Relationships can feel endlessly complicated. If you can survive a non-awkward first date and move on to the more fun, less stressful phases of dating, that鈥檚 amazing, but you still have to define the relationship before things go any further. It would be a great service to all of us if someone could help make this whole 鈥渞elationship thing鈥 feel less tricky. And no doubt celeb couples feel the same way. Except Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel. They have it pretty much figured out.

Jessica Justin Timberlake Frazer Harrison Getty

While we鈥檙e not seeing any signs of scientists swooping in and fixing our personal relationship struggles any time soon, a study published in the Journal of Marriage and Family does a pretty good job of breaking down some of our perplexing relationship issues into simple categories. According to the study, led by researcher Steven Ogolsky, there are basically just four types of relationships.

We know, it鈥檚 hard to believe it鈥檚 that easy. In order to reach this conclusion, Steven studied 400 unmarried couples in their mid-twenties. He asked the participants questions about how they felt about their partners and used that info to build his theory about the four basic types of relationships. Taking it one step further, Steven even made some predictions about how likely it was that each category of couple would end up getting married (scary!).


The results of the study are sort of like a personality quiz for you and your partner鈥檚 relationship. To make the findings even easier to digest, we found celeb couples that fit all four molds (for better or worse). Keep scrolling to learn whether you and your S.O. are a Miley + Liam or more of a Kate + Wills kinda couple.

Liam Hemsworth (L) and Miley Cyrus Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images)


You and your bae fall into this category if you鈥檙e notorious for the 鈥渙n-again, off-again鈥 routine, a la Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth. You鈥檙e deeply connected, and there鈥檚 no question that you鈥檙e totally committed to each other when things are good, but if there鈥檚 conflict brewing 鈥 look out! While you鈥檙e certainly not doomed for failure, Steven warns that your relationship 鈥渕ay not be sustainable in the long term.鈥 We hope you defy his prediction, Miley and Liam! If this sounds familiar to you, and you want to increase your odds of success, consider seeing a relationship therapist or finding other ways to improve your approach to conflict resolution.

Scott Disick (L) and Kourtney Kardashian Chris Weeks/Getty Images for Calvin Klein)


No one wants to be told that their union reminds someone of Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick鈥榮 relationship, right? If you and your S.O. are spending more time focusing your attention on people or drama outside of your relationship than on working to become a stronger couple, you may not be a solid match. Do you make decisions without consulting one another? Are you quick to spend time with friends rather than with your partner? According to Steven, these kinds of behaviors are a recipe for drama and inconsistency. 鈥淵ou begin to see little things eroding, you start to see the relationship in a negative light and, soon, you give up,鈥 he says. If you鈥檝e watched enough KUWTK, there are SO MANY episodes where Kourt and Scott have reached this point (but really, do they even like each other?).

If your partnership is heading in this direction, it鈥檚 time to turn your attention back to your bae, because according to study results, couples in this category are TWICE as likely as others to break up. If only we鈥檇 known this before, we would鈥檝e realized Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson (Robsten) were doomed (and been a little less heartbroken). On the other hand, last we heard, Speidi (The Hills villains Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt), was still going strong.

Anna Faris and Chris Pratt by Kevin Winter / Staff


When two naturally social people come together, like Anna Faris and Chris Pratt, their relationship is bound to be similarly social. If you and your S.O. both prefer doing things together rather than individually and often find yourselves spending your time among groups of your collective friends, then you probably fall within this type. According to the study, couples within this category are grounded in friendship and genuine appreciation, which leads to a higher potential for success. 鈥淗aving mutual friends makes people in these couples feel closer and more committed,鈥 Steven says. So Anna and Chris aren鈥檛 only hilarious, but they are also totally #relationshipgoals.

Prince William and Kate Middleton pose (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)


Dutchess Kate and Price William are going STRONG. Being royalty isn鈥檛 easy, but they鈥檙e building a beautiful family and totally have each other鈥檚 backs. Our American royal couple, Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel, also adore each other openly (basically all of Justin鈥檚 acceptance speeches dedicated to Jessica have us swooning).

The title is probably a dead giveaway, but couples who fell within this category showed the highest levels of satisfaction, and therefore the best long-term prospects. If you and your partner work through conflict, avoid unnecessary external influences on your relationship, consistently make each other a priority and spend significant quality time together, we have good news: You鈥檙e on the right track! Couples who are in 鈥減artner-focused鈥 relationships are most likely to stick together. Here鈥檚 hoping Selena Gomez and the Weeknd make it happen.

If you think that you and your S.O. fall into one of the first two categories, but you鈥檙e sure that bae is 鈥渢he one,鈥 don鈥檛 give up! The study doesn鈥檛 claim that you and your current partner can鈥檛 develop your relationship into a different type. It just offers a simple framework for understanding typical romantic dynamics. With a little communication and time, you and your boo can find plenty of relationship satisfaction in the future.

Which category do you and your S.O fall into? Tweet us @BritandCo!

(Photos via Frazer Harrison/Getty, Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty, Chris Weeks/Getty Images for Calvin Klein, Kevin Winter/Getty and Chris Jackson/Getty)