Falling in Love Loses You Precisely Two Friends

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Do the “bros before hos” and “sisters before misters” tropes really ring true?

It will come as no surprise to learn that when people fall in love they lose friends. When you’re in an exciting new relationship it’s hard to think of anybody but that special someone, but do you know exactly what price you pay when you fall head over heels?

A new study from Oxford University has found that a person’s core group of friends, which numbers about five people, drops by two as a new lover comes to dominate daily life. A core friendship group includes people you see at least once a week and people you go to in moments of crisis.

540 people, aged 18 and over, were questioned about their relationships with friends when a new romantic engagement was started. The results showed that love can lead to your support network shrinking, with typically one family member and one friend being pushed out to accommodate the new lover.

“People who are in romantic relationships- instead of having the typical five [individuals] on average, they only have four in that circle,” explained Robin Dunbar, a professor of evolutionary anthropology at Oxford. “And bearing in mind that one of those is the new person that’s come into your life, it means you’ve had to give up two others.”

So, next time you find the love of your life, remember not to neglect your friends. They will be there for you when the person in question dumps you for a younger/ richer/ better looking spouse. (via BBC)

-Frances Perraudin