Brexit preference ‘first question to ask on first date’

Behavioural psychologists say opposing political views can cause relationships to fail

(Image credit: Jorg Carstensen/AFP/Getty Images)

Finding out which way your prospective partner voted in the Brexit referendum could help to predict the success of your relationship, behavioural psychologists have claimed.

Working on behalf of the dating website eharmony, academics from the University of Liverpool analysed the factors that make or break relationships, and came up with questions designed to identify values and key personality traits.

“From Brexit to money, several of the suggested topics are often seen as taboo, but can actually be a great way to break the ice,” says the Daily Mirror.

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“How did you vote on Brexit?” came out top, with Dr Eric Robinson, a reader in psychological science, saying although the question may spark fireworks it is worth finding out early to avoid a shock down the line. “Our political views communicate our wider social values and worldview,” he said. “Research also suggests that opposing political views can cause relationships to fail”.

The issue is most prominent amongst younger generations with reports showing 22% of millennial couples having broken up with someone over political differences.

“Discussing the economy, green issues and foreign policy can also help build a clearer picture of someone’s intellect and levels of altruism” says The Daily Telegraph.

However, asking someone how they voted on Brexit on a first date “could also lead to trouble”, Rachael Lloyd, a spokesperson for eharmony, told the Daily Mail. “Our research suggests that the Brexit vote led to 1.6 million Brits either breaking up with a partner or choosing not to progress things with a fresh romantic interest,” she said.

Almost one in six people polled said the Brexit saga had put a strain on relationships with friends, relatives and colleagues.

In 2017, an app called Hater offered people the chance to match up according to what they can’t stand. Soon after its launch, Tatler reported that 88% of users paired off according to their mutual loathing for Leave or Remain.

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