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Research Suggests That Men Are More Satisfied by Bromances Than by Their Relationships

The bromance between Matt Damon and Ben Affleck was so well-known that it inspired an off-Broadway play called Matt and Ben. There’s even such a thing as Bromance Day, which is sometime in July or August! Even then, bromance is still more relevant than we might think, because a study found that men find more emotional satisfaction in their bromance than in their romantic relationships.

We at Bright Side were so surprised by this finding that we felt the need to delve deeper to understand the reasons behind it.

Brothers before lovers.

Bromances appear to give young men more emotional stability and better conflict resolution skills, compared to the emotional lives they share with their girlfriends, according to a study. All of the participants said that they find it easier to open up and express their feelings to their male buddies, than to their romantic partners. One of the reasons is that they feel less judged and they have less boundaries. They also said that they don’t have to always guard what they do or say, because they think bromance partners are more forgiving.

The study, which was published in Men and Masculinities, interviewed 30 heterosexual men who were in the second year of their university studies. They were required to be second-year students so that they’d have enough time to develop friendships with their university peers. All of them have been in or were involved in a bromance and a romantic relationship at the time of the study.

The impact of a strong bromance

If men felt like they could express themselves better around their close male friends, than they could around their girlfriends, it might influence their decision-making. For example, they might prefer to have their buddy as a roommate, instead of moving in with their girlfriend and advancing to the next stage of their relationship.

While a bromance is good for men because they have an emotional outlet, researchers expressed concerns about its effects on women. They found that the participants tend to generalize their personal experiences with women, as if they were applying “their learnings” to every woman and thus had a Men vs Women mentality. Some of the findings even suggested that some of these men had a limited respect for their past and present girlfriends.

More research needs to be done.

However, more research needs to be done to support the conclusion of this study. Not only was the sample of this study made up of only heterosexual second-year university students, they were also all from middle-class backgrounds, and mostly white. Since the study is very small and its sample, very homogenous, it might not be applicable to every man out there.

Do you know anyone whose bromance is stronger than their romantic relationship? Share this with them and ask them if this is the reason why!

Please note: This article was updated in April 2022 to correct source material and factual inaccuracies.
Preview photo credit prideofgypsies / instagram
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