Last weekend I discussed a woman who had role-played an affair with her husband, assuming identities and meeting as ostensible strangers at a hotel bar. I likened it Roissy’s secret world.
Now science has proven that secret relationships are hot!
Two surveys and a laboratory experiment examined the role of secrecy in attraction to relationships. In the 1st survey, respondents reported that past relationships they currently continued to think about were more likely to have been secret than ones they no longer pondered. In the 2nd survey, those respondents who indicated that a past relationship had been secret also reported that it continued to be a target of their obsessive preoccupation. The laboratory experiment explored attraction between mixed-sex couples who were induced to play footsie under a table in the presence of another couple. When this was secret, greater attraction for the partner was reported than when it was not.
Source: “The allure of secret relationships.” from Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol 66(2), Feb 1994, 287-300.
Possible corollary (not yet studied): public displays of affection can compromise your relationship by blowing its secrecy.
Put bluntly, the secret world is one of the ways to make your relationship indispensable to your partner, and it’s kinky to boot.
As the Stabilizers said in the video in my fake-affair post:
“One simple thing kept between you and me,
Will build a wall no one else can see.”