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The adage opposites attract simply is not true, it’s birds of a feather that flock together. Research has shown strong evidence for assortative mating which involves the nonrandom coupling of individuals who resemble one another. We prefer people who have similar values, morals, and belief systems. In addition, we also prefer people who look like us. Yes, look like us.
In a 2010 study by Fraley, a series of experiments was conducted to examine peoples’ ratings of attractiveness and whether or not our aversion to those genetically related to us is conscious. In one of the experiments, a stranger’s face was either morphed with another stranger or a picture of the subject’s own face. Subjects rated the image morphed with their own face as more sexually attractive.
Now before you start to think that we are just incredibly vain and want an excuse to view ourselves as more attractive, there was another component to this series of studies. In the final experiment, subjects were shown faces and half were told that the face was morphed with their own image (when in fact it was not). Those who believed that the face was morphed with their own rated it as less sexually attractive than those who did not think the image contained their own face. Therefore, our attraction to those who look like us occurs on a subconscious level. Once we think (or are told) that someone is similar to us, we steer clear, perhaps acknowledging that this is taboo.
Now I dare you to read this post and not run off to examine the photos of you and your significant other.6 comments