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How dependent should you and your partner be on each other? Personality quiz

Affectionate couple in nature during autumn
The couple that strolls together stays together. How well do you know your other half? Photograph: Getty Images

Does absence make the heart grow fonder? Or is it more a case of out of sight, out of mind? Should you and your partner give each other space, or spend every possible moment together? To find out, give the statements below a rating between 1 (not at all true) and 6 (very true), and have your partner do the same.

  • I don’t tend to rely on encouragement from others when taking on a challenge.
  • I never think about living up to my parents’ expectations.
  • If I have an argument with my partner, I get over it quickly.
  • I’m generally happy making decisions without getting help or advice from others.
  • It doesn’t bother me what other people think of my decisions.

Take the average to find your “differentiation of self” score (higher = more independent) and have your partner do the same. Now, how different were your scores? (a) less than 2 points = birds of a feather; (b) 2-3 points = in between; (c) 4-5 points = chalk and cheese. If you are an (a) or to a lesser extent a (b) then there is some good news. A recent study at the University of Lisbon found couples with more similar differentiation of self scores experienced higher levels of sexual desire, and were more satisfied with their relationship generally. If you said (c), then don’t worry – there are always exceptions – but your relationship may run more smoothly if you bear these differences in mind.

Order Are You Smarter Than a Chimpanzee? by Ben Ambridge (Profile Books, £12.99) for £11.04 at

This article titled "How dependent should you and your partner be on each other? Personality quiz" was written by Ben Ambridge, for The Observer on Sunday 14 January 2018 06.00am

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