Watch: The Reason the Happiest Couples You Know Are Probably Fooling Themselves

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It makes sense, doesn’t it, to think that the secret to happiness in a romantic relationship over the long term is to see and accept your partner for who he or she really is, and to be seen and accepted in return. And yet this is not exactly the message being sent from a team of social scientists who study long-term relationships, who believe quite the opposite. People who are happiest in their relationships over time tend to see qualities in their partners that their partners do not actually see in themselves, suggesting either that their significant others are being unduly modest — or that, perhaps, these people are totally deluding themselves.

Either way, this is not necessarily a bad thing. To find out why, watch the latest animated video from Science of Us; after that, check out a lesson from neuroscience that reveals the inner workings of happily married people’s brains. Find even more animated videos in our archive, and come back next week for another new episode.

Watch: Happy Couples Are Fooling Themselves