“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.
As science would have it, the best decision could well be returning to your first love. In fact, Dr. Nancy Kalish, expert on reunited relationships and author of a research-based book, “Lost & Found Lovers: Facts and fantasies of rekindled romances”, has interviewed thousands of lovers who re-established contact with a former flame. Although a few re-connections crash and burn, almost 80% of rekindled first loves passionately burn for a lifetime of happiness. So, Kalish’s research predicts that yes, your love with your first boyfriend is realistic, and yes, you could remain blissfully happy with him for a lifetime—IF you fit a certain profile.
Who’s right? Is porn a mere pastime, a marital peril, or some combination of the two? Certainly, the question is not an idle one; porn outsells all other forms of media combined every year, and the National Research Council reports that in the USA, porn is a bigger money-maker than all pro sports together. Just last week, Utah’s residents were reported to be America’s top Internet-porn “end users” (pun intended), with much hoopla ensuing about What It All Means.