As Valentine’s Day approaches and married people take a moment to express their boundless and eternal love for their spouse by buying chocolates made in faraway China a romantically long time ago, they tend to take pity on single folk. They imagine a vast tribe of female lonely hearts roaming an emotional Sahara, confounded by mirages that look like marriage-minded men. But according to what may be the biggest study of single people ever, that image is, like the enthusiasm for the chocolate, quite false.
Single men are, on the whole, as likely to want to get married as single women, the survey found. They are more likely than women to be open to dating people of a different race or religion, more prone to falling in love at first sight, more eager to combine bank accounts sooner and more likely to want children. (That distant choking sound you hear is thousands of women finding this news hard to swallow.)
The study — of 5,200 people ages 21 to over 65 who weren’t married, engaged or in a serious relationship — was funded by Match.com, which has a vested interest in understanding the partnerless. But it was carried out by an independent company in conjunction with Rutgers University anthropologist Helen Fisher, social historian Stephanie Coontz and the evolutionary-studies program at Binghamton University.
Full story: Debunking the myth of the slippery bachelor