Online Dating Report: Women Want Younger Men

Advice
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 1,712

When it comes to dating with an age difference, there's usually only one story told: men love younger women, and women love older men.

Yeah, it's true - some men do want to date younger women and some women do only go for older men - but it's not the full story, and it's time we recognized that there's more to May-December dating than one unscientific-but-still-predominant view.

AYI.com (Are You Interested?), a dating service that uses Facebook to pair people based on interests, has pulled data from its 68 million downloads and 20 million Facebook profiles to analyze what it takes to make a successful match. Their experiment focused in on the 1 million recommended pairings in a specific population of 35,942 users ages 30 to 49.

AYI's most surprising finding was this: their female subscribers were five times more likely to show interest in men who were five years their junior than men who were five years older. The old narrative is outdated and inaccurate.

Well, sort of. Men do still like dating younger women, as the AYI study proved. Among the 26,434 men between the ages of 30 and 49 who were studied, 42% said they wouldn't even consider dating a woman if she was older than them. If, however, an older woman contacted them first, they admitted they wouldn't necessarily turn her down. AYI's data shows that a man is only 22% less likely to respond to an older woman than to a younger woman if she is the one who initiates contact.

What gives, guys? If you think older women are an easy target with no other options - and it doesn't require any preliminary effort on your part - you'll go for it, but otherwise you won't go anywhere near them? That doesn't sound like the progressive society I like to think I live in.

There are a few theories that explain why AYI's study turned up its findings. Once upon a time, AYI analysts think, young women marrying older men had an appeal based on wealth. While there are still plenty of women who like the idea of marrying for money, younger women are now inundated with requests from older men on dating sites and the myth of the Sugar Daddy is never as glamourous as it seems.

A 2008 study published in the journal Psychology of Women Quarterly found that women who are 10 or more years older than their partner are more satisfied and more committed to their relationships than women who are the same age or younger than their partners. So guys...don't limit yourself to younger women, and girls...don't be afraid of dating younger men.

The Science Of Speed Dating

Speed Dating
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 1,328

If you'd asked me about speed dating a few weeks ago, I probably would have responded with a blank stare. Speed dating? Does anyone even do that anymore? Haven't those people heard of the Internet? It seemed like a completely outdated approach to finding love.

Then along came not one, not two, but three friends who had all taken a chance on speed dating in recent months. One even involved a boat. Apparently I didn't have my finger on the pulse of the dating industry as much as I thought I did...speed dating is still alive and well, and it's definitely not just for people who haven't heard of the Internet yet.

Curious about what seemed like a very retro way to date, I started to research speed dating. Ok, so people were doing it, but does it work? Is there any way it could possibly be better than the online dating sites I'd come to know and love?

Two researchers at Stanford University in California were just as intrigued by speed dating as I was. They found that there are a few key factors of the standard four-minute speed date that predict whether two people are likely to hit it off. They rounded up students to take part in a series of recorded speed dating sessions, then analyzed 1,100 transcripts of the subjects' dates.

According to the study, men and women most often said they clicked when their conversation focused mainly on the women. Women were more likely to report connecting with men who used appreciative language (like "That's great!"). Women also reported greater levels of connection with men who interrupted them - but only when they did so to show understanding and engagement (like "Exactly").

Counterintuitively, asking questions was not necessarily a hallmark of a good dating conversation. Asking questions actually signals a lack of connection, most likely because it indicates that the participants feel the need to put effort into keeping a boring conversation going. Signs of a good conversation are much more subtle, like the variation in speech volume.

While some previous research on speed dating has found that physical attractiveness is the most powerful force determining whether two people are initially attracted to each other, the Stanford study proves there's more going on. Another study found that speed-dating couples with similar speaking styles were more likely to report a mutual connection.

Speed dating still seems like a thing of the past to me, but if science thinks there's something to it, who am I to argue? Studies have proved that people are shockingly quick to determine whether or not they're interested in seeing someone again and though swift, it appears their decisions are based on more than just a pretty face.

For some sites that offer this type of service you can check out our speed dating category.

ChristianMingle.com Surpasses 10 Million Members

Christian Mingle
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 1,060

Congratulations to ChristianMingle.com, which recently reached a major milestone: the site has now passed the 10 million member mark.

