Is Intelligence Only Attractive In Theory?
According to Medical Daily, men tend to think that “having an intelligent girlfriend is like having a pet wolf — cool in theory, but not something you’d want in real life”.
At least that is the conclusion of a latest study (sans the wolf); found that while you might like the idea of looking for intelligence in potential partners.
It is a known fact that men cite intelligence as one of the top qualities they look for in a woman. This makes sense from a biological standpoint as smarter women would be better as in terms of looking after your children and more likely to pass along these smart genes to offspring.
However a team of researchers at the University of Buffalo, California Lutheran University, as well as the University of Texas found that “, despite this biological advantage, if given the choice, most men would rather not date a woman who was smarter than them.”
This research was published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin; they conducted various studies on undergraduate male students. They asked 105 men to read a hypothetical scenario of women who have either scored higher or lower than them on a recent exam as well as rank their attractiveness.
It yielded results like the fact that men generally formed favourable impressions and also showed greater interest in women who scored better than them, and not in those who performed worse than them.
“Eighty-six percent of these men also said that they would feel comfortable dating someone smarter than themselves, and none exhibited an effect on the way they evaluated their masculine qualities.”
In the second part of the study, researchers created a scenario where these women were present in flesh and not abstract hypothetical examples.
151 men were asked to partake in an intelligence test and were informed that they would meet with the women who performed better and worse than them.
As before they were asked to gauge the initial impressions of the women and whether they found them attractive.
Suddenly, ‘’the men’s opinion toward the more intelligent women had changed. Now, the majority of men rated the more intelligent women less attractive and showed less desire to exchange contact information or plan a date.”
In a final test, men and women were paired off and had to partake in another intelligence test but in the same room. Once, completed they were told to read their scores aloud and the men were told to move their chairs closer to the women they were paired with.
You can gather that…the men whose partners performed better tended to put more distance between their chairs and their partner’s; which displays a desire to be further away.
No surprise as the men were asked to rate just how closely they identified with stereotypical male quantities, but this time many of them reported feeling less masculine; which differs from the results of the first experiment, where hypothetical women were involved.
These studies conclude that when it comes to finding intelligence sexy in women is a mere attractive trait in theory.
If you met a woman who was superior in intelligence, would this become a turnoff? Leaves one thinking do you really want what you say you want?
Sources: Medical Daily, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin