Is it true that like attracts like? When it comes to mental health, it seems the answer is yes.
A study published in JAMA Psychiatry this week sheds light on the influence of psychiatric disorders on relationships and mating.
The study from the famous Karolinska Insitute in Swedenexamined over 700,000 men and women with psychiatric diagnoses and compared them to over three million people without psychiatric diagnoses.
They measured marital resemblance for psychiatric disorders. Marital resemblance is the degree to which we marry people who resemble us in some characteristic or another.
For instance, marital resemblance is positively correlated for personality, height and weight – so we have a positive tendency to marry people who are similar to us on these characteristics.
Debate has raged for years around the influence of psychiatric disorders on relationships, and the genetic risks for offspring, but no one has ever collected data on such a large number of people.