Interpersonal attraction is a topic that I am fairly familiar with since I’ve discussed it in multiple other psychology courses. Through these courses, I have also learned a lot about the aspects of interpersonal attraction discussed in today’s assignment, such as the Propinquity Effect, the Mere Exposure Effect, and the Similarity Attraction Effect.
The Propinquity Effect, which states that we are more likely to form relationships with individuals that we see and interact with more, is very similar to the Mere Exposure Effect, which states that the more we are exposed to something, the more we begin to like it. And I think that this idea of familiarity with a person, whether it’s conscious or not, is the aspect of interpersonal attraction that I relate to the most. During my freshman year of college, I lived next door to a boy named Colin. At first, I didn’t think much of it, but after we kept seeing each other on a daily basis, we began to form a relationship, and now, Colin and I have been dating for almost 2 and a half years!
The Similarity Attraction Effect is a little different than the two aspects I just mentioned in that it has to do more with the similarity you experience with another person rather than your proximity to them. For example, the Wikipedia lists physical appearance, vocal quality, attitudes, and other social and cultural aspects as sources of similarity/attraction. I personally think that these aspects are more important for interpersonal attraction than just how often you see or interact with someone (like the Propinquity Effect and the Mere Exposure Effect state). For example, as we learned in our previous assignment on online dating, plenty of people have happy relationships even though they may live in other places or may not communicate on a daily basis. However, if you cannot relate to another person in terms of your values and desires, it’s hard to build a relationship.
Something that relates to the idea of the similarity attraction effect are niche dating sites, which are sites that are made for a certain population of people, for example, “Farmers Only” or “Christian Mingle”, which serves as a place for single people to meet other single people who share similar interests as them. I think these sites can be very beneficial for people who only want to date a certain type of person because it keeps them from having to weed through all the possible candidates just to find one or two people they want to form a relationship with.