The people we find attractive in real-life don’t match up with the ideal partner we can talk about when asked, so there must be unconscious elements to attraction.
Evolutionary survival meant that it made sense to be attracted to people who are physically similar to ourselves.
There is evidence that the people we find attractive are likely to be similar to our opposite-sex parent, either physically or in the way they behave.
When we are very young, the relationships we have with our parents form the basis of our understanding of how close relationships work. This means we sometimes seek out similar relationships with romantic partners.
Unpredictable parenting can lead to anxious adults who need a lot of attention in a relationship.
Neglectful parenting can lead to avoidant adults who find it hard to trust and commit.