Friends Reunited have found that a massive 21.6 million Brits, that’s 43 per cent, keep pictures of their former partners, even when they are in a new relationship.
Unsurprisingly, women are the more sentimental sex. Sixty one per cent of women said that they kept hold of the pictures as they were a part of their life they don’t want to forget, whilst only 56 per cent of men stated this reason.
Men were more likely to have a heavy conscience, with 17 per cent saying that they feel guilty for keeping a picture of their ex, compared to 11 per cent of women.
Twelve per cent of men also admitted that they still had feelings for their ex, which may explain why 20 per cent of men hide their ex’s photo so that their current partner won’t see it.
Only 5 per cent of women admitted to still having feelings for their ex, and 9 per cent said that they felt the need to hide their photos of their ex.
Corinne Sweet, behavioural psychologist said, “It’s not surprising that nearly half of us keep some kind of visual memento of past partners; a photo generates strong emotions as it unleashes memories of past attachment and times.
“The main reason people hide their photos (especially men) is probably due to a fear of their current partner’s jealousy, or of evoking comparisons in terms of attractiveness and sexiness, etc. Emotionally mature partners will be able to accept you have a past love-life.
“The point at which people are able to put an ex-partner’s photo away (after a split, divorce or death) is usually the time they are emotionally ready to move on. Yet, it is totally understandable for people to keep photos to remind them of previous loves, as, indeed, these images do form part of our life stories – whether for better or for worse.”
You’d probably expect women be more concerned with recounting their treasured memories, but 45 per cent of men stated that they kept photos of their ex to ‘bring back good memories’, compared to 35 per cent of women.
Men surprised us yet again by being the more vengeful sex. Two per cent of men said they were keeping hold of the photos in order to use them against their ex one day, compared to one per cent of women.
Matt Bushby, Head of Friends Reunited, said, “We all have photos from our past we want to keep; whether we want to share with others, or remain private. Old photos are often the best – they bring back memories and blasts from the pasts, even if we think we’d sometimes prefer to forget!”
Do you still have pictures of your ex? Would you be upset if your partner kept pictures of their ex? Let us know by commenting below or tweeting us @FemaleFirst_UK.