Consistently undergoing discrimination of any kind, be it based on race, age, gender, colour or any other factors, not only harms one's health but also the person's relationship and indirectly can affect the health of his/her partner or spouse in the course of time.
"We found that when an individual experiences discrimination, they report worse health and depression. However, that's not the full story-this stress spills over and affect the health of their partners as well," said William Chopik, Assistant Professor at Michigan State University in the US.
The study, published in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science, states that the majority of health issues are side-effects of a strained relation.
"When one partner experiences discrimination, they bring that stress home with them and it strains the relationship. So this stress not only negatively affects their own health, but their partner's as well," said Chopik.
Before concluding, the researchers examined nearly 2,000 couples in the US. The participants' age ranged from 50 to 94.
The participants talked about incidents of discrimination that they have encountered. They also reported on their health issues, depression and tarnished relationships and affinity.
"It didn't matter where the discrimination came from. What matters is that they felt that they were unfairly treated. That's what had the biggest impact on the person's health," added Chopik.
The professor also said that the fact that people get very close to their partners when in a relationship, one's mental trauma effects the other. Thus due to the spillover effect of discrimination, both the partners' good health and well-being gets affected.