Dear Kindle Subscribers, I cannot thank you enough. Yesterday, just six weeks into its Amazon launch, Love Science became the top-rated, best-selling blog in Amazon.com’s Lifestyle & Culture/Life & Love category; #1 in Relationships; #1 in Behavioral Science; and #5 in Science as a whole. Thanks to you, Research-Based Relationship Advice For Everyone is becoming a reality.
Scientifically speaking, here’s what most women think at move-in: “I wonder when we’re getting married.” And most men think: “I wonder what’s on TV.” Ironically, women are choosing cohabitation now more than at any point in prior Western history—hoping for marriage while doing the very thing that undermines the likelihood of getting it. Be warned: Science shows that most men are inherently more reluctant to commit, and moving in before setting the wedding date hurts your chances of ever having him Put A Ring On It. But there’s still something you can do; here’s what and why.
“No. Not just no, Heck No!” Wise Readers, that’s what you felt about a Pete/Tina shack-up, per the recent Folk Wisdom inquiry. Through it, 41 readers anonymously submitted advice about a real couple in their mid-20’s with three years of dating and a desire to move in. But whereas Tina saw cohabiting as Engagement Lite, Pete viewed it more like a car lot—where test driving now can prevent owning a lemon later. Yet the majority who advised against a Pete/Tina move-in tended to approve cohabitation generally. Which brings us to a deeper question: Is cohabitation helpful in general—for most people on the path to choosing a mate?
Folk wisdom—the accumulated knowledge of regular people—is what most of us really use every day to make our decisions. Which means it’s Important. Often, there are several folk wisdom answers for any one scenario—and social science tells us which of the many possible answers will actually work for most people most of the time. So I’m going to give you a scenario from time to time, and ask you to write back with your advice about it. Then, in a later article I will summarize your answers and give the advice science supports. Ready? Here’s the survey link for this week’s scenario, where your responses will be anonymous: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=hsNlRau4oQu8j_2fv1W8KTQA_3d_3d
Dear Anna, Your core question is one for the ages: Can you change a man? We’ve all been told it’s impossible. But we’ve been shown that a woman’s job is to treat men like grapes, stomping them until they’ve metamorphosed into worthy dinner companions. Science finds a truth quite opposite this cultural show-n-tell. In fact, You Can Change A Man. Just not with criticism. Now that I’ve got your attention…here’s how.