Couples retreats, group bike rides, dinner reservations for four? Yup, sounds like you’re in love—and so are a bunch of your friends. But when was the last time you booked a table with an odd number of seats? According to new research in the journal Psychological Science, that couples-only social circle might cultivate an unhealthy prejudice against your single pals.
In a study of 450 people, both single and coupled, researchers found that those in a stable relationship were more likely to treat individuals of the same status favorably—even in situations where relationship status was irrelevant, like a job interview or voting for a political candidate. “When people feel like their current status—in a relationship or single—is likely to last a long time, they have a strong need to see that status as ideal and exclusively positive,” says Kristin Laurin, PhD, a professor of psychology at Stanford University.
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