To commemorate the achievement, ChristianMingle launched a nationwide search for the most inspiring love story. All entrants must have met through ChristianMingle.com, and one lucky couple will receive a "second honeymoon" to an all-inclusive Club Med Resort on Columbus Isle in the Bahamas Archipelago of San Salvador.

Greg Liberman, CEO of Spark Networks, owner and operator of ChristianMingle, is justifiably proud of the company's success. "Cresting the 10 million member milestone, with most of those members joining in the past couple of years, is just another indicator of the impact ChristianMingle has on the Christian community," he says. "Our mission at Spark Networks is to create iconic, niche-focused brands that build and strengthen the communities they serve, and ChristianMingle's growth is a reflection of laser-focus on the needs and values of the Christian community."

There's sure to be many more milestones in ChristianMingle's future. According to the State of Dating in America report, 94% of Christian singles think online dating is a great way to meet people. ChristianMingle has certainly felt the boost from the Christian community's increasing acceptance of online dating:

  • ChristianMingle members are now associated with 246,797 churches across the country.
  • In 2012, California-based ChristianMingle visitors surpassed those of any other state.
  • More than 2,500 different types of devices are used to access ChristianMingle each month.
  • Every day, more than 200,000 messages are sent by ChristianMingle members.
  • ChristianMingle users "smile" at each other nearly 100,000 times each day.
  • More than 10,000 new subscribers join ChristianMingle on a daily basis.

ChristianMingle considers itself the premier online community for Christian singles looking to meet a match within their faith. The site's success can be chalked up to its targeted, laser-focused dating experience, based on the premise that Christianity is central to a person's identity and therefore should be an influential force in the choice of a partner.

To build on their mission to support and expand the Christian community, ChristianMingle plans to continue their expansion. "Our commitment to building and strengthening the Christian community is evident not only through ChristianMingle," says Liberman, "but also through our growing Gospel Media Group, a network of online destinations, which includes not only ChristianMingle.com, but also Believe.com, Faith.com, DailyBibleVerse.com, and ChristianCards.net."

For the contest, ChristianMingle announced on it's Facebook page the winning couple on July 15th. For more on this dating site you can read our review of ChristianMingle.

Should I Date Outside My Religion?

Religion
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 858

Religious beliefs are an important consideration when it comes to partnering with the right person. If you're dating someone with strict religious beliefs, regardless of whether or not you share the same religion, there could be challenges. For instance, let's say you are both Christian. He attends services every Sunday without fail and is active in his church, but you prefer a more personal relationship with God. Is this going to be a problem down the line?

It's important to decide for yourself if religion will play an important role with the people you date. Are you looking to have some fun or for a short-term relationship, or something more substantial, like marriage? If you're looking for fun, then it's not so important to find someone who shares the same religion.

One of my readers recently asked me how she should meet men. She is a devout Mormon, and got out of a three-year relationship with a man who was not Mormon, and not particularly religious. Their relationship came to a point where she couldn't see it moving forward successfully, so they broke up.

She told me that she preferred to date outside of her religion, and that she was most attracted to men who weren't Mormon. "But I really want to marry a Mormon!" she added.

This isn't unusual. Many people are attracted to others who don't share the same faith. And it's fine to pursue relationships in these cases, as long as you are both on the same page about the future.

If she was looking to just have fun, dating outside her religion wouldn't hinder her search. But this isn't the case - she wants a husband, a partner. So it is important for her to make some tough choices.

When you date someone outside your religion, ask yourself if you are hoping to convert him/her. Some people are open to learning about other faiths and pursuing a religious practice in their lives, and others aren't. If he seems open to attending church or religious classes with you, great! But don't press the issue. It's important in matters of faith that each individual pursues what feels comfortable to him. It's a mistake to try to convert someone who isn't curious or interested in your religion for his own sake.

And if you are willing to date someone outside your religion, it's good to honestly look at the future. How will each of you spend your free time outside of work? Will he get resentful of the attention you give to your religious practice? Will he expect you to participate in his services? If you have children, how will you raise them?

These are all important questions in deciding how to pursue potential dates. While you might be attracted to people outside your religion, they might not be the best option if you're looking to marry.

