If you were looking for the perfect excuse to read the Harry Potter series again or justification to head to the bookstore and splurge on the latest Sci-Fi series you've been coveting, look no further. It seems those who love to read sci-fi and fantasy novels make better and more mature partners thanks in part to their love of these books.
A study published by researchers at the University of Oklahoma in the journal Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts titled "What You Read and What You Believe: Genre Exposure and Beliefs about Relationships," states that people who read fantasy fiction and sci-fi books "have more mature beliefs about romantic relationships than readers who gravitate toward suspense, romance, or even highbrow literature."
Chalk that up for a win for any person who has ever been labeled as the nerdy, quiet type simply because they love to get lost in a good fantasy fiction book!
"Individuals who scored higher for exposure to science fiction/fantasy were less likely to endorse four unrealistic relationship beliefs," the study states, according to Pacific Standard. "Romance is not the only written fiction genre to be associated with real-world beliefs about romantic relationships." In fact, it seems that those who love to read fantasy fiction also embrace healthy beliefs about romance and partnership as well.
The study looked at just over 400 adults, both male and female and first gave them a Genre Recognition Test. The subjects were given the names of 15 real authors, and 45 made up authors and were asked to place the authors in one of seven literary categories including classics, contemporary literary fiction, fantasy, horror, romance, science fiction, and suspense/thriller. They were asked about their opinion on certain topics that were deemed "unrealistic" or "destructive" to relationships such as; "disagreement is destructive", "mind-reading is expected", "romantic partners cannot change", "the sexes are different" and "the expectation of sexual perfection.”
They were then asked to fill out a survey where they were asked to write how well or how little they agreed with different statements such as, "People who have a close relationship can sense each other's needs as if they could read each other's minds," and "When couples disagree, it seems like the relationship is falling apart."
The study found that readers of the fantasy and science fiction were "less likely to believe that disagreement is destructive," in a relationship and that they were "less likely to support the belief that... partners cannot change, the belief that sexes are different, and the belief that mindreading is expected in relationships."
It seems that those who have a love of fantasy and science fiction have more balanced and realistic views of how relationships should be, which makes them a catch. Next time you're looking for a partner instead of online dating sites or hitting the club you should head to your local book store instead!