WINCHESTER - The rise of 'bromance' is threatening heterosexual relationships as men increasingly find more emotional satisfaction from their friendships with close male friends than their relationships with women, academics at the University of Winchester have warned.
The result came from a survey of 30 undergraduates, from whom they found that 28 would rather talk to their male friends about emotional problems, rather than to their girlfriends.
The study was published in Men and Masculinities journal.
All participants had 'bromantic' friends whom they had known for at least 18 months, and lived with.
Of the 30 men, 29 said they had cuddled with another guy, and many said they often shared a bed.
One of the researchers, Dr Stefan Robinson, said the results were "significant and worrying" for women, and that it points to a culture of sexism as millennial men increasingly view women with disdain, reported The Telegraph.
"Given that young men are now experiencing a delayed onset of adulthood, and an extended period of adolescence, men may choose to cohabit as a functional relationship in the modern era," said Dr Robinson.
Most of the survey participants found it easier to resolve conflicts with their male counterparts, and have shared secrets with them which they hid from their partners.
The researchers also said that 'lad flicks' such as the 2012 cop movie 21 Jump Street, starring Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill, cemented close male friendships as a desirable norm.
One of the participants, known only as Aaron, said: "We hug when we meet, and we sleep in the same bed when we have sleepovers. Everyone knows it, and nobody is bothered by it because they do it as well."
Another participant, named Martin, said a bromance is like "having a girlfriend, but then not a girlfriend".
Another participant Harvey said he could only tell his male friends that he listens to music by female singers such as Taylor Swift and Beyonce, as he feels he has to be "more manly" around his girlfriend of she would judge him.
According to The Telegraph, Dr Robinson said: "Young heterosexual men are now able to confide in each other and develop and maintain deep emotional friendships based on intimacy and and the expression of once-taboo emotional sentimentality."