Men are more satisfied by 'Bromances' than relationships, study finds
Close and intimate friendships between women is an everyday occurrence. Men definitely have them too... but there are definitely more obstacles. So much typical 'masculine' traits involve not making yourself vulnerable to another person, showing affection, and letting your guard down, that it's rare to see guys get quite as close with their platonic friends.
And when they do, we call it a 'bromance' - and it is glorious.
I Love You, Man is a great example of this kind of friendship:
According to a recent study, not only are these bromances happening more often - but a lot of men claim that they get more out of them than they do from their romantic relationships.
A new study published in the journal Men and Masculinities suggests that close, heterosexual friendships between men are providing more emotional satisfaction. Surveying 30 straight male college students who had been in a relationship before or were currently in one, the researchers found that every one of them said they had one "bromantic" friend.
This bromance was one described as having "no boundaries" with regards to sharing secrets, expressing love for one another, or sharing the same bed on occasion. In fact, 29 out of 30 of the subjects said that they cuddled with their bromantic partner.
Initial findings from the study were also published back in May in the journal Sex Roles. But it's in their new analysis that they delve further into the nature of bromances, attempting to identify the key differences between these relationships and romantic ones.
One of the common responses was that students said they felt less judged by male friends than girlfriends. "Tim knows I love listening to Taylor Swift and Beyonce, but I keep that quiet [around my girlfriend] because she would judge me," one unnamed participant said. "I feel like I have to be more manly around her."
In addition to this, sharing emotions and talking about sensitive health issues were something the men felt more comfortable doing with other men. Twenty-eight out of the 30 men said that they'd prefer to discuss personal matters with a close male friend than a romantic partner. "If I found a lump on my testicle, I’d talk to [my bromance] rather than my girlfriend," one man said.
"Lovers are temporary,” another study participant claimed. "A bromance can last a lifetime."
"There was a conclusive determination from the men we interviewed," the study authors concluded from their findings. "On balance, they argued that bromantic relationships were more satisfying in their emotional intimacy, compared to their heterosexual romances."
However, they also suggested that these intimate friendships may have some adverse effects."The rise of the bromances may not altogether be liberating and socially positive for women," they wrote, before pointing out that many of the participants referred to their girlfriends using sexist or disdainful language.
This "us and them" mentality suggested an allegiance with their male friends in opposition to their romantic partners.
While this study is fascinating in some ways, the topic does require some more research. The pool of men they chose were specifically 2nd-year college students, all of which had a sports-related major, and all but one of them were white. However, it still points to how even with more bromances, there may be some intimacy issues for men to overcome.