Health Care

Man-on-man 'bromances' are threatening heterosexual relationships, warn researchers

Man-on-man 'bromances' are threatening heterosexual relationships, warn researchers”

Bromances, or "homosocial relationships", have grown more acceptable in recent decades as men no longer fear showing affection towards each other. "So while in a romantic relationship, these men felt they have to maintain a better version of themselves; in their bromances, they can remove the mask and expose more of their anxieties or vulnerabilities without fear of judgement and repercussions, like the withholding of sex or drawn-out arguments", explains study author Adam White, Ph.D., lecturer at the University of Bedfordshire in the United Kingdom.

Men in the study told researchers that their bromances served as an emotional outlet and helped them resolve conflicts in their lives.

"Bromances" are threatening heterosexual relationships, researchers say, as men surveyed report sharing beds, cuddling and getting more emotional satisfaction out of male friendships than those with women.

White believes that the attitudes reflected in the study are a good sign that men are actually becoming more like women.

Another participant, named Martin, said a bromance is like "having a girlfriend, but then not a girlfriend".

However, the authors of the study warn these relationships could threaten the traditional patterns of men and women living together.

Study co-author Adam White, a sports and health researcher at the University of Bedfordshire in Britain, explained to Newsweek that men are more vulnerable and authentic with their friends because they don't have the consequences of offending a friend-ending up in the dog house-looming above their heads. "We are seeing men catch up and start to have the same levels of emotional closeness as women have always been privileged to have", he writes in an email.

The study also found young men "openly pronounce love" to their male friends in a way that would have been socially banned in previous years.

Another talked about a time where he was upset about his grandfather and preferred the company of his bromantic partner rather than his girlfriend at the time. "She expects so much from the relationship and will have a go if I say something out of line, and with Matt we just tell each other everything".

'They didn't feel like there was a standard to be kept or adhered to.

One of the participants, known only as Aaron, said: "We hug when we meet, and we sleep in the same bed when we have sleepovers".

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