Marriage, as it turns out, is an extremely good predictor of happiness. Married people make more money per capita, eat better, live longer, have more sex and enjoy it more. In terms of comparisons of happiness, you’d need to be making $100,000 more as an unmarried person to be as happy as a married person. (On average, and your mileage may vary, of course. And please, keep in mind, this is Gilbert talking, not me.) Is this a causal relationship? Maybe happier people are simply more likely to get married? That’s true, but studies over time reveal a very common pattern — people are less happy before marriage, experience a happiness peak shortly after marriage, and become slightly less happy a few years into marriage, though remain significantly happier than before marriage.
Well, that’s better news than something about marriage, after all that, making you less happy. But please keep this from the folks who are happiest of all when they’re bugging singles to shack up.
We already know that yogurt is the official food of women. (Dessert: Fling Bar.) And that real men don’t eat the savory egg tart that dare not speak its name. A.K. Whitney over at Siren (via The Frisky) has even been told — by the waiter she just ordered from — that Beef Stroganoff was “a man’s dish.” So tell: have those stereotypes — steeped in lame, undercooked notions of masculinity and femininity — made their way onto your plates? Are you a guy who gets a look for ordering salad? A gal who asks for regular…and gets served Diet?
OK, now I’m hungry. And not, it should be noted, for a rice cake.
I have been celibate for six years. Why? The one-night stands got old a long time ago (I’ve been sexually active since age 16), and the chance of AIDS is simply too great to risk my life on a piece of plastic. My buddies ask me, “Why don’t you just get a girlfriend? At least you’d get laid.” However, I can’t justify dating someone solely for the purpose of having sex — it would be an empty relationship at best, and ultimately doomed to failure.
Also, most all of the women I meet nowadays, in my age group (late twenties), quite often have morals lower than the average college jock. I simply can’t imagine that type of woman one day becoming the “mother of my children.” My friends tell me my standards are too high, and that I’ll never find anyone who will “fit the bill.”
Should I lower my standards? Am I being unrealistic? Is wanting a reasonably attractive and intelligent woman, with morals, a sense of humor, and not of baggage too much to ask these days? Right now, my focus is on developing my future so that if/when I meet “Miss Right,” I’ll be financially prepared to provide a comfortable life for ourselves and our children. In the meantime, it’s difficult not having anyone with whom to share things. It can become quite lonely at times. I’ll admit, my standards are high. I may expect a lot, but it’s only because I have just as much to offer. What’s your opinion?
I’ve been dating my neighbor for two months now. We were both in pretty bad situations to have started a serious relationship. I just moved to the area, know no one, and have a stressful job. His mother recently passed away, and he is dealing with other issues as well. I became completely dependent on him and lost all sense of myself. We have acknowledged my neediness, and have attempted to work through our obstacles, because we truly do share something special. I realize that I am in love with him, but problem is we just broke up this past weekend because I flipped out on him (again). We decided to talk things over in a week. I really want him back, and have taken steps to become more dependent on myself. I know now that I don’t need him to survive — I have a lot going for me on my own. I want us to have the loving, caring relationship we started out with, and that both of us deserve. I’ve always been a strong, stable person, but the slew of changes I’ve faced over the past months have exhibited themselves in some truly loathsome behavior and childish antics. I am embarrassed and ready to start anew. Help. How do I prove this to him?
Sane, Sober and Secure
Say: “I really want you back, and have taken steps to become more dependent on myself. I know now that I don’t need you to survive — I have a lot going for me on my own. I want us to have the loving, caring relationship we started out with, and that both of us deserve. I’ve always been a strong, stable person, but the slew of changes I’ve faced over the past months have exhibited themselves in some truly loathsome behavior and childish antics. I am embarrassed and ready to start anew.”
I recently watched Twilight for the first time and I couldn’t understand why Bella (Kristen Stewart, who I will always identify as the little boy in Panic Room) was attracted to Edward (Robert Pattinson) at all. But then, I’m a guy. I guess there was that saving-her-life thing. That’s sexy. But otherwise? He was kind of a mess of creepy affectations. And let’s not forget he’s really an old man.
Buffy the Vampire Slayer always did a good job of punching a hole in this kind of epic brooding, so maybe that ruined it for me. In fact, my reaction to the movie is perfectly captured in this well edited video mashup of Buffy Summers meeting Edward Cullen:
Cree-pee. I would stake him too. (And, boy, does he do a LOT of walking away.) And yet this is what passes for female-fantasy? Edward doesn’t seem any less creepy when Vicki Iovine at the Huffington Post tries to explain his appeal (in the books) in a vacuous and only barely self-aware piece on what she’s calling “mommy porn”:
I’m in the mood to see more people punched in the nose by a handsome hero. Perhaps the evolution of 21st century men into laptop toting, UFL-lit frequent fliers to further self-importance leaves many women hungering for a man who can cut down a tree, rebuild an engine and catch and gut a fish. And I want one of those kinds of guys handing out a few shiners to the girly men on my list: Bernie Madoff, Bill Clinton, Rush Limbaugh to name a few. Admit it, it felt good to see someone punch Perez Hilton, didn’t it?
To all those guys — myself included — asking “why do women date assholes?” I think her piece inadvertently holds the answer.