TYPICALLY, RESEARCH HAS delved into what men and women consider deal makers in relationships—the traits they find most desirable in a partner—rather than deal breakers. But now, scientists at Western Sydney University, Indiana University, the University of Florida, Singapore Management University, and Rutgers University have examined the “undesirable personality traits,” and “unhealthy lifestyles” across sexual, romantic, and friendship contexts. The researchers conducted six separate studies to determine what men and women consider the absolute worst offenders when it comes to dating.
And their findings were pretty interesting. Some of the general takeaways: deal breakers are more potent in long-term relationships than short-term (you’re less invested in your partner when it’s a fling, and far more willing to overlook the annoyances); women have more deal breakers than men, possibly because the risks are more dire (i.e. they’re looking for someone who can support them through rearing a child); men and women who consider themselves to be highly desirable and have a bevy of favorable traits have more deal breakers; and people weigh deal breakers more heavily than deal makers—more so for women than men—meaning the negative attributes will overshadow any good ones, no matter how good.
In one of the studies, published in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, the researchers supplied 5,541 single U.S. adults with a list of 17 negative personality traits and asked them whether they would consider them deal breakers in a mate in a long-term relationship, the Independent reports. Even though more women than men considered the traits to be deal breakers, there were more similarities than differences between the sexes. See the results below. And, uh, clean up your act if you’re guilty of number one.
1. Messy, unkempt appearance
The top deal-breaker among men and women is a “disheveled or unclean appearance,” according to 71 percent of women and 63 percent of men.
Seventy-two percent of women and 60 percent of men can’t stand a “lazy” partner.
If you’re “too needy,” 69 percent of women and 57 percent of men are walking away.
“No sense of humor” is a major turn-off for 58 percent of women and 50 percent of men.
5. Geographic distance
Forty-seven percent of women and 51percent of men won’t stay with a partner who “lives far away.” We get it, distance is tough.