Many people with learning disabilities aspire to having friends and to formingclose relationships. Often the latter are discouraged, but for those who enter intosuch a relationship little is known about the meaning and value it brings to theirlives. The aim of this study was to gain an insight into the close relationships ofeight couples with learning disabilities using a combination of dyadic and oneto-one interviews. Data collection and analysis was informed and guided by thecore principles of grounded theory. Five significant types of benefits were identifiedfrom having close personal relationships, namely: comradeship, a sense ofcontentment, availability of mutual support, coping with the ups and downs ofrelationships, and a continuing commitment. Service providers could do more tofacilitate the formation of close meaningful relationships, and strategies fordoing this need to be identified and evaluated.