No matter who you are or where you're from, pretty much all of us will have one relationship that we value more than others in our lifetime. This could be a childhood friend, a sibling, a parent, or - as we get older - most likely a romantic partner that we choose to settle down and build a life with.
But, according to one survey conducted by the spa and healthcare company, Champneys, our idea about soulmates might be a little off, as it transpires that most women actually prefer their best friends to their husbands.
In fact, out of the 1,517 women questioned, a little over 50 per cent claimed that their gal pals ranked higher than their spouses when it came to who they were closer to - and there were a number of reasons why.
The most-agreed-on reason why women preferred their platonic pal to their husband was that they felt they could "talk about everything" with another woman. This was followed closely by the fact that those surveyed felt that their female friends "listen more" than their spouses, and that they "can tell her things [they] could not tell [their] partner."
A lot of the responses seemed to suggest that women simply have a better time with their girlfriends, too, with 39 per cent saying they preferred their pals because, "we laugh until we cry", 29 per cent saying, "I can truly be myself", and a quarter admitting that, "we have much more in common".
What's more, over forty per cent also said that their gal pals were better company because "we enjoy the same things", and 28 per cent said that it was because "she offers better advice".
Amusingly, more than one in four women said their husband didn't get the top spot because their female friends were "less irritating", and almost a fifth of those surveyed said their pals simply had "a better sense of humor".
A spokesperson for Champneys said:
"These research findings back up our own sales stats which show that all female group bookings for our spa days and weekend offerings have nearly doubled over the past 12 months.
In fact, our Girly Getaway and ‘Girls Night In’ packages for groups of six or more are amongst the most in demand packages at Champneys Spa resorts."
Of course, this could just be because spa days are usually marketed towards women more than men, but the fact that these ladies are bringing their friends instead of their partners is pretty telling. Plus, as other studies have shown that women - on average - have told their besties two secrets that their husband doesn't know, and it's unlikely that the lack of a shared interest in clay masks and foot massages is to blame.
So, to any married men reading this, if you want to win favour with your wife: make sure you listen more, make an effort to take an interest in her hobbies, and do your best to be a bit less irritating. Of course, you could always just take her on a spa day - I'm sure that would get you a fair amount of kudos!