Match’s 2012 Singles in America Survey

February 7, 2013

Match has released its 2012 Singles in America survey, including 5,500 singles over 21. (H/T: Stuart Schneiderman) It’s definitely legit, with some very big names attached: 

Singles in America was funded by and conducted by MarketTools in association with biological anthropologist, Dr. Helen Fisher; sex and relationship therapist, Dr. Laura Berman; evolutionary biologist with The Kinsey Institute at Indiana University, Dr. Justin R. Garcia; and the Institute for Evolutionary Studies (EvoS) at Binghamton University.

SIA chart

Singles in America, 2012


SIA, 2012


SIA, 2012



SIA, 2012

Let’s get to some other fun facts. I’ve highlighted the items of particular interest, either because they’re surprising or frequently discussed here at HUS:


  • 47% of singles reported a “friends with benefits” relationship. And those surveyed last year were more than twice as likely to say it turned into a longterm relationship (44%) compared to 20% the previous year.
  • As for one-night stands, the singles survey found that 44% of women and 63% of men had ever had one. Of those, 33% said it had turned into a relationship.
  • 1/3 of singles (31%) had a one-night stand last year (2012).
  • Almost one-third (28%) say they’ve had sex by the third date; almost half (46%) by the sixth date.

How People Feel About Being Single

  • Over 76% of single Americans are happy with their personal life.
  • Nearly 85% of singles either actively want or are open to being in a relationship.
  • 9/10 of singles are optimistic about marriage.
  • Singles’ optimism about marriage has increased over the last 3 years (2012: 90%, 2011: 78%, 2010: 76%).
  • 85% of singles have been in love before – no gender difference.
  • 84% of singles have been in a committed relationship in the past.
  • When asked what the most challenging part about being single is, the most common response – by 44% of men and 30% of women – was not having someone to share my life with.

Relationship Dealbreakers

  • 45% of men are turned off by a woman who “doesn’t care about her career.”
  • 63% of single men and 71% of single women agree that a disheveled or unclean appearance would be a deal-breaker for a potential partner.
  • A majority of men (60%) and women (72%) think being lazy is a deal-breaker.
  • A minority of men (13%) and women (15%) actually said that not wanting kids would be a deal-breaker.
  • 51% of men and 47% of women said a long-distance relationship was out of the question.
  • Nearly half of the heterosexual people (44% of men and 50% of women) surveyed say that bad sex would be a deal-breaker.
  • 38% would cancel a date because of something they found while doing Internet research on their date.
  • 42% would not date a virgin (33% of men & 51% of women).
  • 65% would not date someone with credit card debt greater than $5,000.
  • 54% would not date someone with substantial student loan debt.
  • 49% would consider getting into a committed relationship with someone who lived at home with parents.
  • 71% of women are not likely to date someone shorter than them.
  • 77% of women would not date someone who was secretive with their texts vs. 53% of men.
  • Digital offenses most women won’t put up with – a person who wouldn’t allow their date  to use their phone (74% vs. 48%) password protected their phone (42% vs. 29% of men), was secretive with emails (76% vs. 53% of men), answered calls discretely (69% vs. 47%) or limited their Facebook profile (58% vs. 37% of men).

Relationship Requirements

  • 93% of singles say a partner who treats them with respect is a must have or very important in a potential relationship.
  • Over 80% “must have” a partner who has a sense of humor and is comfortable communicating his or her wants and needs.
  • 73% of both sexes want a partner who is physically attractive to them.
  • 36% of women (and 13% of men) in this Singles in America study report that they “must have” a partner who makes as much money as they do.

Some Surprising Findings

  • 33% of men and 43% of women have fallen in love with someone they didn’t initially find attractive.
  • Only 3% of men would like to ‘just date a lot of women.’
  • 30% of men say they have fallen in love at first sight, while only 21% of women report the same.
  • Over 25% of men will commit to women whom they don’t feel romantically attracted to, provided she has everything else they are looking for in a partner. (If they see all of their buddies getting hitched and having kids, they will feel a desire to follow suit, especially if their partner is pressuring them down the aisle.)
  • Women enjoy having their own careers and they no longer expect or desire financial stability from a mate. Men seem to enjoy this new setup as well, and they like having a partner who has her own life and her own interests.

 How about you? What surprises you most?