How Effective Is Online Dating

online-dating

Internet dating has taken America by storm. And with almost 125 million singles now living in the US, it doesn’t appear likely to slow down any time soon. At first matchmakers coast-to-coast felt threatened by this new way of meeting people, but as the industry matured it only reinforced the need for trusted intermediaries and experienced professionals.

San Francisco Gate author Amy Gaff reported this week on a recent study conducted by Aditi Paul, a doctoral candidate at Michigan State University’s Department of Communications. Aditi wanted to look at what happens to relationships of people who met online that don’t result in marriage.

She found that couples who meet online are not only less likely to get married, they are more likely to break up. Then she gave three reasons why she thinks online relationships are less successful than relationships formed offline.

1) Online dating has been shown to provide individuals with too many options to choose from that leads to a lack of exclusivity where individuals find it difficult to be locked into one particular dating partner when they know that hundreds of other potential dating partners are available. This also leads to delayed commitment to the person with whom they ultimately choose to date and start a relationship. This is because online daters know that they can easily look for other potential partners from the dating sites or SNS if the current relationship does not work out.

2) Relationships initiated online take more time to develop compared to relationships initiated offline.

3) Online daters have also shown to take more time to develop relationships purposefully in order to increase the level of trust with their partners, given some of the negative stigma associated with online dating. Eighty-six percent of online daters have reported being concerned about falsification of personal information and deceptive self-presentation of their dating partners.

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To read the original San Francisco Gate article, click HERE.

To read the actual research study, click HERE.

Dating Disparity In America

With the exception of my commentary, nearly all of this post was derived from the research and findings of Wendy Wang and Kim Parker at Pew Research.

Pew Research Center has just released some telltale findings regarding marriage in America. I am color-blind when it comes to matchmaking, and I am as much for gender parity as anyone else. However, there are some startling statistics that relate to race, gender, education and employment that are worth noting and considering as you look for the “bigger better deal” in dating.

Let’s start with some of the more obvious findings. The average age of first time marriages for men has gone from 23 to 29 between 1960 and 2012. For women it has gone from 20 to 23. And now, ¼ of never married young adults 25 to 34 live with a partner. Why? Shifting public values, changing demographic patterns and hard economic times have all been contributing factors.

Somewhat unsurprising is that the proportion of single, never married adults who would like to get married versus those who are ambivalent or sure that they won’t has dropped considerably in just a two year span. In 2010, 61% of single, never married young adults said they would like to get married. In 2012, that dropped to 53%. 13% said they definitely do not want to get married and 32% are unsure (versus 27% uncertainty in 2010).

Some of the conclusions they found were not that startling. 46% of men versus 78% of women feel having a steady job is “very important” in determining whether or not someone would be a good potential mate. 62% of men versus 70% of women feel that similar views on having/raising children is “very important” when considering whether or not someone is marriage material.

This is where the rubber hits the road. According to authors Wendy Wang and Kim Parker,

In 1960, among never-married adults ages 25 to 34, the number of employed men per 100 women dropped from 139 in 1960 to 91 in 2012, despite the fact that men in this age group outnumber young women in absolute numbers. In other words, if all never-married young women in 2012 wanted to find a young employed man who had also never been married, 9% of them would fail, simply because there are not enough men in the target group. Five decades ago, never-married young women had a much larger pool of potential spouses from which to choose.

A lot of women that hire me insist that the man is at least college educated. That’s easy for them to say. Today, 1/3 of women over 25 that have never been married have at least a bachelor’s degree compared to ¼ men. When it comes to advanced degrees there are 77 never-married men ages 25 to 34 post-grads for every 100 women with similar educational credentials.

What has happened? In 1960, 93% of men 25 to 34 were in the labor force. Now, that participation has dropped to 82%. Additionally, median wages have dropped 20% over the past 30 years for men. And because the wage gap is closing between men and women as of 2012, among 25 to 34 year olds, women now earn 93% of the wages that men do. That’s up from less than 70% in 1980.

