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Couples who began dating within a month of meeting each other showed very strong assortative mating.By contrast, partners who had known each other for at least 9 months before dating showed only modest signs of assortative mating.If you are hoping to couple with a partner who is objectively more attractive than you, consider doing things together in contexts that allow you to get to know your love interest over time.Had Beast met Belle in a bar, chances are there would have been no fairy tale ending.Over time, however, as Beauty gets to know the Beast, she uncovers his warm nature and her heart softens.Ultimately, the story delivers on its fairy tale ending and Beauty falls in love with Beast despite his appearance. Although attractive people do tend to select other attractive people in many romantic relationships, new research by Lucy Hunt, Paul Eastwick, and Eli Finkel indicates that there are predictable exceptions.While assortative mating is a robust finding, scientists disagree about why it occurs.One popular theory argues a market-based explanation: Individuals compete for the most desirable mates, and those who are themselves very desirable are the most successful in this competition.
The data indicated that the longer partners had known each other before they became romantically involved, the less likely they were to be matched in ratings of physical attractiveness.
The subjective component of romantic desirability, on the other hand, derives from characteristics that are revealed over time and may have a more unique appeal, like sense of humor, creativity, loyalty, and moral character.
As individuals get to know each other over time, romantic impressions rely less on the objective and more on the subjective component.
Couples who spark a romantic relationship shortly after meeting are most likely to match in physical attractiveness; however, when people get to know each other well over an extended period of time before dating, it’s not unusual to see greater disparity in their physical appeal.
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