A man's attachment style -a personality trait reflecting his romantic relationship tendencies- may actually influence his perceptions of whether a woman is interested in him sexually, suggests a new study.
The findings showed that men on the higher end of the attachment anxiety spectrum were most likely to imagine a woman being sexually interested in them. "This is due in part to the men's strong desire for intimacy," said Joshua Hart, psychology professor at Union College in New York.
Researchers asked nearly 500 men to imagine a scenario in which an attractive woman at a nightclub catches their eye. The woman notices she is being stared at and smiles back. Participants were asked to gauge the level of interest they believed the woman in the scenario was showing, ranging from "not at all interested" to "extremely interested."
The study found that men on the higher end of the attachment anxiety spectrum were most likely to imagine a woman being sexually interested in them. The study's results are an example of how wishful thinking pervades human social interactions.