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Why Men Are Attracted To Women Who Look Like Their Mothers (And Why That Is OK)

May 07, 2015 2 min read

Oh science! Always trying to break taboos! In Finland, researchers took 70 men and women and compared the face of each person’s spouse to the participant’s opposite-sex parent. The results, at first blush, are a little unsettling. The women had husbands that looked nothing like their fathers. The men, however, ended up with women who looked "significantly" like their mothers. The good news? Urszula Marcinkowska, Ph.D., and evolutionary psychologist at the University of Turku, says there is nothing unnatural about being attracted to a women who looks like your mother. And here is why: Evolution and natural selection have programmed you to seek out people who come from your same species group. Because your earliest and closest contact was with your mother, she becomes his template.  Fathers—no matter how dedicated and present—simply don’t leave the same type of imprint on their daughter’s mate preferences, Marcinkowska adds. But sorry boys, this mother-son connection doesn't stop at looks. Your relationship with your mother will play a big role in how well you connect with women down the road says Michael Kimmel, Ph.D., a SUNY sociologist and author of Guyland. The best foundation for healthy romantic attachments is a close and affectionate mother-son bond, Kimmel says. But what happens if that wasn't/isn't his experience? If his mother was neglectful or distant, he may seek out those sorts of women in partners. Why? William Pollack, Ph.D., an expert on men and young men at Cambridge Health Alliance and Harvard Medical School, says that he is trying to "fix" that broken relationship. “But that hardly ever works out,” Pollack explains. The best thing a guy can do is look for patterns in his failed relationships. If he sees similarities between those relationship and his relationship with his mother, it is time to start dating a different type of gal. One who is the opposite of mommy dearest. See, not really that creepy, right? Dudes, will this change your dating preferences? Ladies, will you be paying closer attention to the way he interacts with his mother? h/t: Men's Health

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