We all know that type of couple: The one that seems to have not a care in the world and to act without thinking by throwing lavish house parties and going on adventurous getaways. Their innate impulsivity makes us wonder — will this couple last ‘til the end of time, or will they fall apart once the spontaneity dies out?

In a new study published in the Journal of Research in Personality, researchers from the University of Buffalo found when both partners are impulsive, they tend to have greater relationship satisfaction. These couples are more likely to share a love for spontaneity that can supersede the negative effects of their impulsivity, such as making rash decisions they later regret.

“When both partners were impulsive, they didn't experience the same levels of negative behavior and seemed to understand each other better,” Dr. Jaye L. Derrick, now a professor at the University of Houston, told Medical Daily.

Derrick and her colleagues recruited married or cohabitating heterosexual couples who had been together for an average of 10 years. The participants completed a series of mailed questionnaires that measured demographics, personality, and attitudes. At the lab assessment, couples completed a series of neurocognitive and behavioral tasks; computerized questionnaires assessing alcohol and drug use, relationship functioning, and partner aggression; and a conflict interview.

The researchers also relied on the level of satisfaction couples reported in their relationships and whether any spoke of their partner having negative behaviors or acting unresponsive toward them. These factors helped researchers evaluate how impulsivity in one or both partners affected the fate of their relationship. To do this, they tested three relatively similar hypotheses: the volatility hypothesis (one partner is impulsive, relationship worsens); the compatibility hypothesis (similar views of impulsivity, relationship progresses); and the incompatibility hypothesis (different views of impulsivity, decreased relationship quality).

The findings revealed when both partners were inclined to act equally impulsive, they were more compatible. But if one partner was impulsive and the other wasn’t, the relationship suffered. Mutual impulsivity fared better in relationships because, “at the very least, they understand when their partner is being impulsive,” according to Derrick. Impulsive couples are less likely to get into fights about these impulsive actions.

This is contrary to how psychology usually portrays impulsivity. Typically, impulsive actions are viewed as either poorly conceived or overly risky, often leading to unforeseen consequences. However, when these actions have positive outcomes, impulsivity becomes synonymous with bravery, independence and self-reliance. This trait captivates many people, which could have an evolutionary basis.

A 2015 study found some personality disorders could be sexually selected evolutionary strategies. The idea is that rash and rule-breaking behavior could indicate how healthy a person is. It’s “a signal that the subject has such good genetic quality and condition as to live dangerously without suffering harm,” study author Fernando Gutiérrez told Scientific American.

An impulsive personality may not only provide an evolutionary advantage, it could also encourage tighter bonds. A 2013 study found impulsive people think of others before themselves when it comes to loved ones. When couples were asked to talk to 12 strangers and ask them embarrassing questions, those with high self-control split the task among one another. Meanwhile, the couples with low self-control opted to take on more of the load, sacrificing their own comfort to spare their partners. A second experiment found married individuals low in self-control sacrificed more for their partners, yet were also less forgiving of their misbehaviors.

For couples where there’s only one impulsive partner, Derrick reminds the less impulsive person, “it’s not that your partner doesn't care about your needs and goals, it's just the way their minds work.” Meanwhile, the impulsive one has to remember “they’re not holding you back, they want to make sure to set long term goals.”

A healthy dose of spontaneity, like going on a weekend getaway, could be what couples need to add excitement back into their relationship.

Source: Derrick JL, Houston RJ, Quigley BM et al. (Dis)similarity in impulsivity and marital satisfaction: A comparison of volatility, compatibility, and incompatibility hypotheses. Journal of Research in Personality. 2016.