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Chapter 10

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University of Toronto Mississauga
Dax Urbszat

PSY220 Ch. 10 Chapter 10: Attraction and Intimacy: Liking and Loving Others Need to belong: a motivation to bond with others in relationships that provide ongoing, positive interactions  Satisfy the need to belong on balance with two other human needs – to feel autonomy and competence – and the typical result is a deep sense of well being  People (especially women) respond to ostracism with depressed mood, anxiety, hurt feelings, efforts to restore relationship, and eventual withdrawal.  The silent treatment is “emotional abuse” and a terrible weapon to use  Exclusion hurts longest for anxious people, and hurts even when its by a disliked out group  Ostracized people experience heightened activity in the brain cortex area that also is activated in response to physical pain  Social exclusion was less bothersome when participants took an over the counter pain reliever --- acetaminophen  People remember and relive past social pain more easily then past physical pain WHAT LEADS TTO FRIENDSHIP AND ATTRACTION? What factors nurture liking and loving? Let’s start with those that help initiate attraction: proximity, physical attractiveness, similarity, and feeling liked. Proximity: geographical nearness. “Functional distance” Powerfully predicts liking.  Proximity kindles liking  Proximity can also breed hostility  You are likely to marry someone who has lived, worked or studied within walking distance. INTERACTION  Even more significant then geographical distance is “functional distance”: how often people’s cross paths  We frequently become friends with those who use the same entrances, parking lots and recreation areas.  Only 5% of twins said “I could have fallen for my twins fiancée”  Twins’ spouses however, tend to have fairly similar personalities  Why does proximity encourage affection more often then animosity? PSY220 Ch. 10 ANTICIPATION OF INTERACTION  Anticipating interaction also boosts liking  Anticipatory liking – expecting someone to be pleasant and compatible -- increases the chance of a rewarding relationship MERE EXPOSURE Mere exposure effect: the tendency for novel stimuli to be liked more or rated more positively after the rater has been repeatedly exposed to them  Familiarity does not breed contempt, rather, it fosters fondness  Mere exposure applies to even words, letters, nonsense syllables  People chose whatever words they perceived more frequently hence why for example our favorite letters tend to be letters in our names  French students rate the letter W their least favorite  The mere exposure effect violates the commonsense perdition of boredom – decreased interest – regarding repeatedly heard music or frequently tasted foods  Mere exposure breeds pleasant feelings  Even exposure w/out awareness breeds liking; mere exposure has an even stronger effect when people perceive stimuli w/out awareness  Can explain why we immediately like or dislike something or someone  Infants as young as three months exhibit an own race preference, if they are typically surrounded by others the same race environments – they prefer to gaze at faces of their own familiar race PHYSICAL ATTRACTIVENESS  Young woman’s physical attractiveness is a moderately good predictor of how frequently she dates (same with men)  Men do put somewhat more value on opposite sex physical attractiveness  In reality, it is important to both men and women Matching phenomenon: the tendency for men and women to choose as partners those who are a “good match” in attractiveness and other traits  People pair with people who are about as attractive as they are  People tend to select as friends and especially to marry those who are a “good match” not only in their level of intelligence but also in their level of attractiveness  People tend to approach someone whose attractiveness roughly matches (or exceeds but only slightly) their own  Good physical matches may also be conductive to good relationships  Those who were most similar in physical attractiveness were most likely , nine months later, to have fallen more deeply in love PSY220 Ch. 10  In SOME cases the less attractive person often has compensating qualities Physical attractiveness stereotype: the presumption that physically attractive people possess other socially desirable traits as well: what is beautiful is good!  Much as adults are biased towards attractive adults, children are also biased toward attractive children  Is there truth to this stereotype? There is some truth FIRST IMPRESSIONS  Attractiveness probably most effects first impressions  Such expressions help explain why attractive people and tall people have more prestigious jobs and make more money WHO IS ATTRACTIVE?  Strictly speaking, attractiveness is whatever the people of any given place or time find attractive  For cultures with scarce resources and for poor and hungry people, plumpness seems attractive; for cultures and individuals with abundant resources, beauty more often equals slimness  Men are more attracted to women whose waists are 30% more narrower then their hips – a shape associated with peak sexual fertility  During ovulation women prefer men with more masculinized features  They also tend to wear and prefer more revealing outfits than when infertile SOCIAL COMPARISON  What’s attractive to you also depends on your comparison standards  Social comparison effect appears greatest for women, seeing other fit and attractive women tends to diminish a women’s satisfaction with her own body, and being dissatisfied with her body makes her especially sensitive to super-attractive women  Men self rated desirable also is deflated by exposure to more dominant, successful, men THE ATTRACTIVENESS OF THOSE WE LOVE  Not only do we perceive attractive people as likable but we also perceive likable people as attractive  Ex. Individuals who, as you grew to like them, became more attractive  Their physical imperfections were no longer noticeable  “Handsome is as handsome does”  The more in love a women is with a man the more she sees him as physically attractive PSY220 Ch. 10  And the more in love people are, the less attractive they find all others of the opposite sex SIMILAIRTY VS. COMPLIMENTARITY  The more similar someone’s attitude is to our own, the more likable you will find the person  Likeness (similarity) produces liking DISIMILARITY BREEDS DISLIKE  Dissimilar attitudes depress liking more then similar attitudes enhance it DO OPPOSITES ATTRACT? Complementarity: the popular supposed tendency, in a relationship between two people, for each to complete what the other is missing  The tendency for opposites to marry or mate… has never been reliably demonstrated, with the single exception of sex. LIKING THOSE WHO LIKE US  Proximity and attractiveness influence our initial attraction to someone, and similarity influences longer-term attraction as well  One persons liking for another does predict the other’s liking in return  Discovering that an appealing someone likes you seems to awaken romantic feelings  We are sensitive to the slightest hint of criticism Ingratiation: the use of strategies, such as flattery,
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