Simulated Relationships Offer Insight Into Real Ones

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multiplelovechoice.jpgFrom Science Daily

Science Daily — Is it me, or are you a less than ideal partner? For psychologists studying how people manage romantic relationships, that’s not an easy question to answer. What if one of the partners is deeply afraid of intimacy? Could she be acting in ways that undermine the relationship? Or is her partner contributing to the problem?

In a new study appearing in Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, researchers at the University of Illinois explore these issues by looking at the choices people make in simulated online dating relationships. By standardizing the behavior of the romantic “partner,” the study clarifies how each participant’s outlook influences his or her choices and satisfaction with the romance.

The online study took participants through a series of scenarios about a relationship with a fictional partner. Each scenario ended with two options, from which the participant chose his or her response.

Tango’s Take
Great, some choose your own adventure novel is telling us how to act on a date. We’re dying to get a sample of some of more polarizing questions: 1) He keeps his last wife’s ashes in an urn over the fire place: Do you A) live with it, despite the feeling that she’s watching you, judging you and knows that you’ll never add up? or B) ‘forget’ that the urn has the ashes and sell it for $0.50 at a garage sale?
That’s probably a pretty good indication of what kind of lover you are.

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