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Half of british men would choose friends over family this Christmas
When Bill Nighy's character Billy Mack chose to spend Christmas with his friend Joe in the film Love Actually", he wasn't the only man in the country to choose friends over family. In fact, one in two men would rather swap their mothers for their mates on Christmas day.
That's according to findings from research by Friends Reunited's newly appointed Friendship Panel into how friends fit into Christmas. The report marks the third survey in a year-long study, which will look at all areas affecting friendship in Britain.
In response to the question, would you rather spend Christmas with your friends than family," one in every two males said they would; compared to only two in five of women.
Interestingly, twice as many men than women revolve their entire festivities around their friends although one in five women do invite their closest friends to join them for Christmas Lunch.
With almost one in three women in their thirties admitting to feeling on tenterhooks throughout the celebratory season and almost one in two people in their 40's feeling relief when it's all over, perhaps the inclusion of friends is a method of reducing the likelihood of the typical festive family feuds.
Often the feuds start well before the big day itself with arguments over who's going where. With over 50% of both men and women of all ages claiming that their perfect Christmas would be spent at home, inevitably some people's Christmas will be spoilt from the outset.
38 year old Panel member Martin Penalver from Essex said: Over the years sacrifices have been made with families becoming more distant. We are a much wider spread society then thirty years ago and the changes in today's world mean families are far more fragmented than in previous years."
The saying 'You can choose your friends but you cannot choose your family' really comes into play during the festive season. With many more of us celebrating outside the home to avoid the stress of a long day cooking it seems clear that friends will come together more so in this environment."
It's not all doom and gloom however as the majority enter January with feelings of Contentment, Joy, Peace and Harmony, only 7% were left feeling disappointed after their Christmas experience but 36% were relieved it was all over for another year!
Learn more about the Friendship Panel and their next task at: www.friendspanel.co.uk
Notes to the Editor - About Genes Reunited
Genes Reunited was launched in 2002 as a sister-site to the Internet phenomenon Friends Reunited. Since then it has grown to become the UK's largest genealogy website.
It marked a revolution in genealogy and ancestry by combining them with Internet social-networking. Members are able to build their family tree by posting it on the site and investigating which ancestors they share with other members. They can also search historical records such as census, birth, death, marriage and military records.
It currently has over 11 million members and over 750 million names listed. One new name is added to the site every single second.