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The Millennials Dating Script Gets a Rewrite

traditional datingH/T to MM

Boston College professor Jesse Cronin offers her students an opportunity to earn extra credit in her Perspectives on Western Culture class. The assignment is simple but far from easy: Ask someone out on a date.

Cronin says this all came together for her during a lecture she gave about the campus hookup culture eight years ago. She says she was nervously anticipating controversial questions about sex and intimacy, but instead one student asked, “How would you ask someone on a date?”

As she began to answer, the questioner became more specific: “Like, the actual words.”

The Millennials don’t have a dating script. They’re game to try it, they just need to learn their lines first. I’ve written before about young people wanting to date and have committed relationships. They clearly do. “63 percent of college-age men and 83 percent of college-age women, would prefer a traditional relationship to an uncommitted sexual one, one study found.”

But students lack the script that accompanies social norms. Here’s why:

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Friday Link Roundup: Let’s Celebrate Independence

Here are some links worth reading!

I’ll be away on vacation next week, and will return Tuesday, July 8.

Jessica Hagy celibacy

JUST SAYING…

 

1. Woman Photoshops Her Headshot To Portray The Standard Of Beauty In 25 Different Countries

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Could Casual Sex Be Right For You?

frat party“This study certainly seems to suggest that casual sex can be a good thing for people who are open to it, desire it, and have positive attitudes towards it.”

Zhana Vrangalova, NYU Professor and Sex Researcher

 

Fascinating new research reinforces previous findings about the role of sociosexuality in determining the psychological effects of casual sex. In Who Benefits From Casual Sex? The Moderating Role of Sociosexuality, sex researcher Zhana Vrangalova sought to clarify mixed and contradictory findings in previous research about the level of regret, anxiety and depression that college students experience following casual encounters.

This study examined the moderating influence of sociosexuality, a stable personality orientation toward casual sex, on psychological well-being (self-esteem, life satisfaction, depression, and anxiety) following penetrative (oral, vaginal, or anal) casual sex among single undergraduates.

As predicted, sociosexuality moderated the effect of casual sex on well-being on a weekly basis across 12 consecutive weeks, over one semester, and over one academic year.

Sociosexually unrestricted students typically reported higher well-being after having casual sex compared to not having casual sex; there were no such differences among restricted individuals. Few gender differences were found.

What is sociosexuality?

To review from previous posts, sociosexuality is measured in three ways:

  1. Past behavior in terms of number of casual and changing sex partners.
  2. The explicit attitude towards uncommitted sex.
  3. Sexual desire for people with whom no romantic relationship exists.

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Surprise! Women Don’t Trade Beauty For Male Status

 

trophy wife

The good old days?

The  Science of Us profiles a new study that investigates the exchange of female beauty for male status in marriage. In Beauty and Status: The Illusion of Exchange in Partner Selection, Notre Dame prof Elizabeth McClintock looks closely at the incidence of trophy wife marriages and finds assortative mating instead.

“I find that handsome men partner with pretty women and successful men partner with successful women,” says McClintock, who specializes in inequality within romantic partnerships. “So, on average, high-status men do have better-looking wives, but this is because they themselves are considered better looking–perhaps because they are less likely to be overweight and more likely to afford braces, nice clothes and trips to the dermatologist, etc. Secondly, the strongest force by far in partner selection is similarity — in education, race, religion and physical attractiveness.”

McClintock’s research shows that there is not, in fact, a general tendency for women to trade beauty for money. That is not to say trophy wife marriages never happen, just that they are very rare.

…McClintock’s research also indicates that, contrary to the trophy wife stereotype, social class barriers in the marriage market are relatively impermeable. Beautiful women are unlikely to leverage their looks to secure upward mobility by marriage.

McClintock is an expert on the behavioral economics aspects of relationships. In this study she differentiates between two prominent pairing mechanisms:

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The Two Questions You Should Ask Before Sex

Defining the Relationship Talk

Isabel thought she’d found the real thing, then he disappeared after sex. There are two questions that could have reduced the risk of this significantly.

Hi Susan, 

I recently read your article about how to not fall for the player and I have to say it described the same scenario I just went through. This guy was perfect when we were together…every date he was a total gentleman (didn’t even try to kiss me the first date), and I thought everything was going fine.

I mean, he works in Private Equity and works alot so he would cancel sometimes, but he always made up our dates later and apologized for how busy he was. Anyway, we finally hooked up after the sixth date and the next morning was perfect. We cuddled and he even offered to let me stay in and sleep in.

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