February 1, 2024

Why Do Gay Couples Look Alike?

Most of us have marveled at some famous or even everyday couples who resemble one another. Some of these couples may be celebrities like Tom Brady and Gisele Bundchen or Vincent Kartheiser and Alexis Bledel, but many are just friends or acquaintances. This resemblance is more than just a coincidence, and researchers have found that it is often caused by similar personality traits. People tend to pair with those who resemble them, and this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. This happens because of the social cognitive process, where we are influenced by the judgments and expectations of others.

Gay men are no exception. Research shows that they have a tendency to date partners who are physically resembling themselves, and this is due to a variety of reasons including in-group bias, implicit egotism, the familiarity effect, and sexual imprinting. It is also because men are generally more visual than women, which explains why the billion-dollar porn industry thrives (think the preening male peacock and the Adonis complex).

Finally, it's worth noting that same-sex couples deal with a lot of the same issues that all relationships do. For example, discussions about monogamy, frequency, type of sex, vanilla-versus-kink spectrum and even time management can differ from couple to couple. These differences are especially important because gay men's rights and existence are constantly challenged by a bitter public who can be harsh in their criticism of the way they choose to live their lives.

It's important for gay male couples to see other gay couples who look a bit like them so that they can feel validated in their choices and know that the principles of their relationship are unique to them and independent of any heteronormative expectations or tired tropes. That's the only way they can stand up to the blaring vitriol that can come their way for their choice of partner or lifestyle and prove the critics wrong by living proof that loving and committed gay relationships are just as happy, healthy and fulfilling as any other.


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