/ 06 September 2023

Opposites don’t attract

Image source: Getty
Image source: Getty

Hollywood rom-coms might have convinced us otherwise, but a new study debunked the old adage that opposites attract and endorsed another one: birds of a feather flock together. Researchers analysed 133 traits across nearly 80,000 opposite-sex couples enrolled in the UK Biobank project, including political and religious views, education levels, and drinking habits. Up to 89% of those traits were shared in most partnerships, with couples who appeared to be opposites only differing in minor ways, like whether they were a morning person or a night owl. Just 3% of analysed traits were found to vary significantly among partners – including height, weight, and personality traits, with extroverts found no more likely to couple up with an introvert than another extrovert. Researchers say that’s a good thing because a tendency to pair off along height lines could lead to a strange-looking society down the track… 

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