Don't be afraid to be honest with your dates about where you stand. It will serve both of you in the long run.

1 in 3 Dating Dads Lie About Having Kids

Advice
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 1,486

Honesty may be the best policy, but it isn't always the policy adopted by online daters. Far from it, in some cases.

According to WhatsYourPrice.com founder and CEO Brandon Wade, lying about age or income are the most well-known fibs told on online dating profiles. But a new survey from his site reveals a less-common online lie: one in three dads lie on their online dating profiles about having kids.

A Father's Day survey of 2,500 male members of WhatsYourPrice.com found that approximately 32% have previously lied about having kids. The data looks like this:

  • Total Average (2,500 surveyed): 32% lied
  • Men Under 30 (1,250 surveyed): 51% lied
  • Men Over 30: (1,250 surveyed): 12% lied

The most common types of lies were:

  • Men claiming they didn't have kids: 96%
  • Men claiming they do have kids: 3%
  • Men claiming they have more/less kids: less than 1%

The survey also found that younger men are more likely to like about being dads than men who are over the age of 30. Wade posits that older men are not only more mature, but also more comfortable with the idea of being a parent. Older men no longer fear that their children will prevent them from being accepted by women.

The data all comes down to rejection, Wade suggests. The more afraid a man is that he will be turned down by a potential date, the more willing he will be to lie about himself. Of course, Wade also warns that lying "is actually a sure way of losing a partner" and notes that "Honesty is the most sexy thing when it comes to dating."

Fortunately, Wade believes a better world is on its way for dating dads. Single parents are more common than ever before, and parenthood is celebrated in today's society. Many women believe that a man who has a child is more mature and more capable of maintaining a long-term relationship than a man who has never had that kind of responsibility.

"With those who are honest, you're going to attract women who don't mind the fact that you are a parent or a father," Wade adds. "It's sort of a strange oxymoron thing: these guys think that by lying they actually get better results, when in fact the opposite is true."

That's nice and all, but...is it just me, or was that survey a really crummy way to celebrate Father's Day?

The Future Of Dating: One Day, Mobile Will Mean More Than Hookups

Mobile
  • Contributed by:
  • Views: 1,058

Everything is moving more mobile these days, but mobile dating is still plagued by one big problem: it's hookup central.

Location-based dating is clearly designed to lead to a meeting, but with that comes a swarm of users who aren't looking for anything more than a quick fling. On a Web-based dating site, users are searching for a totally different experience, one based on meeting vetted, strictly filtered dates that they get to know on the site before arranging future plans to meet in person.

The challenge that now faces the dating industry is to blend the immediacy of mobile with the success of online dating. "There's no effective app for hetero hookups," says Sam Yagan, one of OkCupid's four founders, in an article on Forbes.com. "Grindr is very popular in the gay space for males. But there isn't really a Grindr for straight people."

Still, Yagan thinks there's a future for mobile dating. He thinks the next incarnation of mobile dating will mean using a variety of dating apps: "One may be a I-just-want-to-have-a-beer-with-somebody-new-tonight app. Or I-want-to-look-for-Mr.-Right. Or I-want-to-look-for-Mr.-Right-right-now."

Another possibility for the future of mobile is the social graph. Tinder, a bright new star on the mobile dating scene, is breaking new ground for social dating. Tinder users sign in using their Facebook accounts and indicate their interest in a potential date by swiping to the left or right of their screen. With the recently introduced Matchmaker feature, users can now make introductions between any of their Facebook friends, whether or not they're already using the app.

Sean Rad, co-founder and CEO of Tinder, argues that what's important isn't the future of online dating - it's the future of dating in general. As people - especially young people - become more accustomed to interfacing with the world through their phones, dating will need to evolve into a new experience.

Rad thinks the key will be to move in the opposite direction of online dating. Once upon a time online dating was hailed for offering access to a significantly wider pool of potential dates than traditional dating. But the downside to that, Rad explains, is that online daters also end up experiencing a great deal more rejection.

Rad sees the future of dating as something very different. A smaller pool may solve some of the problems, but the rest is up to you. "Science can only go so far," he says. "You are the best arbiter." Mobile has a place in that future, and perhaps that place is righting the wrongs that online dating has created.