Do opposites attract?  

Outspoken and shy. Serious and silly. Tall and short. Dog person and cat person. The media is filled with portrayals of people who seem “wrong for each other” but end up being a perfect match in the end because of pressing societal standards. The saying “opposites attract” is commonly used to describe relationships between individuals with different personalities, interests or backgrounds. But do we truly create relationships based on these traits and the differences between each other? 

Some people are strongly drawn towards others who possess qualities or traits that are quite different from their own. Maybe they appreciate the novelty and excitement that comes with being with someone who brings a fresh perspective and new experiences into their lives. It could also be that they need a little help with an area they are weak in. 

It’s important to realize that these relationships can extend way beyond romance; in team dynamics, for instance, different strengths often complement each other, leading to more innovative work. Similarly, collaborations within businesses and partnerships can benefit from complementary strengths, resulting in successful ventures. Any situation involving creativity and collaboration can use the contrasting backgrounds of its team members to make groundbreaking work. 

Regardless of physical beauty standards, certain traits are universally considered attractive: 

  • Kindness: a positive attitude and honesty are highly valued and can still win you bonus points in today’s world. 

  • Body type: knowing about someone’s personality rather than just seeing a picture of them broadens perception and allows for decisions based on more than just looks. 

  • Phenomes: a chemical secreted in sweat (kind of gross) that acts as a natural perfume, making individuals more appealing to certain people. 

The harsh reality is, that while opposites may experience initial attraction because of their differences, long-lasting relationships often thrive when there is a combination of similarities and differences that complement each other.  

In many cases, people aren’t actually attracted to their polar opposite, even though it may seem that way. You can be super different when it comes to intelligence, religion, education, race, culture, income levels or attitudes yet still be more alike than you realize.  

In some instances, people with complementary traits may find each other attractive because they fill in the gaps of each other’s strengths and weaknesses. For example, an outgoing and social person might be drawn to someone who is more introverted and thoughtful, as they can balance and support each other’s needs. On the other hand, people who share similar values, interests, and life goals often forge a strong connection.  

In fact, no two people are exactly alike. Sharing common ground can help create a shared vision for the future and ultimately a deeper understanding of each other’s needs. Similar communication styles are more likely to build a strong and lasting emotional bond. Mutual interests in each other’s hobbies provide opportunities for shared experiences and quality time together. Being in a similar life stage as your partner makes it easier to relate to each other’s family, career, or personal experiences and challenges. Finally, a sense of comfort and familiarity makes the relationship feel more natural and possibly even more enjoyable. 

The key is to find a partner who complements and supports you, regardless of whether you are similar or different in certain aspects. What matters most is the genuine connection and compatibility between two people who can withstand the tests of time and life’s unique challenges. 

It’s essential to remember that “opposites attract” should not be taken as a strict rule. People are attracted to others for a various number of reasons, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to forming successful relationships. Some find joy and growth in being with someone who complements both their strengths and weaknesses, while others may thrive in relationships with like-minded partners who share common interests and values.  

Instead of fixating on whether opposites attract, it’s crucial to prioritize finding a partner whom you share a deep and meaningful connection with, regardless of how similar or different you are. A healthy and fulfilling relationship is built on genuine understanding, respect, and support for each other’s individuality and shared goals.  

So… do opposites really attract? It depends on personal preference and what you are looking to get out of the relationship! 


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Posted by Amy Simmonds on


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