In today’s society it is thought that men and women can be friends without there being any sexual tension between them, but it seems that men find it difficult to keep the ‘friends’ status intact.
A new study released in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships shows that sexual attraction to a woman leaves a man unable to simply be friends with her.
There were two studies conducted, one involved 88 pairs of young male and female friends, the other involved 140 middle-aged people almost all of whom were married.
The researchers have said that the study shows “potential negative consequences” for couples that are in a long term relationship.
The study found that young men were more likely to be attracted to their female friends and wish to date them, whether they were single or not.
On the other hand, young women were attracted to their male friends, but would only act on it if their own relationship was in trouble.
Young men were found to believe that their female friends liked them more than they actually did, and young women were less attracted to attached men.
Middle aged men and women generally felt the same level of attraction towards each other, but middle aged men’s attraction to their female friends was much lower than they of young men.
The only exception to this was when a middle-aged man was single.
Feedback from the participants said that they felt they gained good advice and a confidence boost from having a friend of the opposite sex.
But if they did hold a secret crush, they described it as being more of a problem than a benefit.
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