Watching TV together can be good for couples
So it may not be quite as romantic as watching the stars, but watching Netflix together might actually be good for your relationship.
According to a study by the University of Aberdeen, the more films and series that a couple have watched together, the happier and more committed they are.
In fact, the researchers found that time spent watching box sets together is linked with ‘greater independence, closeness and confidence’ in a relationship, so it’s no surprise that 71% of 18-29 year olds think that TV dates are a great idea.
In the study, lead author Dr Sarah Gomillion quotes Piper Kerman, a.k.a Taylor Schilling’s character in Orange is the New Black as a way of illustrating the power of watching TV together.
‘Promise me you’re not watching Mad Men without me… that when I get out of here, we’re going to binge watch it, together, in bed, with take out,’ says Taylor to her husband.
‘Of all the hardships she endures while incarcerated in federal prison, Piper, a character from the Netflix series Orange Is the New Black, seems especially disturbed that she could not watch a television show, Mad Men, with her fiancé, Larry. Why would Piper long to ‘binge watch’ Mad Men with Larry?’ asks Dr Gomillion. The answer, she says, is in her research.
Watching TV together is also particularly relevant if a couple doesn’t have many mutual friends. The researchers found that in the absence of real life mutual friends, these couples tended to compensate by ‘adopting’ the characters they see on screen.
This means that these couples will gossip about whether Cersei will stay on GoT’s Iron Throne or whether Eleven really is gone for good in Stranger Things in the same way that other couples might gossip about their real life friends.
But don’t worry if you aren’t that big on watching TV – reading the same books will also have an identical effect. Just make sure you discuss them afterwards.