Monday, June 18, 2007

Girls Who Like Dad Favor Partners Who Look Like Him

(HealthDay News) -- Women who had a good childhood relationship with their father are more likely to choose partners who resemble their father, new research suggests.

The study, published in the July issue of the journal Evolution and Human Behavior by British and Polish psychologists, also found that women who had a negative/less positive childhood relationship with their father weren't attracted to men who looked like their father.

The researchers had 49 Polish women (eldest daughters) look at pictures of 15 faces and choose the one they found most attractive. Their selections were compared to their fathers' faces. The women were also asked to rate their childhood relationship with their father.

The findings offer new insight into how people select partners and the effect that parents have on the process, the researchers said. Until recently, it was believed that this parental influence was a passive process. But this study adds to growing evidence that it's actually an active process.

The results of this study "show for certain that the quality of a daughter's relationship with her father has an impact on whom she finds attractive. It shows our human brains don't simply build prototypes of the ideal face based on those we see around us, rather they build them based on those to whom we have a strongly positive relationship. We can now say that daughters who have very positive childhood relationships with their fathers choose men with similar facial characteristics to their fathers," study author Dr. Lynda Boothroyd of Durham University said in a prepared statement.

More information
There's more on the mental health of children and adults at The National Institute of Mental Health.

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