When it comes to racial differences it seems that in 2012 36% of Blacks, 26% of Hispanics and 16% of Whites 25 or older have never been married. In 1960 only 9% of Blacks, 13% of Hispanics and 8% of Whites 25 or older have never been married. Interestingly enough, 58% of Blacks believe that marriage is important if you intend to spend the rest of your life with someone, compared to only 44% of Whites.

In most racial and ethnic groups, men are more likely than women to have never been married. The major exception is among Blacks. In 2012, roughly equal shares of Black men (36%) and Black women (35%) ages 25 and older had never been married. In 1960, Black men were more likely than Black women to have never been married (12% vs. 8%). 

 

For Blacks ages 25 to 34, there are 92 never-married men for every 100 never-married women. When employment status is taken into consideration, there are 51 employed young Black men for every 100 young Black women. Among never-married White, Hispanic and Asian American young adults, the ratio of employed men to women is roughly equal—100 men for every 100 women. Several decades ago, there was a surplus of young employed men among Whites, and for every 100 young Black women, there were nearly 90 employed Black men.

Ultimately, Darwin’s law of natural selection will take over and the hunt for marriage will be about survival of the fittest. Women will have to outmatch each other in order to land an ideal mate. This is why it is so important to be on the top of your game when it comes to dating. Both marriage-minded men and marriage minded women will have to be their best selves in order to meet their match. Hiring a matchmaker, retaining a coach and increasing the frequency and modes of meeting people are all ways to increase your likelihood of finding a spouse.

There is one more conclusion worth noting. Previously married women are less likely to be interested in remarrying than previously married men. Only 15% of these women want to remarry versus 29% of these men. And 54% of these women state that they are “not interested” in getting remarried while only 30% of these men say the same.

To read the research from Pew please click HERE.

Why Are Women Leaving Their Amazing Husbands

I am engaged to marry an incredible woman. She is strong, independent, and self-assured. She brings out the best in me. As I have been morphing into the future husband I know I can be, I have often stopped and marveled at how different I am from the man I was just two years ago. Moments ago, while we were enjoying our Sunday morning political talk shows, sipping coffee in bed and reminiscing about the night before, I came across this amazing blog in the Huffington Post, “Why Great Husbands Are Being Abandoned”.

Before I pontificate, I want to celebrate the insight and prowess of the HP contributor and applaud her for espousing her thoughts and feelings on the subject. In short, this is a consequence of the feminist movement – and I don’t think it is either a good, or intended one.

As women have been liberated from the household and released into the “man’s world” that they have fought so hard for a place in, they somehow got it into their heads that its their turn to have their cake and eat it too. This new breed of woman who kicks ass and takes names with the best of men around still expects to come home to the “hearth” and have her man be “the man”.

As a dating coach and matchmaker I am constantly telling women (and men) how important it is to have gender roles in relationships. I try to explain that even if you can do it all on your own you have to make your man feel both wanted, and needed. If she expects him to be secure with their relationship he has to feel like she can’t do it all on her own. She can’t do it…without him. And as one of these “androgynous” men I understand that so it goes inversely.

But even as the new world order of women out there continue to earn degrees, land great jobs, start businesses and dominate wherever they roam, they somehow determined that their “ideal match” is their equal. They decided that they want to be with a tall, good looking, well educated, successful, sexy man of the same age. They want this man to only have eyes for them, and to be completely enamored by them. What they want is almost entirely impossible. Those men that I just described who are still single are a rare, rare commodity these days. And they’re usually single because they’re incapable of being in a committed relationship. They are typically looking to date women considerably younger than them with little to no baggage. They want the smart, sophisticated, sexy woman who hasn’t reached their level yet. They want that “hierarchal connection” that this contributor refers to.

So in my opinion, I think these type A women of the world need a reality check and should start looking for the qualities that matter most in a match. They should look for a man who is “respectful, quality, caring, devoted, cherishing, authentic, and supportive” instead of the macho man with a big bank account and even bigger ego. My advice to these women of the world who are winning the wage war is simply this. Who cares if he doesn’t earn as much as you? He doesn’t need to be lighting the world on fire if you’re already doing it for him. He needs to be a partner that you can respect and trust and you need to be the same.

To read the article on Huffington Post, click HERE.

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