attraction in relationships

People are attracted to one another based on physical appearance, similarity, differences, proximity, rewards, competency, and disclosure (Chapter 09 Video Summary). Meg and Hamilton Swan were attracted to one another due to appearance, similarities, and proximity. Meg says that they had seen each other in different Starbucks, illustrating similarity in the beverage and brand of choice (Movieclips, 2013).  Hamilton had also seen Meg in the law school before, suggesting that her appearance attracted him and that they are in a similar career or educational domains. Both the law school and Starbucks show that the two were often in close proximity.

Similarities are paramount for the success of a relationship. Even with other factors of attraction, a relationship will seldom succeed without similarities. Lampis, Cataudella, Busonera & Carta (2017, p.34) explain that similarity help couples by enhancing intimacy and fostering balance and equity, which makes it easier to set and achieve common goals. For instance, Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta have been in a marriage for close to four decades. Their similarities in appearance, acting career, and proximities might have contributed to Washingtons’ marital success.

Additionally, complementarity cement the relationship between couples. It is an ideal way to balance similarities and differences, founding completion in a relationship. For instance, Beyonce has the best-acclaimed vocals, which complement with Jay-Z – her husband’s, genius lyrics. The couple creates some of the best harmonic music.

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Both similarity and complementarity are most influential in the formation of my relationships. I feel more comfortable with people whom we share values and beliefs and have similar characteristics. Besides, it is easy to understand one another’s flaws and thus have a straightforward complementarity.  


Lampis, J., Cataudella, S., Busonera, A., & Carta, S. (2017). Personality Similarity and Romantic Relationship Adjustment During the Couple Life Cycle. The Family Journal, 26(1), 31-39. doi: 10.1177/1066480717741689

Adler, R., Rosenfeld, L., & Proctor, R. (2018). Interplay (14th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.

Movieclips. (2013). Best in Show (3/11) Movie CLIP – We Met at Starbucks (2000) HD [Film]. United States: The Fandango.