Next time, try some soft music, a bottle of wine and ‘Psycho’

How can any guy compete with Tom Hanks in Sleepless in Seattle or You’ve Got Mail? They can’t, and a study out of Scotland confirms it — romantic comedies are bad for relationships because they create unrealistic expectations.

Researchers at Heriot Watt University’s Family and Personal Relationships Laboratory in Edinburgh studied 40 romantic comedies released between 1995 and 2005, and found that problems reported by couples in relationship counseling reflect misconceptions about love and romance depicted in the movies.

  • Jim!!!

    Unless like in Groundhog Day you’ve got 10,000 chances to get it right.

  • Colin

    I always thought so. Finally some empirical evidence.

  • cmc

    This is totally true. They can make you feel badly about the lack of grand romantic gestures, intensity and drama in your life, even if you’re happily paired. Similar to how looking at models in fashion magazines can make you feel sort of lame, even when you’ve got a lot going for you.

    But romantic comedies can also make you feel…well, romantic, if they bring back shared memories of the early story of your own relationship. So I still like them, if I can relate to the actors playing the roles.

  • Carolynn

    So do all us gals get a pass for not looking like Jolie/Barrie/fill-in-the-blank too?

    Just say no to unrealistic expectations all around!

  • Katie Z

    So, this is why I’m still single?