Toronto, Canada — A new study suggests there’s more than one way to make friends.
Researchers have found that socializing can help a person build a connection with someone of the same gender.
The study, led by Dr. Andrew Rehman of the University of Toronto, surveyed more than 1,400 people about their relationships.
It looked at how they were interacting with their romantic partners and found that, for the majority of people, socializing is an important part of getting along.
Researchers asked people to make a list of 10 friends they had made over the course of a year.
They then divided the list into two groups: friends they made in the last year and friends they’ve made in their first year.
Those who were in the first year of their relationship ended up with more than half of their friends, while those who were more than a year away from the relationship ended with more people than their closest friends.
Researchers also found that the more time people spent with a friend, the more they felt connected.
When the participants made a list from their first-year to their second-year of being together, their friendships were made with people who were closer than they were to each other, the researchers report in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The participants made their list from the first to the second year of being with each other.
Dr. Rehmans team found that people who spent the most time together with their partners made the best friends, especially for their partner’s gender identity.
This is because they feel connected to their partner, he said.
Dr Rehmann’s study also shows that people in their early-to-mid-20s tend to have the most friends they make in their lifetime.
This finding indicates that people aged 25-34 are likely to have friends they have made for the first time, even though they’re only 30 years old, he added.
Dr Paul Haines, a psychology professor at the University at Buffalo who was not involved in the study, believes the findings show that socialising is important for getting along in relationships.
“People who are close with each one of their partners can make friendships that last for years, if not decades,” he said in an email.
“It’s very important to realize that if you are having a hard time, that your friends are out there helping you out.”
Dr Hainies studies how people cope with social anxiety and depression.
He said people who have an emotional relationship are more likely to develop anxiety and mood swings, which are more common among people in relationships where there are multiple partners.
Dr Hains’ study suggests that having a partner who is more close to your gender identity may also help ease your anxiety.
“It’s interesting that there is a link between people’s gender and gender identity and relationship quality, and so having more friends with people of the opposite gender may help to ease your feelings of anxiety and reduce your distress,” he added in an interview with CBC News.
Dr Reinhard Schmidt, a clinical psychologist and director of the Psychology and Psychology of Adolescence program at the National Center for Social and Behavioral Health in Washington, D.C., agreed.
“In a large group setting, where people are often working together, it is much more likely that a person will be in a more supportive and happy situation than if they were in their own individual space,” he told CBC News in an e-mail.
The researchers are now looking at whether this connection with the other person might be even stronger in the absence of social interaction.
“The fact that we’re in a group setting in which people are interacting and interacting together can have an effect on their social identity, their identity as a friend,” Dr Schmidt added.
“This is one of the ways that people get through a stressful situation.”
Dr Reihmans findings suggest that social bonding may be an important way to develop and maintain relationships.
Dr Rehams study also suggests that social connections may even help people deal with depression.
“Social bonding is one aspect of wellbeing that people can work on, but it’s not the only way people might be able to be healthy and productive,” Dr Rehmans said.
“There’s a whole lot of other ways that relationships can work and that can also be good for people’s health.”
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