, and anxiety. Meanwhile, a study from 2020 also found that online couples therapy resulted in a stronger alliance between couples and their therapists.
Marriage compatibility tests are quizzes designed to give you insight into your relationship and compatibility with your spouse or fiancé. By asking questions about your and your partner’s habits, preferences, and behaviors, they aim to help you reflect on your values and potential areas of conflict. These tests can be useful for gaining perspective on what’s important to you and your partner. However, they cannot tell you how your relationship will play out in the future, whether or not you should marry—or stay married to—your partner, or how you should manage relationship issues.
Couples therapy, whether in person or online, can be a useful resource for couples looking to explore their compatibility in more detail, either before or after marriage. If you are interested in starting your marriage counseling journey, you can get matched with a licensed therapist through a platform like Regain.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
How do I know if my marriage is compatible?
Knowing how compatible you are with a prospective partner is not a simple task. Usually, it involves far more than taking a simple compatibility test or evaluating how similar the two of you are on paper. Knowing if the two of you are compatible often requires far more soul-searching than people like to admit and requires a level of honesty with yourself that may be difficult to stomach.
Although many religious institutions have views on love and marriage that are now considered antiquated, some religious institutions encourage a form of counseling before marriage that can help inform compatibility and manage expectations. Religious institutions are not the sole purveyors of this form of counseling; fortunately, many therapists have services that allow for relationship counseling or pre-marital counseling to help manage expectations before going into a marriage and more clearly identify the likelihood of two people being compatible. This is not to say that this service will prevent divorce; compatibility tests cannot guarantee a successful marriage, after all. Instead, this service is intended to act as a calculator; marriage has odds of success and failure. A compatibility report can help limit some of the risks of failure.
In addition to meeting with a mental health or relationship counselor, you can use a compatibility test, calculator, or another online determiner to measure your compatibility. However, the accuracy of these tests is extremely debatable. Like an online personality quiz, a love test, home marriage test, compatibility test, calculator, or another compatibility measurement should be taken with a grain of salt. It should not be the sole measurement o compatibility you utilize before forging ahead in a relationship.
What does compatibility look like?
Compatibility may not be important in the beginning stages of a dating relationship but becomes increasingly important as a relationship goes on and long-term commitment becomes of interest to both partners. Compatibility is not just about having similar interests or scoring highly on a marriage test, however, and far more often involves the following:
- Two people can have the same basic religious identifier but have vastly different value systems. Matching broad identifiers will not paint an accurate picture of similar values, so it is paramount that partners evaluate their own values and discuss those values with their partner, and determine if their respective values and priorities are a good fit. If one person deeply values putting down roots and community, and another person more strongly values travel and nomadic existence, they are unlikely to be compatible in a long-term relationship or find themselves in a happy marriage.
- Wanting the same basic path in life. Two people who want opposed paths for their lives are unlikely to do well in a relationship.
- Displaying emotional maturity. Although it may be argued that one emotionally mature person is perfectly suited to another emotionally immature person, the truth is that compatibility requires two emotionally mature and healthy individuals (or individuals who are willing to pursue health and maturity) to navigate and foster a relationship successfully.
While the adage “opposites attract” remains as popular as ever, legitimate psychological inquiry into the subject reveals a much different picture of what a happy marriage looks like. Opposites do not typically attract when it comes to romance, and when opposites do come together, they are far more likely to move apart than they are to remain a unit. If you are looking for a long-term connection or relationship, a compatibility reading is an important part of evaluating your future with someone and determining how likely you truly are to last.
Far from being a simple matter of comparing favorite colors or ideal cities, compatibility is better measured in deeply held values, ideologies, and perceptions. Evaluating compatibility (marriage-based or not) is usually not truly effective until some time has passed and effort has been invested in getting to know one another.
What is compatibility in a marriage?
In a marriage, compatibility is the ability of two people to come together and stay together. Although there are countless descriptions or definitions of what compatibility is, compatibility is partly the ability of two people to get along and communicate well. It involves more complicated and nuanced things, such as people’s values, belief systems, hopes for the relationship, and goals in life.
Although compatibility, love, and commitment do not necessarily preclude divorce. Compatibility tests, whether home marriage tests or more investigative evaluations conducted by a relationship counselor are a great stepping stone in evaluating compatibility. Still, to evaluate your compatibility in your relationship (and perhaps your upcoming marriage), you must ask yourself a few things. These include:
- Can I see myself with this person for the rest of my life? Your imagination may not be capable of literally projecting truth into the future. Still, if you cannot seem to picture yourself with your partner a few months or even a few years down the road, this is a pretty early indication that the two of you are not compatible.
- Do I feel safe with this person? Do they feel safe with me? An important part of a relationship that a compatibility test, calculator, or measurement cannot easily quantify is how safe you and your partner feel together. Although you should always feel physically safe with your partner, it is also important to feel emotionally and mentally safe with your partner and create that same safe space.
- Do we want the same things? A compatibility test, calculator, or measurement would be remiss were it not to ask this question. Wanting the same things is a powerful determiner of compatibility, as wanting to go along two divergent paths can quickly and easily create enormous problems in a relationship.
- If one of you is committed to environmental justice, for instance, and the other regularly espouse practices that do not support environmental health, you are likely not compatible in a long-term relationship.
Although compatibility is not enough to ensure your relationship will not end in divorce, compatibility tests (whether conducted using a simple questionnaire like the one above or a more involved evaluation) can help determine how compatible you and your partner truly are.
How do you know you're not compatible with someone?
Compatibility can be evaluated in several ways, some of which are more highly valued among mental health professionals than others. Although many romantic novels, TV shows, or movies will tout the romance of two different people with very different values coming together, these individuals are far more likely to break up than they are to craft a lasting relationship.
If you are in a relationship and you are eager to find out if you are not compatible with your partner, asking yourself the following questions:
- Many couples go into a relationship with different belief systems, hoping that their partner will change, but this is a recipe for disaster and a clear indication of a lack of compatibility. Marriage, compatibility, and belief systems are all intrinsically tied together.
- Do we enjoy our time together? Compatible people enjoy the time they spend together. If you find yourself dreading time with your partner, frequently making excuses not to see them, r counting down the time when you are together, likely, the two of you are not compatible.
- Am I already finding reasons to be angry, annoyed, or upset? Compatible people get along. If you find yourself almost eager to get angry, easily feel annoyed, or constantly experience upset, you and your partner are very likely not a compatible couple.
Should you marry for love or compatibility?
Ideally, you should marry both. Though the term “compatibility” might not sound sexy or spontaneous, the truth is that most people’s instincts encourage them to seek out people with whom they are compatible rather than people they are highly unlikely to mesh well. Successful marriages depend on a host of factors, some of them out of two marriage partners’ control, but marrying someone in the presence of both love and compatibility will offer the best chances of seeing a marriage through to its end and finding yourself happy with your partner in the process.
What is the best compatibility test for couples?
What is the difference between chemistry and compatibility?
Are compatibility tests accurate?
How long does it take to know if you are compatible with someone?
How soon does a man know he found the one?
What are the most significant parts of a compatibility test?
What are common compatibility issues in marriage?
What are the main goals of a compatibility test?
- Previous Article
- Next Article