Sometime in the 1950s, womens magazines started publishing relationship quizzes in their pages with a complex scoring system that arrived at a number. This number was then plotted on a scale and the reader could determine, based upon that number, whether their relationship was good or not.
It seems silly, and compared with the complex testing done today for relationships, it is silly. But it started a phenomenon still going strong. Back then the popular psychological testing technique that was being used in spy films and TV dramas was the Rorschach test. You looked at the squiggly designs and if you interpreted them as female body parts or death figures the red flags went up. Psychology has improved a bit since then and so has the relationship quiz.
Even though they still use the format of answering questions, scoring the answers and then plotting your final number on a graph, the questions have gotten deeper and more meaningful and the research behind the quizzes has gotten to be more thorough. Todays quizzes, often called Relationship Diagnostic Questionnaires, are based on solid couples research and hopefully point out specific areas of weakness in the relationship with the goal towards improving it.
No longer is a simple number used to evaluate a highly complex relationship and place it in a category of good or bad. Today, a relationship quiz is designed to find out where the holes are, who is guilty of what mistakes, where the breakdown in communication lies and how to fix it. Thats a far cry from the Rorschach type of testing that started the whole thing going. Popular relationship quizzes have broken down the testing into two areas the things that drew the couple together in the first place and the skills necessary to keep a good relationship from souring. By asking the right questions in these two areas, couples can get a much clearer idea of why they came together in the first place and then, what may have taken place to drive them apart. They can then relive the old passions, work hard to improve the stagnating skills and in the end, enrich their relationship.