A new study found that mutual dislikes — rather than likes — help humans bond initially. “There’s something really powerful about the discovery of shared negative attitudes,” said Jennifer Bosson, the lead researcher on this study. She found that we tend to connect when we have a third entity to demean because it makes us feel as if we instinctively understand each other better.
I know this sounds awful, but I think nearly all of my long-lasting friendships (and some relationships) began this way. My childhood best friend and I met when I was accidentally seated next to the kid who picked his warts and ate them in first grade. I cried so hard that the teacher changed the seating chart. My new neighbor and I talked about how weird Wart Boy was and we’ve been friends ever since. I met my college best friend on the steps of my freshman dorm. An awful frat guy tried to make a pass at me and I made fun of him. She laughed. We became instant besties. I know we are taught to be nice and perky to make friends. But screw that. I will continue to form bonds over things I dislike. It’s more fun that way. [NY Mag]